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Last Driven in ’92: 1986 Toyota MR2

This first generation Toyota MR2 is a garage find that’s been parked since 1992. The MR2 is a two owner vehicle, purchased by a college professor with under 40,000 miles and parked in a climate controlled garage until the house was sold in 2019. This MR2 presents far better than you might expect, but it would likely clean up extremely well considering the black paint still looks to be in good shape and the interior is near mint. The biggest bonus of all is that it comes with an incredibly rad Toyota team jacket, purchased from the selling dealer at the time of delivery and then left in the car ever since. Find this untouched MR2 here on eBay with bids to $5,000 and the reserve unmet.

The first generation MR2 sported a mid-engine design, light weight, and lithe handling. They were a classic case of how you don’t need boatloads of power to make a car feel like it’s flying all the time. Like a Miata, you can get darn close to breaking a lot of rules without ever ending up on the wrong side of the law. The trouble is, finding a bone-stock MR2 from this era is getting quite hard to do, and survivors are often listed with eye-watering price tags when they do turn up. The first generation models, despite being down on power compared to the second generation platform, seem to be faring far better on the collector car marketplace.

That’s what makes this one so desirable, as even in non-running condition, all signs point it being a bargain at the current Buy-It-Now price of $7,500. The seller confirms that the MR2 does crank just fine, but that the fuel pump will need to be replaced before it can fire off. The interior is in immaculate condition, especially for a car that’s been sitting for a while and with close to 60,000 miles. The grippy MR2 bucket seats are in fine shape, and the car retains its stock shift knob and steering wheel. Despite the clean condition, the seller reports that both the radiator and the mufflers have rotted out and will need replacing.

The MR2 is in Illinois, which means the future next owner better inspect the underside before lodging a bid. A college professor may have good tastes in cars, but they rarely have the luxury of parking one car for summer duty and another for winter use. The Toyota Genuine Parts jacket is a perfect gift for the MR2 enthusiast that will bring this clean example home, and hopefully they will wear it proudly at the first in-person car show gathering they attend – along with the authentic leather driver’s gloves that were also found in this time-capsule coupe. Which generation  MR2 is your favorite?


  1. Ralph

    Too bad this is a non A/C car. Or I would want this one very much, especially if the underside checks out well. Been looking for one this clean appearing for a long time.
    These things cornered like a go cart and were damn near as fun to drive.
    Toyota built some sweet ones back then.

    Like 3
    • Jon.in.Chico

      Sold these when they came out new … what was fun was the stick shift – except for reverse and fifth, just flick it with your fingers and it went into gear … the Spanish guys called them “Senior Dos” …

      Like 3
    • Lothar... of the Hill People

      Why do you say it is not an A/C car? I see a blue A/C button on the dashboard…

      Like 2
      • Ralph

        Thanks for your good eyes. Better learn to look more closely.

        Like 0
  2. Skorzeny

    These are unbelievably fun to drive and this is an absolute bargain.

    Like 5
  3. grant

    This professor apparently had the luxury of parking it for 20 years…

    Like 6
  4. bobhess bobhess Member

    Putting AC in it isn’t that difficult. Hanging the compressor on the engine probably more work than installing the condenser and evaporator unit as you don’t have an engine up front to work around. Nice car.

    Like 1
  5. sparkster

    I bought a 1989 MR2 supercharged with 143,000 miles at a auction back in the 90’s for $1500. The best $1500 I have ever spent. What a blast I had for two months before I sold it. I thought these all came with A/C ? I still miss that car.

    Like 3
  6. CJinSD

    $7,500 is a great price if it isn’t rusty and the engine is sound.

    Like 1
  7. Rod Plapp

    I was selling for a Toyota dealer and was a consistent top tier seller. It still took me three months of cajoling management to get one at our employee discount when they came out in 85.Had the Aqua Blue.Great as a second car. Swapped it for 4Runner months later needing more room.Wish I still had both.

    Like 3
  8. 370zpp 370zpp Member

    If this is the original paint/color, that would make this one fairly uncommon.

    Loved my 86, even if it was red.

    Like 2
  9. DayDreamBeliever DayDreamBeliever

    Anyone who has resurrected a car after a very long slumber will know the headaches which can arise, and the costs to treat them.

    Currently at $8100, the reserve has apparently been met. Silly of the seller, with all of that “as found” baloney. The sale is to extract maximum profit with minimum investment.

    Mentioned in the text is that “the radiator and mufflers have rusted through..” Exhaust is of little consequence, but the radiator issue should give one pause. i wonder what the water jackets inside of the engine look like? Aluminum can oxidize severely with a chemical PH imbalance in the coolant. Be disappointed, but not shocked it the engine is toast.

    Like 2
    • steve

      You are so correct, that “fuel pump” can quickly escalate to fuel tank, fuel sender, fuel pump, fuel injectors..

      Like 2
  10. t-bone BOB

    Item location:
    Murphysboro, Illinois

    Like 1
  11. Mark Kiesow

    I have a fuel tank/pump/sender if someone from BaT wins the auction.

    Like 0
    • Mark Kiesow

      Meant to say Barnfinds…

      Like 1
  12. t-bone BOB

    Ended: Jun 12, 2021 , 2:56PM
    Winning bid:US $8,100.00
    [ 25 bids ]

    Like 0

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