Be it Levin, Trueno, Corolla, GT, SR-5 or GT Apex, 30 years ago today our favourite Toyota was ‘born’.
In a period where most manufacturers (and even Toyota themselves) were moving to the more cost-efficient front wheel drive platform, the last RWD Corolla to be built was given a proper send off: A new compact, lively, lightweight chassis paired to Toyota’s new punchy twincam electronic fuel injected engine, the now legendary 4A-GE.
I’ve lived a third of my life now with my AE86 and consequently it’s also been a third of her life too. Good times and great memories driving together.
Whatever you do today, make sure to give your AE86 some special love. Granted, yours may not be an ’83 model, but you can still celebrate your own good times with a special polish, tune up or simply a good old blast through your favourite canyon road.
So Happy Birthday AE86! Here’s to another 30 years!
Isn’t Australia supposed to be the ‘lucky country‘? So why is it we have been bypassed on the ‘build your own’ version of the ZN6 86, the ‘RC’? Japan has embraced the ‘bare-bones’ model with open arms as almost every tuning house in the land of the rising sun grabbed one and put every combination of aftermarket parts into it.
So now that New Zealand is doing the same AND offering a slew of customisable Gran-Turismo style custom upgrades, I’m left wondering what the hell Toyota Australia is doing snoozing on getting the RC to Australian shores?
If you’re one of our Kiwi readers, check out what you can all walk down to the dealership and get at the official website here. For everyone else here in Australia and over in the US, well just visit it and cry a little I suppose.
A little bit of ingenuity and a whole lot of LEGO Technic and you have this very cool maquette of Toyota’s trusty 4A-GE engine from the AE86! Not just a pretty model, it’s got moving parts and all of the details!
Campaigned from the very first race by Taka and his wife Yoshie, he is the only driver on the grid to have driven the same chassis in every race meeting of Formula Drift since its inception in 2004.
Yeah, you read that right. After almost 10 years, the only AE86 that still arrives every event to go up against the new talent in their modern cars is Taka’s. But it’s not easy to keep coming back. He’s constantly told the time has come to step out of his beloved AE chassis into something more modern to compete to win.
The reasons he’s given? Too light. No power. Wheelbase is too short. Too old.
What does Taka think? Like a true hachiroku ‘lifer’ he is pragmatic: “You know, I should say… the car is there, but I need to drive better…. I gotta catch up with the power. I need to be the big man, or I gotta get bigger balls or whatever… but the Corolla, it’s not a handicap. Period.”
Working together with Shatsu Clothing, the AE86 Community has created this AWESOME T-shirt, representing Clubs throughout the World: 86ers.org, HR – Hachiroku.com.au, The Corolla Brotherhood, AE86irl, AE86 World, and many many more.
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Somewhat of a local legend, former olympic competitor for Yugoslavia and national cycling champion turned automobile master Tanasije Kuvalja sits in his AE86 in Zaluzani, Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina circa 1983.
Not content with only cycling victories, he turned his focus in 1977 to motorsport and was a multiple champion in the former Yugoslavia, first finding success in a Fiat 128 Sportscoupe and later an Alfa Romeo 156 ST.
Unfortunately, data for his success in the AE86 is somewhat hard to find, maybe some of our european readers can help shed some light?
Back in February, I took a trip to Japan with a bunch of friends including tuner Anthony Kellam from Kaizen Garage and Queensland AE86 drifter Sam Holz. We braved the cold morning in Osaka, jumped on the Shinkansen and set off to find the shining star of the Kyoto AE86 scene.
Illmotion has a unique grasp on some of the Canada’s cleanest builds. This time it’s Orlando Tan’s 1986 Corolla GT-S, otherwise known as a Sprinter Trueno outside of North America – but this factory-spec minter has an ace up it’s sleeve…