Rare Japanese Super Car: 1967 Toyota 2000GT

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Halo models are common as manufacturers showcase their technological, engineering, or luxury credentials. Most car makers have produced at least one, making me wonder whether this 1967 Toyota 2000GT could be the ultimate example of the breed. The company created the 2000GT to demonstrate to the world it could build something other than bland daily drivers, but the high sale price meant the GT sold in limited numbers. This 1967 model has led a colorful life, but a thorough restoration returned it to as-new condition. It needs a new home, with the seller listing the Toyota here at Bastian Voigt Collectors Cars in Verl, Germany. They set their price at €890,000 (US$940,000), and while that is a significant investment, it is worth examining this classic to determine whether the figure is justified. I must say a big thank you to Barn Finder Nevadahalfrack for spotting this rare Japanese gem.

It may seem harsh, but there are no prizes for guessing that this classic’s designers gained much of their styling inspiration from the Jaguar E-Type. After all, if you’re aim is excellence, it makes sense to follow the market leaders as a starting point. The 2000GT was a joint venture product developed by Toyota and Yamaha. It didn’t roll off the Toyota production line but was handbuilt at the Yamaha factory in Iwata, in the Shizuoka Prefecture. The program yielded 351 examples of the 2000GT, with most destined for the domestic market. This is one of those cars, with the seller indicating it made its way to the UK in 2013. They say the car underwent a color change from its original Pegasus White to Silver at some point. However, a restoration around twenty years ago saw the exterior wearing the correct paint shade again. After arriving in the UK in 2013, it received minimal use before its purchase by a German enthusiast in 2015. They treated the underside to a professional restoration and underseal, ensuring this classic remains rust-free. The presentation is difficult to fault, with the paint holding a consistent shine. There are no significant bumps or bruises, but some readers may consider the panel gaps as surprisingly large. This is not unusual and is actually common with the 2000GT. However, their consistency is a hallmark of these handbuilt Japanese classics. The glass and trim are excellent, as are the distinctive magnesium alloy wheels.

Toyota and Yamaha left no stone unturned in their quest for automotive perfection, with the 200GT’s mechanical configuration standing as a testament to that philosophy. Lifting the hood reveals a 1,988cc DOHC six that inhales deeply via triple two-barrel Mikuni-Solex carburetors to produce 150hp and 130 ft/lbs of torque. That power feeds to the limited-slip rear ed via a five-speed manual transmission, while the four-wheel independent double-wishbone suspension and four-wheel disc brakes demonstrate the company’s quest for motoring perfection. Those specifications were more commonly seen on race cars than those destined for the road, helping explain why the 2000GT received so much positive press coverage upon its release. The power and torque figures may seem modest, but with only 2,475 lbs to move, that sweet six could launch the Toyota through the ¼-mile in 15.9 seconds on its way to a top speed of 137mph. This classic retains its original engine, and although the seller provides no specific information on its mechanical health, the visual indications are positive. They encourage in-person inspections, suggesting they have nothing to hide with this gem.

Although this Toyota’s exterior and underside have received their attention, the seller claims its interior is original. If this is accurate, its condition is astounding. There is no evidence of wear on the Black vinyl surfaces, while the genuine Rosewood trim is spotless. The wheel and shifter feature matching material, and the plastic shows no evidence of issues. There are no aftermarket additions, with the factory radio retaining its rightful place. An array of gauges monitors the car’s mechanical health and performance. The longer I examine the interior shots, the more I feel that Toyota “out-Britished” the British with the styling and material choices. It appears to need nothing, as we would expect in any classic of this caliber.

The post-World War II years saw Japanese car manufacturers producing licensed copies of European models from countries like the UK and France. As their confidence and engineering skills improved, they wished to demonstrate they could build world-class products that could match anything on the planet. The 1967 Toyota 2000GT was a prime example of this approach, and its appearance caused a significant ripple in the automotive world. Few could believe that Toyota had pulled off a motoring coup by producing a sports car with sharp styling, excellent performance, impressive equipment, and build quality that matched Europe’s best. The downside of this exercise in excellence was that the 2000GT was very expensive, costing buyers an eye-watering 23% more than a Jaguar E-Type. Only 351 cars rolled off the line between 1967 and 1970, including the two handbuilt Convertibles featured in the Bond movie, “You Only Live Twice.” Today, the occasional example will hit the market or cross the auction blocks, with prices above $1,000,000 a common sight. Considering its condition, that makes the price of this car look highly competitive. If you have the money in the bank, would you consider pursuing this Toyota further?

Auctions Ending Soon


  1. SubGothius

    I’ve always wondered what those hatches in the front fenders are for, so I finally looked it up. They’re hinged at the bottom, and one side is for the battery, the other side for the air cleaner and windshield washer bottle.

    Like 19
    • Ken

      The 240z had them too. Clever idea.

      Like 8
      • SubGothius

        Not in the side flanks like here, but the 240Z did have smaller hatches alongside the hood for battery and washer bottle access, tho’ they can’t be opened without opening the hood first.

