1992 Toyota JZZ Soarer
Available for: $11,995
Stock Number: 4782
When Toyota entered the luxury coupe market with the Soarer model, it was an instant hit. The comfortable, powerful, and reliable two-door model sent Mercedes and BMW back to the drawing board when it came to its luxury/sports market. Back at this point in time everyone was slapping turbos and cranking up the power regardless of what it was going in. In return, we wound up seeing a ton of killer options, with Toyota among the top tier of them all. While the first generation of the Lexus SC is a familiar face here in the US, like always we were only offered the watered-down versions. Back home in the land of the rising sun, you got the exponentially more versatile 1JZ-GTE. With its sleek and sophisticated styling, this is one of those cars that never seemed to date itself. The bodywork has been kept all stock since there's no use in messing with a good thing. Finished in Toyota's Diamond Pearl White (051) the classic color sets off this luxury coupe perfectly. The paint itself is in pretty good condition, however, there are a few stone chips as you'd expect to find on any 28-year-old car. Gold wheels on a white car are just one of those looks that never seems to go out of style so a set of 18" 5zigen Heidfeld wheels wrapped in fresh rubber replace the bland stock ones. The gold and polished lip really pops against the classic white body and do a much better job of filling the wheel wells. It looks like a set of lowering springs were added to help cut down on some of the wheel gap without getting too aggressive on the ride like coilovers can be. Barring a typical door ding or two there's not much to complain about on the actual body itself.
Since the Soarer was designed to be a proper luxury tourer the interior came packed with all of the amenities of the time. The tan cloth interior is a go-to color choice for these. While generally stock there have been some tweaks. Specifically, the tan leather seat covers for the front and rear to offer an extra layer of protection and to spruce things up a bit. You can tell that the covers are an aftermarket addition, however, they fit far better than your typical cheap Autozone covers that fit more like a trash bag you tied down. The covers have seen some sun fading over the years and there is a tear on the driver's bolster which you can spot in the photos. Luckily the covers have taken the abuse, sparing the original seats underneath. The seats do feel good, as in there isn't your bolster breakdown on the seat cushions or concerns like that, though we haven't seen the actual seats underneath since these covers are particularly time-consuming to put on. The center console was wrapped in a carbon fiber vinyl which adds a little bit of a sporty touch, and the rest of the console is in black leather. There are a few seam splits on the very top, but they're primarily skewed from sight with the pop-out nav screen. Behind that is also your climate control screen, though, like most Soarers it has become rather pixelized so being able to read it is rather challenging. Luckily the system is largely automatic so you simply have to adjust the temperature based on feel as opposed to the Celcius readout. Since the radios only have so much use here stateside most will look to replace it down the road with something more compatible with your current accessories like Bluetooth and Carplay. Swapping out that system would also make it easier to access all of the manual controls for the climate control as well. In keeping with the sportier feel of the 1JZ the steering wheel was replaced with a much sleeker Momo Race piece which feels great in the hand. It also makes the view of the digital dash a bit cleaner. The rest of the interior is in pretty good shape. The carpets for instance are free of any egregious stains and the headliner is in good condition as well. The passenger side door card does have the typical split along the top which is a chronic issue with Soarers. The driver's side panel also has a cracked piece of plastic along where the door pull is so it does have some give when you go to close the door, but it doesn't have much impact on its use. Being a proper GT power windows, mirrors, and door locks were all standard and still operate as they should.
What really made the Soarer such a stellar performer was the addition of the twin-turbo, inline-six that was never offered here in the US. While the SC300/400 were good cars, the Soarer was great. When it comes to engines, there isn't a much better sounding and performing option than the 1JZ-GTE. This twin-turbo 2.5L straight-six is arguably one of the best sounding engines to have ever been mass-produced. If that wasn't enough making more power is simple and relatively inexpensive. With a mere 104K verified miles this one is only just getting its beak wet. A reliable 400whp 1JZ is not uncommon and is tame enough to daily drive. On the other hand the performance out of the box with just simple bolt-ons is more than adequate for most. The intake has been upgraded to a Blitz style open filter intake which gives off all the turbo noises that we know and love. Being a proper GT car this one is fitted with an easy-shifting auto trans. While these can be turned into drift monsters, most people are simply in search of an enjoyable car to jump in and cruise which makes the auto so much more appealing. The trans engages without any hesitation and easily sends the power to the rear wheels. Since the suspension has had some help without going to the extreme the ride is still great. The brakes are more than confident for a car pushing nearly 300hp out of the box. Of course, like all of our vehicles, we've gone over it mechanically to ensure that a turn-key experience. Aside from the default oil change we've also gone ahead and put in a fresh set of plugs to make sure the 1J is firing correctly. One test drive is all it takes to show you why the 1JZ powered cars blew away the SC's that we got stateside. Combining a level of luxury, dependability, and performance rarely seen makes this an ideal daily driver.
*California Residents: In order to register a Grey Market vehicle in the state of California then it will have to be made CARB complaint first. CARB certifications will have to be performed within the state. Depending on the vehicle and any existing modifications will affect the pricing. Typically CARB compliance will range between 5-10K. Additional information can be found on the California Air Resources Board website.