The Toyota Celica belongs to a class of sport compact cars that has seen quite a bit of changes in its 36 year history. Although the Celica was discontinued in 2006, it still has a large fan base that is frequently seen driving in the seventh generation body style with after-market body kits. The Toyota Celica features two optional four-cylinder engines with varying degrees of horsepower.
The Celica is a Japanese import that was assembled in Tahara, Aichi, Japan, from December 1970 to April 2006; it has since been replaced by the Scion tC. It is considered a 2 + 2 sports car, which means that it is specifically designed for the driver and front-seat passenger; although it offers two seats in the back, it lacks the legroom of a compact sedan. The largest engine available in the recent Celica model is the 1.8 liter I4, which is capable of producing 190 horsepower. CNNMoney.com ranked the Celica in their list of cars with the best mileage.
The Toyota Celica has seen its fair share of changes since it was first introduced in 1970, most notably its body design. The earliest Celica shared a similar front-engine layout as the Toyota Corolla at that time, as well as the characteristic box-like shape. In 1981, fuel injection became the standard on the North American version, along with its stylish redesign. To further its development as a compact sports car, Toyota drastically altered its appearance in 1989 with a more rounded front end with the same pop-up lights from the earlier fourth generation. Its sportiest redesign began with the seventh and last generation in 1999.
The last generation Toyota Celica featured two optional 1.8 liter I4 engines with optional 4-speed automatic or 5- and 6-speed manual transmissions. It was also given new options for the interior that included side-impact airbags, 6-disc CD changer, leather seating and floor mats. Exterior options such as fog lights, ABS, rear spoilers and low-beam headlights were also offered.
Because of the Toyota's dedication to its Celica brand, it has obtained many awards in its lifetime. It has won the Motor Trend Import of the Year Award in 1976 and 1978, as well as being one of Consumer's Digest Ten Best Cars in 1984. In 2001, U.S. Consumer Reports rated the Celica GT-S as Best Sports Coupe", followed by the 2002 U.S. Consumer Reports as the "Most Reliable Sporty Car".
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