$2K BIN: 1984 Toyota Celica GT-S Convertible

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Even though it took much longer than expected, more seasonable temperatures have finally returned to New England. That being said, I can’t help but find an open-air car like this cheap 1984 Toyota Celica convertible here on eBay to be immensely appealing. It’s a manual transmission car with a fresh engine under the hood, and even looks to be rot-free. The seller is asking $2,000 or best offer, so this could be an affordable entry into top-down cruising with Japanese reliability to back it up. Even better, it’s one of only 200 GT-S convertibles made by American Specialty Cars in 1984. 

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This Celica may be a bit rough around the edges – the fender flares look like they’ve separated from the body and the seller says one of the flip-up headlights is lazy – but those are minor quibbles on a car that has largely disappeared from American roads. A new top is a bonus, but the seller is a bit hazy about what exactly was done with the engine. It sounds as if it was replaced not too long ago, but no word on what its true mileage is. I don’t think the seller knows just how rare this car is, especially being a 1984 model – the number of GT-S drop tops made by ASC jumped up significantly in 1985 to just over 4,000 units.

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Regardless, it’s not a hugely valuable car, but it is rare to find. It’s too bad the original motor was swapped out, but hopefully they at least kept it in the garage for the next owner if desired. Fingers crossed they went with another 22R engine, as you can’t kill those things. The GT-S variants of the Celica incorporated some of the more desirable features from the Supra, including the wider alloy wheels, leather-wrapped steering wheel, unique sport seats and an independent rear suspension. The clutch slips a bit, and if that’s original to the car, I’ll bet it’s near replacement time – especially since the seller claims it was his first car.

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This picture is the one that inspires me with some confidence that the Celica has been treated well. That FJ in the garage, parked neatly next to a boat, presumably belongs to a Toyota enthusiast. Perhaps the GT-S was a father/son or father/daughter project and it’s simply time to move it along for a new undertaking. Given the rarity of the ’84 GT-S convertibles, I hope this one finds a new home with another sympathetic owner who enjoys the warmer months and driving a vintage Toyota unlike anything the manufacturer currently sells. Do you think it’s a bargain at $2K or would you take a shot at submitting a lower offer?

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Comments

  1. Glen

    I’m curious as to how you know who did this conversion, was ASC the only company to do these? If it wasn’t done by the manufacturer, or sanctioned by the manufacturer, I wouldn’t look at this as being as rare as a low production run vehicle. As an example; a Shelby Mustang, compared to me hiring a shop to customize a Mustang. That’s how I see it, anyway.

    • Jamie Palmer Jamie Staff

      These were sold at Toyota dealers as a production model…at least in my hometown.

      • Glen

        I guess that does change my opinion on the rarity of this car, thanks for the info.

    • lee purdy

      My father bought one of these brand new from the Toyota dealership in Tampa, FL. They were modified by ASC through Toyota. Toyota took a traditional GTS to ASC and had them create a convertible. Once they did this, they were built from scratch, as a collaborative effort, with ASC being in the Toyota Celica plant, to handle the fitting of the convertible roof onto the cars. They didn’t actually take 4,428 Celica GT-Ss and chop the top and fit a convertible. They telling of the story of how these were made has, have caused confusion since beginning. 4,428 were made total, with just over half being sold in the US and the rest throughout the rest of the world. Hope this helps. 😀

  2. Jeff

    I was in high school when this car was new and owned a progression of V8 Fox body Mustangs back then and have always been an American car guy but I have always liked the Supra’s and GT-S’s in all the body styles.

    Seems cheap enough.

  3. sparkster

    My girlfriend at the time bought a brand new black 1985 Celica GTS hatchback . That car was fast and a blast to drive. Better handling than my brothers 82′ Supra . She couldn’t drive a stick and REFUSED to let me drive it home for her. Spent 5 minutes teaching her and crossed my fingers that she’d make home. $14,430 new. I’m still looking for a spotless black 85.

  4. George

    I see that the owner is a Pastafarian.

  5. Chuck Foster Chuck F 55chevy

    Not long ago I had a 85 GT-S hatchback,even had those factory louvers for the rear window, was a fun car to drive, pretty good acceleration for a 4cyl, the convertible is at the top of the desire list for fans of the last rear wheel drive Celicas, especially convertible nuts like me. I saw a rough one in Pensacola the other day, they are pretty hard to find. In my opinion this is in the bargain category, I’d be surprised if it wasn’t sold already by now. I also think the convertible conversions done by ASC was a top notch job, equivalent to factory work. Not much else is as fun and economical to drive for $2,000, unless you want a project, I bet it could be cleaned up and put on Ebay for a profit. I know, I’ll be the star of a new show, “BarnFinds Flippers”.

  6. john C

    Not sold yet, two days left,…as of …now. Have a fine weekend all.

  7. 2kTomCelica

    so whatd this gem end up
    sellling for???

    • Jamie Palmer Jamie Staff

      According to eBay, it ended at the $2k figure.

  8. kevin sweeney

    did ASC do any live axel plain GT convertibles? I ask because mine is.

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