Cars like this are why we all miss the 90s. Nothing to do with horsepower figures or ridiculous 0-60 times. You get plenty of those already, what we miss is manufacturers going nuts and bringing to life vehicles that should never exist on public roads.
As in this case, Toyota’s racing division (TRD) offered an official kit body conversion and tuning program for MR2 owners to transform their existing SW20 MR2 into a wide-body TRD2000GT JGT-C race car replica. This was to pay homage to the TRD2000GT wins in the JGT-C Japanese racing series.
1 out of 35 ever made.
To ensure exclusivity, a high price tag was charged and a total of just 35 factory car conversions were completed by Toyota Technocraft Ltd. Each official Technocraft-converted car was made using lightweight fibreglass components and re-classified as completely new cars (with their own specially numbered TRD VIN plate riveted to the body to indicate their authenticity and rarity).
Furthermore, every car converted also had other TRD parts fitted too since they were built to customer specs. Including extensive changes to both the suspension and engine. Most cars left the factory making more power using TRD parts, and at least two examples left the factory boasting up to 500 hp courtesy of a stroked motor and weighed less than 1100 kg for a very impressive power to weight ratio.
Christos, the owner of the vehicle found out about the 2000GT through the TRD2000GT forum online, and he was hooked since then. But how do you acquire such a rare gem?
You wait. and he did wait until No. 8 showed up for sale but unfortunately he wasn’t fast enough to pick it up. But luckily for him the former owner of Number 15 was in the market to sell his and came in touch. After making sure this was a genuine vehicle and sending someone to inspect the vehicle in the UK, the deal was made.
What makes Number 15 different.
This particular model benefits from additional parts, such as TRD strut braces front and rear, Tein suspension with edfc and thicker TRD anti-roll bars.
Under the rear deck lid, things are mostly kept stock, except for some subtle additions such as an ARC intake box and a cat-back exhaust system, Although the engine looks rough in these pictures it produces a healthy 225 hp at the rear wheels.
Speaking of wheels, this 2000GT rolls on the Crème de la crème of JDM wheels in my opinion. Work Equips 05, this three-piece wheel with its 5 spoke design creates a timeless wheel that looks right at home under the 2000GT.
What it is like to own such a rare car.
I mean if you are Christos apparently is nothing special and just like most Toyotas these days, he used for a daily driver in his first year of ownership!
After that, the vehicle was used more as a weekend escape rather than doing school runs. The tight cockpit has something to do with this, but then again this is a car that has only one purpose, to be driven.
Speaking of the interior the only major change is a Nardi steering wheel that replaces the stock item, whilst a pair of period-correct TRD/Defi gauges complete the OEM+ interior.
A car or an investment?
With the ever-increasing prices of anything remotely interesting from Japan, you would think that this vehicle is or should be treated as an investment and be kept in storage for that extra increase in value.
Well, I am happy to say that Christos is one of us, someone that wants to drive his car and enjoy it the way it should.
We would like to thank Christos – owner of The garage automotive services , for his time!
Words & Photography: Odisseas Sophocleous