1988 Toyota Celica - Owner Experience

joelejoele Member Posts: 6
edited February 2014 in Toyota
Anyone with Celicas? I have a 88 GT model with
tremendous mileage (366,612 to be exact!)and a
great track record. I purchased the car when it
was a year old and had no major probelems with the
engine or the tranny. Although it's not the
fastest car in its league, I do think that Celicas
can keep up with other cars such as third
generation Preludes and 240SX's. I'm no die hard
Toyota fan, but I can honestly say that a car with
366,612 miles on it's original engine and rebuilt
tranny (206,000) is consider what may be the best
used hatchback for 3 to 4 grand. What do you all


  • bnormannbnormann Member Posts: 335
    What engine does this Celica have? The current Celica gets slammed for low power from it's 2.2 liter engine.

    It really is too bad the performance on the new models doesn't match the looks. Of course it looks like a 1960s Ferrari, so maybe this is all just wishful thinking.

    Does anybody know if there is a turbo or supercharger kit for the current model Celica?

  • joelejoele Member Posts: 6
    the 88 model has a 2.0 liter, 16 valve that pumps up approximately 115hp. If you're lucky, you can find a good used ALL Trac Turbo model that pumps out at least 190hp with its inline 4, 2.0 liter engine. Too bad the current celica seems like a sheep dressed in wolf's clothing, but if you try calling Toyota Racing Development (TRD), you can probable find a turbo kit.

  • oh2btiggeroh2btigger Member Posts: 1
    I used to have an 87 Celica GT, and I absolutely loved it. When I totalled the car in an accident last year it had about 130,000 on it, and all I'd ever had to do on it was replace the alternator. On the other hand, in the year since I've had my Talon (I had thought it would be a good replacement) I've replaced the idle error engine motor ($350.00) the water pump (50.00) and most recently the whole engine (2,000.00). Talk about an expensive alternative. If I could have my old Celica back, even though it is way older and has so many more miles, I would take it in a heartbeat. Even if it's not the fastest car out there, the reliability can't be beat :)
  • TakaTaka Member Posts: 4
    I have well over 120K on it (yes, I'm averaging close to 27K per year)and so far, it is one of my best investment. Here's my take on Pros and Cons of my 94 Celica (which you can use as a gauge if you are interested in buying 98-99 Celicas as not much has changed since then):


    1. Reliability - No problem what's so ever. All it requires is the usual oil change and other routine maintenance.

    2. Handling - This car hangs corners like its on rails. You really got to push it in order for your tires to even screech.

    3. Gas mileage - I'm still getting 28 to 29mpg (mostly highway driving). Considering I have a real lead foot, the mpg I been getting impresses me.

    4. Styling - I know this is subjective but I still get positive comments on how sporty it looks.

    5. Transmission - it's the most precise stick shift I've driven (compared to 200sx, 240sx, Prelude, Maxima, Passat, etc.).

    6. Sound System - Even with only 6 speakers, the sound system in this car could compete with my Onkyo home stereo system.


    1. Power - Yes, you only get 135HP (130HP in CA)and you're not going to beat the Eclipse, Prelude, or even Neon in 0-60 times. However, it does have a good pick up and 0-60 in 8 seconds is still not bad.

    2. Headroom - There isn't any, especially if you get sunroof. I'm 5'7" and with the sunroof I have, I'm barely comfortable. I can't imagine anybody over 6' sit in this car.

    3. No real rear seats - This may not really be negative along as you know you're buying a car that has room for 2 adults + 2 cats.

    4. Price - bit pricey for a 135HP/130HP sport coupe.

    Hope this helps :)
  • mznmzn Member Posts: 727
    taka, thanks for sharing your review! It is great to have such good first-hand data.

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