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Toyota Celica GT-Four ST205 buying guide (1994-1999)

Toyota Celica GT-Four ST205 buying guide (1994-1999) Classic and Performance Car
Toyota Celica GT-Four ST205 Toyota Celica GT-Four ST205 Toyota Celica GT-Four ST205 Toyota Celica GT-Four ST205 Toyota Celica GT-Four ST205
In the land of the Japanese performance car, it can be difficult to stand out, but the Toyota Celica GT-Four of 1994 certainly managed it. As the third and final incarnation of the World Rally Championship competing all-wheel drive Celica, the ST205-generation car is by far the best-developed and most impressive road-going Celica of all time. 
Honed in the wind tunnel, the GT-Four is surprisingly aerodynamic, but perhaps the impressive fact is the functionality of the (optional) huge rear wing. Toyota claimed that this appendage created a whopping 50kg of downforce at 60mph.
A four-wheel drive system with neutral 50/50 torque split, potent 2.0-litre turbocharged engine and coupe styling combine to produce an enticing package. The ST205 was engineered to win rallies, making it an extremely effective road car. It was expensive in the UK, which limited sales, while tough competition from the Ford Escort RS Cosworth and the much more practical Subaru Impreza means that the vast majority of cars were sold in Japan.
In the early days the car was a huge success on the rally circuit. Despite being penalized for cheating in the WRC (a clever device was fitted to allow more air into the engine than the permitted restrictor would allow) the car went on to be a moderate success in the hands of privateers too. Despite this, values of the ST205 remain affordable. 
On the road today the Celica still impresses with some serious cross-country performance. Firm suspension, precise steering and strong brakes all work well, while the boosty power is exhilarating – even if the soundtrack isn’t particularly great. The five-speed ‘box offers well-spaced gearing for devastating acceleration and surprisingly good motorway cruising, while the four-wheel drive system means traction and grip are never an issue. 

Which Celica to buy?

The big dilemma will be whether to go for original UK car or Japanese import. If you’re looking for an extremely original example, then seeking out a well cared for UK car might be easiest, although choosing an import opens up many more possibilities, including later models. 
There are various spec differences between UK and JDM-spec Celicas, so it’s worth understanding these before making a purchase. Japanese cars produce a slightly more potent 255bhp (due to being set up to run on higher-octane fuel) compared to the 239bhp of the UK cars.
If you really like the idea of owning a Group A homologation special, then it’s worth seeking out one of the 2500 WRC edition cars. While the spec only varies slightly, the kudos of explaining the fact your car has a de-activated anti-lag and water injection system installed is priceless. Power output is officially the same, although some reckon that the WRC cars were slightly ‘healthier’ from the factory.

Performance and specs

Toyota Celica GT-Four (ST205 UK spec)
Engine 1998cc, four-cylinder turbo
Power 239bhp @ 6000rpm
Torque 223lb ft @ 4000rpm
Top speed 152mph
0-60mph 6.3sec
Fuel consumption 28.8mpg
Gearbox Five-speed manual

Common problems

• Perhaps the most common concern with the ST205 Celica is the car’s complex multi-link front suspension. This provides fantastic handling characteristics when in good shape, but if worn out expect a wayward front end. 
• Unless there is proof that the ‘Fig-8’ links have been replaced, they will likely need to be. Genuine Toyota parts are the only option, and with the lower arms that will probably need to be changed as well, it’s almost £600 in parts alone, so can significantly dent a modest budget.
• If you hear a loud clonking on full lock or over bumps, don’t panic straight away though. This could also be the crush tubes that often deform if you hit a nasty pothole in the road. It’s a relatively cheap and easy fix. 
• On the test drive, you should also listen for any knocking of clonking from the rear of the car. If you do hear this, it is almost certainly the rubber rear diff mount. It’s not a huge job for any garage to undertake. 
• The 3S-GTE engine is an extremely strong and long-lasting engine in standard form, but regular oil changes are a must. Listen for any knocking signifying worn bottom end bearings
• Turbos can fail, and are more likely to if the car has been driven hard and not given time to cool down properly. Check for the usual signs of blue exhaust smoke, indicating worn seals.
• Check that proper bright red Toyota anti-freeze is at the correct level in the top-mounted intercooler. 
• Tuned engines are common, as more than 300bhp is possible on standard engine internals. It’s not as straightforward as some other Japanese cars, and poorly tuned examples might not last too long. 
• Gearboxes are strong, but the syncros can wear out, so check for crunching going up and down through the gears. Clutches can wear if abused off the line, so check for any signs of slipping.
• Rust is sadly not uncommon, so check all the usual places like sills, jacking points, door bottoms and rear wheel arches, as these are often first to go. 

