Fancy a summer of fun with the underrated Toyota MR2?
The Toyota MR2 is an underrated gem. They hark back to the days when the Japanese manufacturer was still making interesting cars: at one time Toyota had the MR2, the Celica and the Supra in its line-up. For years, it sadly abandoned its sporting efforts to concentrate on family cars and only recently returned with the GT86.
It’s the MR2 roadster we’re talking about here, though, and, cards on the table, the writer of this blog owned two MR2s in his younger, relatively carefree days, so he’s slightly biased. He still misses K570 DRO to this day: the low sitting position, the way the engine sits right behind your head, the sense of occasion every time you get in it and, most of all, those pop-up headlights.
You find you let far more people out at junctions when it gives you an excuse to pop those headlights up!
We have a newer-shape roadster in stock here, and it’s a fantastic example. As with the BMW M3 we recently featured, it comes with an optional hard-top, to help in the winter months. It also comes with fun, sporty RWD handling. The similarities probably end there – this comes with around 130bhp as opposed to the 330+ in the BMW.
However, that’s not to say this can’t be a huge amount of fun. The handling is great – look how little overhang there at the front and back of the car, the wheels are virtually in the corners. This makes it great fun as soon as you hit a B-road (or roundabout, or basically any corners, anywhere). It won’t win any drag races (on private land, of course) but it is a really light, nimble car with a rev-happy 1.8 engine.
Toyota made no secret of the fact that it had leaned very heavily on the design of the Porsche Boxster for its third version of the MR2, and you can see the design cues – especially those striking air intakes behind the doors. The design has aged very well – it’s a lovely-looking car and could give a careful owner many, many years of fun.
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