Today's car of the day comes from craftymore's collection and is Maisto's 2005 Toyota Celica GTS.
The Toyota Celica name has been applied to a series of sports compact coupes made by the Japanese company Toyota. The name is ultimately derived from the Latin word coelica meaning "heavenly" or "celestial".
Throughout its life span the Celica has been powered by various four-cylinder engines. The most significant change occurred in August 1985, when the car's drive layout was changed from rear wheel drive to front wheel drive. During the first three generations, American market Celicas were powered by various versions of Toyota's R series engines. The four-wheel drive turbocharged model (designated All-trac in the United States or GT-Four elsewhere) was produced from 1986 to 1999. Variable Valve Timing came in late 1997 Japanese models, and became standard in all models from 2000 on. Through seven generations, the model has gone through many revisions and design forks, including the Toyota Celica Supra (later known as the Toyota Supra). The Celica was available as notchback and liftback coupes, as well as a convertible.
In late 1999, Toyota began production and sales of the seventh generation Celica. It closely resembled the XYR concept with the exception of the front bumper and rear spoiler. The 2000 model year Celica was an element of Toyota Project Genesis, an effort to bring younger buyers to the marque in the United States. Toyota took time to lighten the car and lower cost whenever possible. Power window and door lock controls were placed in the center console so only 1 set was necessary for both doors. Initial moonroofs were made of polymer plastic instead of the traditional glass.
In the US and Canada, two models were offered; the base model GT and the sportier GT-S. All models are in liftback only body shape. In the interest of light weight, optional sunroofs were polymer plastics instead of glass. In later models, the sunroofs were made of glass, probably for cost reasons. All models featured dual front airbags, daytime running lights (DRL) with auto-on parking and headlights, and 4 cup holders; two in the front and two in the rear. Rear seats were contoured for only 2 passengers and can split down 50/50 to increase cargo capacity. Two-speed front wipers had variable intermittent adjustment. The rear wiper had a single speed and fixed intermittent speed. Windshield and rear window washers were also standard. Options include ABS, rear spoiler, fog lights, HID low beam headlights, upgraded JBL stereo system, 6-disc CD changer, leather seat surfaces, side-impact airbags, floor mats, vehicle intrusion protection (VIP) alarms with door lock/unlock feature, cargo net, and hatchback cargo cover. The Celica had a center-mounted stack for the windows and locks to make it cheaper for young buyers.
The GT-S was powered by the 2ZZ-GE engine rated at 180 bhp (134 kW; 182 PS) at 7600 rpm and 133 lb·ft (180 N·m) torque at 6800 rpm. The engine featured Toyota’s VVTL-i (Variable Valve Timing and Lift control with intelligence). A second stage valve lift control for intake was added to the variable intake cam phase timing. This is similar to Honda’s VTEC but was more advanced because of the variable phase timing that Honda had not yet released (i-VTEC). Variants of this engine were offered in the Matrix XRS, Corolla XRS and the Lotus Elise (with a Lotus ECU which added 10 bhp). Buyers had the option of a 4-speed automatic or 6-speed manual transmissions. The base tire size was 205/55/15 but the optional size offered was 205/50/16. The tire upgrade was merely US$42 so most GT-S models had the optional wheels and tires. All GT-S models had 4-wheel disc brakes and metal pedals. Manual transmission shifters and all steering wheels were upgraded to leather. Hatchback cargo covers were standard along with fog lights for models without the “Action Package.”
Imagine for a moment if Ford discontinued their iconic car, the Mustang. It might send the entire brand in a downward spiral image wise. I think in a highly simplified statement this occurred with Toyota after discontinuing the Celica upon the end of the 7th generation in 2006. Instead of designing a new Celica, Toyota launched a new youth aimed brand called Scion and released the tC in 2005. In my view, Toyota never recovered image wise from this move.