Model history

1994: ST205 Celica GT-Four goes on sale.
Early 1996: A minor refresh sees a few changes, such as twin front airbags, side skirts, different alloy wheel design and revised rear spoiler brought in.
October 1996: Sales of the GT-Four stop in Europe.
Late 1997: The ST205 once again undergoes a facelift, freshening up the model for the Japanese market. This includes new front projector headlights, clear rear lights and different trim for the interior. 
August 1999: The last Celica ST205 rolls off the production line, as the factory prepares for the next-generation Celica

Owners clubs, forums and websites

- www.gt4oc.net
- www.gtfours.co.uk

Summary and prices

Despite a few specialist aspects, the GT-Four is still a Toyota, which means that you can rely on the absolutely fantastic build quality. Prices in the UK do vary quite a bit, but it would be advisable to stay away from anything priced lower than £2500 unless you’re looking for a project. 
Around £4000 is enough to find a cracking example, with some dealers asking around £6500-£7000 for the very best. The later Japanese imports still carry a premium, so expect to pay around £3500-£8500 depending on mileage, spec and condition.
Toyota Celica GT-Four ST205 Toyota Celica GT-Four ST205 Toyota Celica GT-Four ST205 Toyota Celica GT-Four ST205 Toyota Celica GT-Four ST205
Last updated: 6th Oct 2016
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Toyota Celica cars for sale

22 Search results
Toyota Celica
275 23000 GBP
  • Toyota Celica

    £1,695 £1,695

    Toyota Celica 1.8 VVT-I 2002 PlateMOT 25 May 2018Very nice Celica, lots of history, drives without fault, priced to sell.Lots of other cars in stock. Call 02392617444

    • Mileage: 113000 mi
    • Engine size: 1794
    For sale
    Trojan Cars
  • Toyota Celica 1.8 VVTL-i T Sport (189 BHP)

    £275 £275

    Non runner - needs head gasket replacing. MOT 28th Sept 2017, no advisories, 189 bhp, leather interior. New battery, engines starts, fuel gauge and central locking not working plus small crack on windscreen. If you have the time, tools and replacement parts, this car will be a pleasure to own and drive as these sports cars are fast though handle well and usually very reliable!

    • Mileage: 133000 mi
    • Engine size: 1800
    For sale

    £1,175 £1,175

    ** TOYOTA CELICA 2002 1.8 VVTI 140BHP **£117507480827844 140bhpMOT till May 201817 wheels with new tyres Good brakes all around 130k on the clock with extensive service history LOADS OF PAPER WORK! Old mot's, service history, bills etc.  Bodywork is in average condition, few marks on front and rear bumper, no dents though. 6 speed gearbox, smooth changes and no noises while driving. Pulls hard on every gear! Sony double din cd player Leather seats Air conProjector headlight lenses LOCATION - EASTBOURNE, EAST SUSSEX Any questions just message me.

