As more and more car nuts are noticing, the time when Japanese manufacturers were trying to find their way in the North American market are rather interesting – really a truer expression of their country of origin than the later cars, which were fully adapted to North American tastes, and often designed and built there. Early Japanese efforts in the 1960s and 1970s had themes like funky futuristic styling or bizarro-world interpretations of American and European design themes, looking familiar yet unfamiliar. Check out this 1974 Toyota Corona Mark 2 wagon for sale for $1500 in San Diego, CA.
Check out the oddball front grill that’s perhaps reminiscent of Pontiac’s twin-nostril styling, the odd hubcaps, and the strange belt line that clearly shows this car’s sedan origins. The MX29 wagon was powered by the 2.6 liter 4M straight six, putting out 122hp through a standard 4-speed transmission. This car also features a period San Diego Padres logo on the door, suggesting either rabid baseball enthusiast ownership or one-time team support duties. Either way, an implied lifetime in San Diego should help with the body condition, assuming it was not near the sea.
The car is said to have a blown head gasket, but to start easily, and has a new fuel pump, carburetor, voltage regulator, alternator, water pump, and reconditioned radiator. While the fun yellow 1970s safety color is dirty and faded, picture this car polished to within an inch of its life, lowered over wider wheels, with a throaty exhaust – it would be like catnip at any JCCS show, and you might even stand to turn a profit if you’re careful. Or is that giving this old boat a little too much credit?