        Like 5
    • Solosolo UK Solosolo UKMember

      Both of which make a beautiful car nowhere near as gorgeous as an E Type Jaguar I’m afraid.

      Like 5
  2. Howie

    Many years ago i went to the Toyota museum in Torrance CA, it was not open to the public, they had at least 4 of these. But now they moved to another state.

    Like 9
  3. ace10

    Hubba, hubba.

    Like 2
  4. Steveo

    Meh. Just buy a real E-Type and a house or two. You can even find one with the same wrong-hand drive if you like. Neat car, but not $1 million neat.

    Like 8
  5. George Mattar

    With only 351 built, I thought I would never see one, but as the motorsports writer for a suburban Philadelphia newspaper, I interviewed the grandson of a very successful, Toyota, BMW, Lexus dealer about his racing career. We met at the race shop for the interview talking about Porsches, etc. He asked me had I ever seen his grandfather’s car collection. I said no. He lead me into a Walmart size room with the cars. I almost collapsed at the 100 or so cars. Next to a stunning red 1965 FI Corvette, was a red 2000GT. I thought I would never see one, let alone sit in it. Yeah, sounds boring, but if you love all cars like me, it was a thrill.

    Like 36
  6. Rangerwalker24

    I have always thought the Toyota looked slightly better than the E-type as well. Granted, I would never be able to drive the Toyota. Being 6’2″ I would have the same issue Sean Connery had: just won’t fit! That is the reason the hand built convertibles were made.
    Do I think this is worth that much… no. Someone might think it is a good deal though. Great article.

    Like 11
    • Paul Root

      That annoys me about many Japanese cars of interest. I am also 6’2″ and can’t fit in many of them. I can manage in a first gen Miata, and top down in a second generation. None of the rest.
      I had no problem in a 240z thru 280zx. But could barely squeeze into a 350Z and not at all with the top up.

      Meanwhile, I don’t have the seat all the way back on my MGB.

      Like 1
      • Rangerwalker24

        Definitely know the feeling! Lived in Japan for three years: had to drive a Volvo because I couldn’t fit in anything comfortably enough to drive safely.

        Like 0
      • JoeNYWF64

        Thicker seats in newer models & power seat motors underneath?
        & airbag hardware & a maze of electronics taking up space?

        Like 0
      • JMB#7

        Also 6’2″. I found the first gen Miata borderline with the top up (did not buy one because of this). My 1982 RX7 does not require the seat to be on the last notch, and has just enough headroom. That reminds me, I really need to fix that headliner. I have never had an issue with the many Civics that I have owned from 1989 to 2006 models.

        Like 1
  7. Buddy Ruff

    The only one of these I ever saw in person was at Expo 67 in Montreal. My parents had to drag me away from the exhibit.

    Like 8
    • Mark RuggieroMember

      Damn! I was there with my parents too, but never saw one of these!

      Like 0
  8. Kendra KendraMember

    I visited the Toyota factory in Nagoya Japan a few years ago. The main lobby had one car – a 2000GT, same colors.

    Like 4
  9. JMB#7

    As the owner of a (Corgi, James Bond) Toyota 2000GT, I think it is one of the most well styled cars of all time. Much better than the Jaguar IMHO. The fact is that I saw Jaguars on the street almost daily, but I have never seen a 2000GT on the street. Here is my question, were some convertibles and others hardtop? To me, the GT usually implies the fastback or hatchback. I had to go back to verify that the James Bond model was indeed a GT. If they are different versions, then how many of each were produced (the real car, not the model)

    Like 7
    • JMB#7

      To answer my own question. 337 production units were produced as hardtop. Two special units were created “topless” for the movie. I assume that these two were special produced and not part of the 337.

      Like 7
      • Jon.in.Chico

        Yes, two were made for the movie as Connery’s 6’2″ couldn’t fit in the coupe, even though he never drove it – and they were special units not included in the 337 production units – originally designed as targas but redesigned as convertibles as the targas were considered “ugly” … originally, Camaro convertibles were considered for the movie as the Camaro had just come out and they wanted to give it some credence but a Japanese racing driver pursuaded the director to use a Japanese car in a movie made in Japan …

        Like 1
  10. JoeP

    Back in the early 70s I saw one in the dealer showroom in Charlotte NC. I was amazed at what Toyota had made. I don’t think it was for sale, but it would have been a great buy it it was.

    Like 5
    • Pete

      That very car was located at the Toyota Charlotte Showroom on Independence and Trade street in 1987 when I became a Toyota Car Salesman. It was owned by a Guy named Joe Barkley who inherited it from his father. I actually sat in the car once. It was truly a work of art. Little did I know it would be the only one I ever saw in my life I would have taken pics. That same year Joe built a brand new store on the south side of town. Now known as Town and Country Toyota. He sold it as soon as they moved everything there. I think his brother owns the store in Asheville, NC. Not sure where that 2000 is these days.

      Like 1
  11. Marko

    The 2000GT is the definition of a “Halo Car”.