    • Mileage: 130150 mi
    • Engine size: 1794
    For sale

    £3,995 £3,995

    2005 Celica 1.8 vvti, finished in silver with Black leather sports seats;;Only 1 lady owner from new, with full Toyota main dealer service history and only 43000 miles from new;;Electric sunroof, air con, fully refurbished 16" Alloys;;Full book pack, 3 keys, invoice file, recent Toyota exhaust and new Yokohama front tyres ;;Very rare now with low miles and no previous owners

    • Mileage: 43000 mi
    • Engine size: 1.794
    For sale

    £1,899 £1,899

    This is a great looking 1 owner celica with history and an amazing condition for age and great low mileage .this car won't be here long if you want a nice sports coupe get on the phone and make an appointment quickly

    • Mileage: 62006 mi
    • Engine size: 1.794
    For sale
  • Toyota Celica

    £2,295 £2,295

    Air Conditioning, Alarm, Remote Central Locking, Central Locking, Cloth Upholstery, Front Centre Armrest, Head Restraints, Height Adjustable Seat, Folding Rear Seats, Adjustable Steering Column, Power Steering, ABS, Multiple Airbags, Front Fog Lamps, Rear Spoiler, Rear Wash/wipe, Electric Mirrors, Electric Windows, CD Player, Radio, 16'' Alloys, Full service history Toyota Celica VVTI Coupe, Just received a New MOT, Service + Full Health Check from the garage. Air/Con, Modified Exhaust, After Market Bonnet & Spoiler, Standard Engine & more. All manuals. With Only 58701 Miles. Only - £2295.....Check out our website we have over 40+ cars for sale to suit all budgets www.purbrookcarsales.co.uk**We pride ourselves on selling good quality cars at great prices. We are experts in offering car finance to customers across the UK.**If you have had trouble getting a used car elsewhere then give us a call, see if we can help, we have flexible finance deals with monthly payments to suit all budgets, Fill out extended finance form on our website

    • Mileage: 58701 mi
    • Engine size: 1794
    For sale
  • Toyota Celica

    £1,495 £1,495

    Full Leather, Electric Sunroof, CD Player, Electric Windows, Electric Mirrors, Power Steering, ABS, Multiple Airbags, Central Locking, Colour Coded Body, Front Fog Lamps, Rear Wash/wipe, 16'' Alloys TOYOTA CELICA 1.8 VVTI COUPE 3 DOOE, SILVER, 89,810 MILES, FULL LEATHER, E/SUN ROOF, CD PLAYER, E/WINDOWS, C/LOCKS, ABS, MULTI AIR BAGS, E/MIRRORS, R/W/WIPE, 16'' ALLOY WHEELS, £230 A YEAR ROAD TAX

    • Mileage: 89810 mi
    • Engine size: 1794
    For sale
  • Toyota Celica

    €23,000(£20,214.70) €23,000(£20,214.70)

    This Celica TA23 is from the 1,5 (23 series) generation. The 1.588 cc engine with a twin carburettor, the 2T-B delivered new 86 HP. The Coupe has the same basic shape as first generation but slightly longer between the front wheels and the doors. The front style introduced in 1973 on the Japanese models now used in all markets (lengthened to suit new chassis). Also it got a new style dash. Finished in British Racing Green with Brown interior this older restoration is immaculate. Excellent detailed engine bay. This beautifully Celica was imported to Netherlands in 2013. More information on: www.kucarfa.nl

    • Year: 1977
    • Mileage: 800 mi
    • Engine size: 1.6
    For sale
  • Toyota Celica

    £1,675 £1,675


    • Mileage: 107447 mi
    • Engine size: 1794
    For sale
  • TOYOTA CELICA 1.8 VVT-I 3DR Coupe 2005

