Toyota Corolla Coupé GT. Abandoned hero status of a covered sleeper

Toyota Corolla Coupe GT Twin Cam 16

A funny thing, such a Toyota Corolla Coupé GT Twin Cam 16. But if you tell that the value shoots towards the thirty mille, people are nailed to the ground. After rather mediocre interest, this rear-wheel drive sleeper has been totally hyped for the past ten years. What gives the Toyota Corolla Coupé GT AE86 that sudden hero status?

Text & photography: Aart van der Haagen

Certainly, your car heart goes crazy when you think of a 955 kg light sports machine without lifes. With rear-wheel drive and a revolving sixteen-valve engine of 124 hp. That alone does not help the Toyota Corolla Coupé GT AE86 to such a status that Toyota actually refers to it with the 21e-century GT86. 

For a ruined Corolla Coupé with a tough life in rallying, people now dare to ask for 25 grand. And an original does even more. Well, looking for the explanation for this idioterie. History teaches that iconic cars have an extraordinary history of competition. And in the case of the Toyota Corolla Coupé GT AE86, that is entirely correct. Because he was a credit in racing, rallying and the drifting scene. 

In addition, the Sprinter Trueno version, which was never delivered in the Netherlands, was given a heroic role in the Japanese manga television series Initial D. In addition, young generations of car enthusiasts know the model from various racing games. Nice, but see an original Toyota Corolla Coupé GT AE86. Well, Louwman's Toyota World succeeded in that mission at the end of November 2019. And acquired a Dutch-delivered Corolla Coupé GT Twin Cam 16 from 1986. All this in the insanely delicious red-black combination. 34 years and 115.000 kilometers of life experience, you hardly read it from him. Although there were some technical and cosmetic procedures to put it back on top. 

Driving the Toyota Corolla Coupé GT AE86

The heroic stories about the AE86 arouse an irrepressible urge to steer a part with it. He immediately puts you in the mood. Because the height-adjustable leather sports steering wheel extends far into the interior. While you sink deep into a nice tub with a tilting seat and cheeks that you can clamp closer to your body. 

Even before the growling Twin Cam engine can get full speed, something that he likes very much, the Toyota Corolla Coupé GT AE86 can easily be tempted into an old-fashioned transverse driving style. He takes his butt out eagerly. Is just as easy to correct with its lightness and spacious wheel deflection. Helped by a wonderfully precise and direct control. Without the clouding of an reinforcer. 

Then chase the fierce sixteen-valve high. Trouble-free over 7000 rpm before the red area starts. Then the very fast AE86 makes it a complete circus performance and you never want to go straight through life again. You don't have to dedicate an animated series to it. This is lifelike enjoyment. How sorry that this Toyota Corolla Coupé GT Twin Cam 16 is so far out of range. 

Also read:
- Toyota Corolla 30 de Luxe by Kees Mieremet. Originality from 1976
- The Toyota MR2, a special sports fan from Japan
- Toyota Corolla Special De Luxe (1968)
- Suzuki Cappuccino, intense caffeine shot. Even more espresso
- From The Eighties: The Subaru XT Turbo 4WD

Toyota Corolla Coupe GT Twin Cam 16
Yes, an economy indicator to remind you to drive quietly
Nice how the - folding - rear seat continues in the side panels
The backrests are lighter in color than the seats as standard, so they do not fade
Toyota Corolla Coupe GT Twin Cam 16
On the passenger side, the T-VIS intake system with four butterfly valves
Toyota Corolla Coupe GT Twin Cam 16
Toyota Corolla Coupe GT Twin Cam 16


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  1. Nice article. My best friend and I have one. Original and stainless. Silver / black. Bought from an enthusiast who had to sell his wife's car to buy a new project. The car was unfortunately modified by him for a more tuning look. Sports suspension, ditto exhaust and a stronger engine, specially imported from Japan (160 hp). Fortunately, all original parts and the engine were still there. We got the car completely original again. There are still some optical details in ex- and interior. But what a fun car to drive!

    Actually, we are busy reliving the iconic cars from our youth (when we had no money for it :-)). Earlier, for example, we already had a De Lorean in untimeless condition. That is why we eventually sell these again. For one reason or another we always choose cars that are difficult to estimate in terms of value for the wider public. When we told acquaintances that we wanted to charge about € 25.000, they thought we had gone mad. For a refined 1986 Corolla ?! Well, it is a small pond for enthusiasts.

    So we immediately bought this AMK! Maybe your expert opinion will help. Of course we deliver this copy with the car!

  2. Is certainly a beautiful car, unfortunately (and therefore perhaps the high price due to rarity) not often sold in the Netherlands, was quite pricey compared to the standard models.
    During that period we had 2 in maintenance, they broke the grind of the "normal" a bit, just like the MR2 a little later. But you didn't see them often for maintenance or repairs either, not yet.

    • Speaking of maintenance. We renewed the differential because we heard some noise. Try to find that part. We ended up at CAR in Nijkerkerveen. They had one by chance.

      They told us a bizarre story. In the late 90s and early 20s they had brought one GT after another to the scrapyard. Tuned, worn, etc. Were then, even for parts hardly worth anything. Now they would have liked more donor cars. Because they never expected the value development either.

  3. Seems a very nice car. My first car was one Triumph Dolomite Sprint, although 4 doors, but was not so far apart in terms of power / weight / rear breakout. Pure Fun! This Toyota reminds a bit of my current Maserati Racing, but the latter is longer and a lot more elegant. Nice article!

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