1998 Altezza GXE10

Sold: $11,295

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Stock #6251

In a historical role reversal, the Japanese decided it was time to take it to the Germans. With the release of the Celsior, BMW and Mercedes knew their days were numbered, and as Toyota ramped up production, a full on automotive assault was incoming! Taking aim at the venerable 3-Series and C-class, this Japanese 1998 Altezza was a true midsize sports sedan down to its DNA. Designed by the same man who drew up the AE86, the platform featured near 50/50 weight distribution, a slate of reliable powertrains, and handsome styling. This AS200 is finished in a stately Millennium Silver Metallic (1C0), and set off by an OEM rear spoiler and full factory optional aero. Aside from a left front fender that was replaced in Japan and a  few light dings, chips, and scuffs the paint is in good nick, and this five-seater is fresh off a recent service. Having logged a mere 100k verified and documented miles, this Altezza is in much better shape than the slate of high mileage IS300s found domestically, and is turn-key ready to rock. Athletic, reliable, and easy to maintain, this Japanese Classic is one sweet saloon that you won't want to miss out on!

The cabin is much more modern than our average import, and still looks good to this day! The small gauge hood and timepiece style dials are premium looking and incredibly unique. The driver gains a tilt adjustable steering wheel to find the ideal driving position and the low-slung sculpted dash promotes decent outward visibility. Dual SRS airbags are standard for those who may be safely conscious, and the dashboard lacks any cracking or fading. The black cloth seats are in above average shape and lack any major rips, stains or tears. They are supportive and stylish, with the gray and black tones highlighted by a polished gear lever and trim. Power folding mirrors, electric locks, and power mirrors all work in typical Toyota fashion making daily use much more enjoyable. The OEM audio supplements the inline six soundtrack terminating from under the hood and the automatic climate control system above is intuitive and works flawlessly. Cold A/C and piping hot heat can be mixed through the cabin, and the large buttons are easy to grasp and depress. The door cards, carpets, and headliner have resisted major abuse over the years, and the front OEM floor mats are on hand to protect your investment. Even the owners manuals and maintenance booklets are included with the vehicle and are located within the glovebox.

The front engine, rear-drive layout pays dividends thanks to its balance, and this communicative chassis is one of our favorites. Under the bonnet rests a silky smooth 1G-FE. Updated with VVT-i for around 35 more ponies in 1998, this straight six is fresh off an oil and filter service and churns over promptly with a twist of the key, thanks to a new 12v battery. One of our trained techs has replaced the fuel pump and sock, as we do in all of our sports cars, and the 1G feels as healthy as a horse pulling to redline. Thermal management is handled by a brand new radiator, so you don't have to feel bad winding this smooth six-cylinder out.  Acceleration was more impressive than most expect, and the Altezza can comfortably get up to highway speeds and merge safely. The ABS brakes do a wonderful job slowing this sedan down and the front rotors were just resurfaced. The suspension is compliant, predictable, and can handle the rigors of daily use and abuse. The rear differential was also flushed and new fluid installed. The original five spoke alloys are wrapped in new rubber at each corner. The new tires reduce road noise and will last for tens of thousands of miles to come. 

*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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