1996 Toyota Celica ST 1.8L 16v from North America
An attractive value with endless aftermarket possibilities!
I have had no major problems with this car, and it is driven constantly! However, watch out for the sun visors. They are attached to the car by plastic rods, rather than the metal rods which came on the older models' sun visors. The first time I tried to swivel the driver's sun visor toward the driver's side window, it snapped right off. The complete part costs around $76 at any US Toyota dealer.
When I drove this vehicle home, I checked it's vitals to find there was no motor oil in the engine! Despite the fact it has been so badly neglected, I have never had problems with the engine, suspension or drive train. The engine runs very quietly. This car drives as though it was driven off of the the new car lot yesterday. The exterior of this car is, in my opinion, beautiful. Once you're inside, you will find that the interior is extremely comfortable and well laid out. The factory seats seem to be well designed, as they support every curve of your back. However, taller folks may have problems finding enough headroom, and may have problems climbing in and out due to the fact that the Celica is quite low to the ground. The only complaint I have is the lack of power under the hood, because the ST is equipped with the 1.8L engine normally reserved for Toyota's Corolla. Handling is this car's definite strong point. Not to mention, if the lack of power really bothers you, with a little time and money there are several other Toyota engines which can be easily swapped into this car. These include 2 excellent turbo engines, the 4a-gze from the Toyota MR2, the 3s-gte, found in later model MR2s and Celica All-Tracs. Both excellent choices, and depending on whether you purchase an ST or GT, these engines will drop right in.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 8th August, 2004
Its not really advisable to drop the 3S GTE engine in as this engine was developed for 4 wheel drive transmission, and will break the standard ST box!
Well you can put a 3sgte in the ST or GT with no problems. For the ST, you will have to use the GT tranny or get an E153. Also, you will need to fab a new motor mount.. Not that difficult really. Go to www.6gc.net to check it out.