    Manufacturers can build and market cars as Collector Edition, or Super Car, or whatever the title. But ultimately it is the customer and drivers that build the ground swell of interest that elevates a car to “Halo” status.

    This car climbed that mountain.

    Like 14
  12. Martin Horrocks

    I’ve never seen the attraction in these. There are not many, mainly because they were too expensive for what was on offer.

    No change at current price levels either.

    Like 1
  13. chrlsful

    beaut ofa car, not XK-E copy. Look at many (any?) of the ‘sports cars of the mid 50s – late 60s (road /OR/ track). That as the era just like any era (even in ‘other art fields’ – pop ‘music, sculpture, clothing, painting, house design, dance, furniture, etc). They run in packs.
    This one, a variation on a theme.. I enjoy very much (as I too am I of that era).

    Like 0
  14. Eric_13cars Eric_13carsMember

    These have been going for over $1M recently. Hard to see how this qualifies as a ‘barn find’. Doubt that there are too many folks here who could afford this either.

    The other day I rewatched the bond flick “You Only Live Twice” and there’s a gorgeous convertible version of this in it.

    Like 3
  15. RickyMember

    Saw one at the Keels and Wheels car show in Houston,TX a few years ago. Absolutely beautiful! Wonder what they sold for new?

    Like 4
  16. Mike

    This still looks modern. With a few trim tweaks, you could tell people it’s a 2022 model and people would believe you.

    Like 9
  17. Robert Rulison

    Please stop with the E-type comparisons. Take a look at the profile and other views. The E-type roof is much higher (maybe necessary for europeans), which causes a bubble look, the toyota’s roof line is much more pleasing. Also, the E-type fenders over hang the tires drastically making it look bulbus or heavy, the proportions of the Toyo are again more pleasing. I’ll give the Jag the nod on the front end. I never loved the 4 light look, its just too busy. The Jags rear end, however, needs help. The exhaust looks like an afterthought, scraping on every driveway much like the big healeys (my favs, BTW). The Toyo is again, cleaner, neater and just a better design.
    The Toyo is also very, very small. The wheelbase is 5″ less and the roof height is jsut over 2″ shorter at the roofline.
    These may all seem minor, but we could do a similar comparison between the Audi 5000 and first gen Ford Taurus….afterall, they are both 4 door sedans.

    And besides, can’t we just love them both?

    Like 8
    • Richard Martin

      Agree with everything you say Robert particularly the part about the four lights at the front. I love these but I have always thought that the front was the only questionable part of their styling.
      Your reference to the E-Type is valid – another car I have always drooled over but one that is very different to the Toyota.

      Like 2
  18. PeterfromOz

    I remember seeing the release of the 2000GT when it was on the show stand at the Sydney Motor Show. They were giving away brochures as if it was going to be a production model.

    Like 3
  19. 370zpp 370zppMember

    When I look at these cars the word that comes to mind is ‘fascinating’. Fascinating for what Toyota created, when they created it and what it has become.
    Think about it. And only a few short years after these debuted, along came the 240Z. With similar style influences but targeting the masses. Nissan also knew what they were doing.

    Like 6
  20. Mark

    If there was ever a car that needed the
    “Objects in mirror are closer than they appear” applied, its this one.

    Like 1
  21. angliagt angliagtMember

    In 1975,I saw one of these at the Toyota dealer in
    Concord,CA.I looked at it,then sat in it.The salesman said
    I could buy it for $5000.
    As a teenager,I couldn’t afford it,let alone the insurance.

    Like 2
  22. angliagt angliagtMember

    Another story – While looking at the cars in the
    California Mille,there was a guy who entered a ’57 Vette.
    His fuel pump quit working,so I offered to give him a ride
    to the parts store to get a replacement (in my ’67 MGB GT),
    which really made my day.
    While hanging around later,to make sure he got it going,
    I talked to his wife.She said “We shoould have brought our
    other car”.I asked her “What’s that?”.She replied “It’s a ’67-
    Toyota 2000 GT”.
    She also invited me to stop by their Toyota dealership
    in Salinas,CA,& see it sometime.Unfortuantely,I never did.

    Like 3
  23. Car Nut Tacoma

    Beautiful looking car. I’ve heard of the Toyota 2000GT, I’ve seen pics of the car, but for some reason I’ve never seen one in person. It’s a damn shame not many were sold here in the USA. It would’ve made a great predecessor to the Toyota Celica Supra.

    Like 2
  24. Gerard Frederick

    Dominic Longo, the super dealer, had one in his store in El Monte Ca. He had it painted in a weird greenish color, just as tasteless as his Rolle Royce. He actually disliked it due to its manual transmission.

    Like 0
  25. Jon.in.Chico

    I had one – on my desk … I worked at several Toyota dealerships and as a product knowledge prize I won a cast model mounted on a wood block with a copper nameplate … the top lifted off and my business cards fit in the passenger compartment … it’s in a box somewhere here in my home office, a reminder of my sales days …

    Like 2
    • Jed

      That’s a cool card holder mister…

      Like 1

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