    £4,500 £4,500

    1 Lady Owner Plus Dealer Demo - Just 40.000 Miles - Serviced - Full MOT - Getting Rare. Test Drives A Pleasure - Viewing 7 Days By Appointment, 3 months warranty, 12 months MOT, Last serviced on 13/01/2017 at 40,000 miles, Part service history, Good bodywork, Black Full leather interior - Excellent Condition, Tyre condition Good, 3 Months Orchard Parts and Labour Warranty Upgrade to 12 Months Nationwide For GBP 99, Part Service History - Just Serviced, Full MOT, Full Book Pack - 3 Keys, 1 Lady Owner Plus Dealer Demonstrator, HPI Clear and Mileage Verified, Quality Checked In Our Own Workshops, Nationwide Delivery Available, Licensed Credit Brokers - We Can Finance You Car, Read Our Reviews - 26+ All Genuine and 5 Star Rated - Previous Customer Testimonials Available Upon Request, 3x3 point rear seat belts, Adjustable Steering Column/Wheel, Air Bag Driver, Air Bag Passenger, Air-Conditioning, Anti-Lock Brakes, Body Coloured Bumpers, CD Player, Central Door Locking, Electric Windows (Front), Electric door mirrors, Front Fog Lights, Head Restraints, Heated seats, Height adjustable drivers seat, Leather seats, Immobiliser, In Car Entertainment (Radio/Cassette/CD), Parking aid, Power steering, Lumbar support, Radio, Remote central locking, Speakers, Sunroof, Traction control, Power-Assisted Steering, Folding rear seats, Alloy wheels, Alarm, Sports seats. 4 seats, Solid Red, Orchard Motors, Unit 7 The Workshops, Pyehill Road, Jacksdale, Nottinghamshire, NG16 5LR Open 7 Days With Viewing By Appointment, Live i-Phone / i-Pad Facetime Viewing please call 01773 687659. Read Our 26 Plus Customer Reviews, Quality Hand Picked Vehicles All Prepared To a High Standard - Licensed Credit Brokers - 5* Reviews, GBP 4500 p/x welcome

    • Mileage: 40000 mi
    • Engine size: 1.794
    For sale
  • Toyota Celica

    £2,795 £2,795

    Air Conditioning, Full Leather, Central Locking, Remote Central Locking, Head Restraints, Height Adjustable Seat, Colour Coded Interior, Folding Rear Seats, Adjustable Steering Column, Power Steering, Traction Control, ABS, Air Bag, Multiple Airbags, Electric Mirrors, Electric Windows, Electric Sunroof, Sunroof, CD Player, Radio, Radio Cassette, Rear Wash/wipe, Rear Spoiler, Front Fog Lamps, Metallic Paintwork, Full service history Toyota Celica 1.8 VVTi, 39,000 Miles, Full Toyota Dealer History, 1 Previous Owner, Last Owner Since 2002, Electric Windows, Electric Sunroof, Electric Mirrors, Air Conditioning, Height Adjustable Headlights, Genuine Toyota Floor Mats, 4 Keys, MOT Expires 14th October 2016.

    • Mileage: 39000 mi
    • Engine size: 1794
    For sale

    £7,750 £7,750

    TRD M SPORT 0292;factory build number 0292 of just 1200 produced. This very rare and desired 7th Generation Celica comes.complete with all its original trd production upgrades still fitted, unmodified and in lovely rust free condition. ;TRD took the Celica from production line. then created the m sport by making the car lighter, stiffer, faster and with better handling.;TRD stiffened the chassis with additional spot welds to structural sections including roof supports shedding weight.where possible. some engine upgrades were carried out,then mounted to a uprated close ratio 6 speed gearbox, TRD short shift,Helical LSD and uprated organic clutch. ;TRD manifold and sports exhaust system. ;TRD Sportivo shock absorbers with uprated springs;TRD thicker front anti-roll bar;TRD uprated suspension bushes. ;TRD rear strut brace;TRD special instruments includes a 240 km/h speedometer with a contrasting white faced TRD;10,000rpm scaled rev counter finished within a carbon type instrument surround.;Wheels remain original in design, painted dark grey . ;the body-kit is Unique including a revised front lip, side skirts, rear valence and rear spoiler made of injection moulded Poly being more resilient to stone chips and damage ;TRD Sports leather steering wheel with a matching leather trimmed shift gaiter.;sports seats in part alcantara matching door inserts at the front, split folding rear seats also trimmed in alcantara;climate control, tinted UV glass,remote central locking, automatic power windows, full ABS, , lightweight space saver spare, high level central stop light, etc.;;part exchange is welcome. delivery can be arranged all major debit/credit card payments accepted

    • Mileage: 97800 mi
    • Engine size: 1.8
    For sale
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