Friday, November 15, 2013

Friday Feature: Rare Toyota 2000GT Up for Auction

Update: The 2000GT sold for $968,000 at the November 21st "Art of the Automobile." The auction itself brought in $63 million in sales.

1967 Toyota 2000GT to cross the block at no reserve
RM Auctions
A rare 1967 Toyota 2000GT is set to go up for auction at no reserve next Thursday (November 21) through RM Auctions. The car has never been restored and was only repainted once - with the original Solar Red color. Considered the first true Japanese supercar, this 2000GT is one of only 54 in the U.S. Only 351 models were built during production, which ended in 1970. 

The 2000GT was made famous in the 1967 James Bond flick "You Only Live Twice." Word is Sean Connery was too tall to fit into the tiny car, so two 1966 convertible versions of the 2000GT were created just for the film.

"Tonight Show" host Jay Leno went to Japan last year and got a chance to get behind the wheel of the James Bond car, which is in the Toyota Museum. He posted a video of the drive on his site Jay Leno's Garage. Leno said he waited 50 years to drive the car.  

Next week, Leno or anyone else who wants to get their hands on a 2000GT, has the chance as part of RM Auctions' "Art of the Automobile." Back in 1967, this model was priced at $7,000. Now this rare vehicle is expected to sell for between $700,000 and $1 million. 

1967 Toyota 2000GT to cross the block at no reserve
RM Auctions

RM Auctions says the engine and drivetrain are original and fully functioning. It has been held in a well-respected collection in Southern California for the past decade.

Earlier this year, RM sold a lovely yellow 1967 2000GT for $1.16 million - a record for the most expensive Asian car ever sold. This Solar Red 2000GT may or may not set that type of record, but its rarity is something to appreciate nonetheless.

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