Thursday, September 2, 2010

Car Style - The Toyota 2000GT

John Marine | 9/02/2010 05:51:00 AM |
Imagine a Japanese car so beautiful you swore it is European. Until you realize... it's ENTIRELY Japanese. This car was the work of both Toyota and Yamaha. It was unveiled to the world in 1965 with production ranging between 1967 to 1970. This car would be the ancestor of two future Toyotas- the Celica and the Supra. While not many were made, those who were able to see this car would appreciate how much of a beauty this car is. In fact, I saw this in Gran Turismo 2, then in real life at the 2005 Houston Auto Show. This is surely a car that is in the running for "Most Beautiful Japanese Car Ever Made," and it would be in close contention with another of my all-time favorite cars- the Datsun 240Z.





--- Car Style: The Toyota 2000GT ---
I have a picture that I've taken five years ago, but it's not all that good. So I've found this one below. Meet this Japanese beauty here:

^ from: oldtimergala.de - the Toyota 2000GT.

Toyota shown that they can make a car as beautiful and as capable as any European sports car of its day. This is a coupe with a serious fastback design. It has serious cues of Jaguar in its design. Almost as if Toyota and Yamaha were making their own Jaguar killer. Two convertible versions were made for this car, but only for the James Bond movie, "You Only Live Twice."

Exterior.

Two big auxiliary lights in chrome-lined glass encasings are up front along with the chrome-lined grills. Some more chrome is on the sides of the front bumper, and they are met with the signal lights. Up top up front are the retractable headlights. The front hood/bonnet bears the 2.0-liter Inline-6 engine pumping out 150 hp. What I love most about its design up front is just how beautifully everything flows. This car just looks like it was meant to be driven at the limit and run like the wind.

Jaguar would seriously envy the sides of this car. The sporty elegance of this car extends to the sides with little compromise in style. The car has a serious fastback design. The doors seriously look like wings on a plane when both doors are opened. They give the impression that this car can seriously fly. I personally always wondered what those doors on the sides under the side-view mirrors are for. Well, those are the battery compartments for the 2000GT. In "Tokyo Xtreme Racer 3," I put a driver number on those compartments because they look like where you should place your driver number for a race car. But... those doors on the side under the mirrors are where the batteries are placed. I say "batteries," but I think the one that houses the car's battery is the door on the left-hand side.

Completing its appeal is the rear. The only thing even close to a rear bumper are the two chromed pieces that sandwich the license plate. The two chrome-lined taillight clusters house a brake light and a signal light. You don't get much anything in rear protection. Even the Jaguar XKE had a rear chrome bumper that provided even SOME protection. The rear windshield and just the rear in general does a beautiful job in completing this car's appearance cutting through the wind at speed.


Interior.

The interior of the Toyota 2000GT is everything you'd expect... in a car of its time. The dashboard has lots of wood trim. A big steering wheel with wooden detail is very sporty, even for a car like this. Most of the dashboard from the driver's side and the center console are all in wood with plenty of chrome accents abound. Even the seats are sporty for a car of its time. Don't expect any modern creature comforts- just old-style GT car beauty. This is a two-door car, so don't worry about putting in other people. Also of chrome are the door handles and window cranks. I'd be careful trying to roll those down on a very hot day, though...





All in all, Toyota and Yamaha have collaborated to create of the most beautiful cars ever made. It was a Japanese car that could rival anything European in its day. Maybe it couldn't hold a candle to a GT Ferrari of its day, but it was certainly a car that shown that Japan can build cars just as special in concept and form as almost any European GT coupe. Considering this car is the ancestor to the Celica and Supra, the 2000GT has extra incentive as being one of the best cars ever made. I may even say this is one of the most influential Japanese cars as well. I know I've made parallels to the Jaguar XKE, but this was purely a classic in its own right. 2000GTs have even been in racing, such as the 2000GTs that raced in SCCA competition back in the day. The Toyota 2000GT is a European-looking car, but is pretty much 100% Japanese through and through.

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