1997 Toyota Celica GT


• Enthusiast owned
• Heaps of potential
• Japanese hatchback fun!

The Appeal

With retro-cool Japanese styling, rallying pedigree and useable performance, it’s no wonder these Celica GTs (and its big brother, the GT-Four) were popular with driving enthusiasts back in their heyday, and this particular example would be ideal for someone looking to get stuck in to a project to bring this retro hero back to its former glory.


  • V5 present showing just 2 previous keepers
  • No current MoT certificate
  • Minimal mileage in recent years

Purchased by the vendor for part of their expansive and diverse car collection, this Celica GT has spent the majority of its time in the care of its current owner laid-up and stored, and as a result has seen virtually no mileage put on the odometer since its last MoT in 2015.

Speaking of which, the most recent MoT took place in October 2015, resulting in a pass with advisories.

When purchased by the vendor, the car drove back to the storage location with ease, with the vendor’s team noting that it drove very well for a vehicle of this age and mileage.

Subsequently, however, the car’s fuel pump has succumbed to years of being sat idle, and is now not working. The vendor’s mechanic has stated it will be fixed prior to the vehicle’s sale, though at the time of our inspection it was inoperable.

The Interior

  • Full valet required
  • Generally in good shape - commensurate wear
  • No major damage noted

On the inside, we reckon this ‘warm hatch’ has fared well given its years of use and displayed mileage, though we’ll also be the first to admit that a major valet, steam cleaning and clean-up would be very beneficial to the cabin’s condition.

The seats are in decent shape for their age, though the driver’s seat has a small hole in its outer bolster, and both front seat bases are showing signs of wear-and-tear commensurate with the rest of the car’s condition.

Up above, the headlining is in good order throughout with no sagging or heavy staining, whilst areas such as the gear shifter, door cards and steering wheel display an expected usage patina.

Unfortunately, we were unable to test the systems within the vehicle due to it not starting, and we were also unable to open the lock for the boot. 

The Exterior

  • Full restoration required
  • Appears to be solid
  • No accident damage

If you’re a fan of patina, projects or well-used vehicles, this is just the ticket for you.

There’s no escaping the fact that the bodywork on this Celica GT has seen better days, though the good news is that whilst the paintwork has fared badly, with lots of marks, scuffs and generous amounts of lacquer peel, the panels themselves look to be straight, with no accident damage or heavy impacts noted during our photo shoot.

Similarly, we found no real traces of corrosion on the body panels, and the only real indentation that is worth highlighting can be found on the nearside rear wing, likely from a slow speed ‘car park’ incident or contact.

Under the front bumper, the ‘chin’ spoiler has cracked and requires replacement.

The paintwork varies from ‘dull’ to ‘needing a full respray’ but this is something that could be tackled down the line, should the next owner wish to do so.

All four wheels require some degree of TLC, with the offside front wheel in particular need of attention, if not complete replacement.

The Mechanicals

  • Previously in full running order
  • Vendor has stated the car will be returned to running condition prior to sale

Under the bonnet, the 2.0-litre inline-four engine has seen better days in terms of its cosmetic appearance, but everything looked to be in its right-and-proper place, as far as we could tell.

As we’ve already stated, the engine was not able to be started during our inspection due to a suspected fuel pump issue, but we’ve been told this will be rectified before the vehicle is sold, and the car was previously in full working order when collected following the current owner’s purchase.

There are numerous areas of corrosion to address, and we’ve provided plenty of underside and detailed photographs for you to make your own assessments, in conjunction with the aforementioned 2015 MoT exam results.


With bags of potential, not to mention offering the chance to experience the satisfaction that comes with bringing a modern classic back to life, this 1997 Toyota Celica GT may not be ready-to-use, but does offer extensive opportunities for tinkering, fettling and mechanical learning.

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Vehicle specification
  • Year 1997
  • Make Toyota
  • Model Celica GT
  • Colour Red
  • Odometer 203,263 Miles
  • Engine size 1998
Auction Details
  • Seller Type Trade
  • Location Somerset
  • Country United Kingdom
Bidding history
4 bids from 3 bidders
  • lu•••• £400 24/06/22
  • ne•••• £300 22/06/22
  • lu•••• £200 20/06/22
  • al•••• £100 17/06/22

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