1997 Toyota Celsior UCF21

Sold: $11,495

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Toyota's timeless Celsior is considered by many to be one of the finest luxury cars ever produced from Japan. It was the benchmark for reliability in its segment and comes packed full of power equipment and safety features. This 1997 is finished in Diamond White (051) and offered with a mere 62k verified and documented miles. Set off by a set of subtle factory rainguards, the body and paint are in good shape overall aside from some light dings, chips, and scuffs associated with normal use. With examples logging over a million miles, this sweet saloon is barely broken in. Fresh off a recent service, this unmolested five-seater would make for an ideal daily driver, weekend cruiser, or clean platform for a VIP build. No matter how the next chapter of this Type C will unfold, we're sure the American buyer will fall in love with this turn-key Japanese Classic.

The cabin is spacious and comes with a full slate of electric equipment. Toyota went over and beyond, even adding items like electric seat belt adjusters. Over the top, perhaps, but this is a serious luxury sedan. The driver benefits from an electric steering column and power windows, locks, and folding side mirrors. These all work as advertised, as do the electric front seats. New for 1997, SRS side airbags were made standard to match the dual units integrated into the dash. The dash itself lacks any cracking or distortion, and the gauges are nicely illuminated making them easy to read. An American Pioneer headunit makes longer hauls more enjoyable as does the factory A/C system. While the LCD display is out it can be used on auto mode for these last hot months of the year. That is not to say the cabin is perfect as there is a slight scuff on the passenger seat, light staining on the tan carpet, and the front cupholder won't unfurl. A lot of that is expected at 25 years old and there are OEM carpet mats to protect the floor against further staining. The rest of the upholstery is in an above-average shape and is lacking any major rips, stains, or tears. The door cards and headliner have been cared for in a prior life, and even the maintenance booklets and owners manuals are still sitting in the glovebox.

Under the skin the UCF21 was revised from the original design, the UCF11, to be roomier, lighter, and more efficient. The same 1UZ-FE that powered the original car rests below the bonnet although it makes a bit more power than before. Fresh off an oil and filter service, the 4.0L cranks over with the twist of the key. A new 12v battery has been installed and will last for the next few years to come. A new engine air filter ensures it breathes properly and returns decent fuel economy. A new set of serpentine belts keep the accessories powered, and the V8 idles with hardly a vibration. Torque is seamlessly fed through a buttery smooth shifting transmission to the rear wheels. Acceleration is more than adequate, and this thing sails over bumps at higher speeds and is composed on city pavement, too. The front lower ball joints and front right bellow boot were replaced with new ones, and the factory air-adjustable suspension has a new lease on life. The brakes are confident and the power steering is light enough you can move the wheel with just a finger. Four new tires were mounted and balanced to deliver tens of thousands of miles of premium grip to come. A fresh alignment was performed to top it all off as well.

*California Residents: In order to register a Grey Market vehicle in the state of California then it will have to be made CARB compliant 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.

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