COAL Capsule #5: 1985 Toyota Cressida–Dependable Cruiser

Toyota Cressida 1985 coal

I’ve always had a thing for old, RWD, straight six-powered Japanese sedans, so when the opportunity to purchase this Cressida popped up, I jumped on it. Fully loaded with sunroof, digital dash, and automatic climate control, it was the best-equipped car that I had owned to date.

It had only 85k on the odometer and appeared to be in good condition, save for a massive oil leak (it was still drive-able. This car gave me respect for the 5MGE engine–very smooth and surprisingly powerful. You couldn’t even hear it running (I fixed that problem with a Magnaflow exhaust, though). The only two items missing were the five-speed, and LSD (which came with 5-speed equipped cars, along with sport seats and electronic suspension).

However, I didn’t really mind owning an automatic this time around, as this was the type of car that made you want to cruise with the seat back rather than shift for yourself. That, and well…good luck trying to find a five-speed MX73 =/. It became a real handful to take care of after a while. My initial intention was to fix the oil leak, but then it started misfiring randomly, burning more oil than it was leaking, not starting at the worst possible times and rusting, seemingly from out of nowhere. The suspension needed a complete overhaul as well. It may have had only 85k, but it must have been the hardest 85k that any car has seen before or since. At the time, my wallet couldn’t keep up with the problems, so it had to go. One good thing I can say about this car is that despite its many problems, it never left me stranded and always started….well, eventually, at least. The person who purchased the car from me performed a 7MGTE/five-speed swap and fixed all of the other problems. It still lives to this day, in Queens, NY.