1993 Toyota MR2 2.0 GTi-16 Targa (W20)


  • Sought after Targa version
  • Comprehensive history
  • MOT to January 2023

The Appeal

Toyota’s MR2 is beloved of JDM aficionados and sports car enthusiasts alike. With its mid-ship drivetrain, fine performance, legendary reliability and smart styling, it makes for a great usable everyday sports car.

This example is presented in well-loved condition, in need of some restoration and recommissioning, but still very usable and with a solid history.

The History and Paperwork

  • First registered in August 1993
  • 7 owners from new
  • Current owner since November 2021
  • Purchased from grandfather’s estate, who purchased the car in February 2013
  • Car was SORN and garaged from 2016-2021
  • Consistent service history up to 2000, with part independent service history after that
  • Numerous receipts and invoices for maintenance and servicing
  • Previous MOT certificates
  • Owner’s handbooks included
  • 2 sets of keys
  • MOT to January 2023

The Interior

  • Black leather upholstery
  • Targa roof
  • Factory 8 speaker premium sound system (radio, cassette and CD)
  • Electric windows and door mirrors
  • Aftermarket Cobra alarm/immobiliser

As this is the Targa version, it comes with upgraded standard interior fitments, which includes full leather upholstery and a premium sound system. We’re told the sound system works well, although the rear-mounted electric aerial is not functioning, so reception on the radio is not great.

The interior appears to be solid and complete, with no missing elements we could discern. However, the leather is beginning to show its age, with wear particularly notable on the driver’s right-hand bolster, gear lever and steering wheel. This being said, there are no rips or tears we can see.

The carpets are black with complementary black over-mats. They all appear to be in reasonable condition, but would benefit from a good valet.

Looking at the dash and driving controls, the vendor tells us that everything works as it should, and it all looks to be complete and undamaged. Naturally, there is wear evident, as you’d expect from a car of this age, but overall it is in reasonably good condition considering the age and mileage of the vehicle.

An advantage of the mid-ship layout is that the MR2 features a front and rear luggage compartment, both of which are trimmed in grey carpet. The rear compartment is quite heavily stained, but may respond well to cleaning. At the front, there is the original toolkit.

The Exterior

  • Original black paintwork
  • Pop-up headlights and integrated front fog lights
  • Glass Targa roof
  • Original 5-spoke alloy wheels

With its smooth, compact coupé styling and neat detailing, the MR2 is a very pretty little car. When finished in black with the Targa roof, it’s really very smart indeed.

This example looks largely solid, straight and original. We’d say it’s a great base for a restoration. The paint has seen better days, with numerous chips, scratches and blemishes, and some blistering to the front wings. With a machine polish and some localised respraying, we think it could soon look very good indeed.

While the bodywork looks solid, there is some remedial work required on the driver’s side sill, which appears to have been previously repaired, but poorly done, and now requires new metal to be welded in.

The wheels are the original 15” Toyota alloys, which suit the look of the car perfectly, but will require refurbishment and new tyres to be fitted.

What we could see of the underside appeared to be solid and straight, with just light surface corrosion to some components. The car’s undertray has been cracked at the front, but that was the only damage we could identify.

The Mechanics

  • Mid-mounted 1,998cc 16-valve twin-cam
  • 5-speed manual transmission

Like all Targa MR2s, this car features the higher powered 3S-GTE engine, which pushes 156bhp to the rear wheels and makes the MR2 a lively and thrilling coupé.

Under the engine cover, the engine looks very original, with some components wearing a light covering of surface corrosion. But we think it should clean up quite nicely. The owner tells us that there is an oil leak and a coolant leak that will require investigation.

As the car was SORN for a number of years, the vendor undertook quite a bit of work to recommission the car and get it through its MOT. Work undertaken includes: new washer motor, new track rods and track rod ends, new brake callipers all round, new front discs and pads, new OEM front springs (new OEM rear springs are included in the sale), new battery, new alternator belt and an oil service.

A Toyosport stainless steel sports exhaust system was fitted in 2013, which the owner describes as producing an intoxicating but loud note.

The vendor reports that the car goes, stops and handles very well, with no smoke, unusual noises or vibrations.


The Mk2 MR2 has always been a handsome car, and is increasingly sought-after. This example is a great base for a restoration project. The bones appear to be very solid, and the fact that a number of mechanical jobs have been carried out already and that this is the desirable Targa model should make it an even more appealing proposition.

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Vehicle specification
  • Year 1993
  • Make Toyota
  • Model MR2 2.0 GTi-16 Targa
  • Colour Black
  • Odometer 132,446 Miles
  • Engine size 1998
  • Town Tamworth
Auction Details
  • Seller Type Private
  • Location West Midlands
  • Country United Kingdom
Bidding history
26 bids
  • Sd•••• £2,600 27/09/22
  • cg•••• £2,500 24/09/22
  • is•••• £2,400 22/09/22
  • da•••• £2,300 22/09/22
  • 36•••• £2,200 22/09/22
  • da•••• £2,100 22/09/22
  • an•••• £2,000 22/09/22
  • ER•••• £1,900 22/09/22
  • an•••• £1,800 22/09/22
  • ER•••• £1,700 22/09/22

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