1984 Toyota Celica GT Rally Car

There is a car show held once a month in Scottsdale where people gather to drink coffee and show off their high-end exotic cars. I skipped right past the rows of Ferraris and Porsches to go check out this 1984 Toyota Celica GT (yes, seriously).

I took one look at the car and could tell right away that something special was going on here. For one thing, it’s a lifted car! Aside from an AMC Eagle or a Subaru rally car, you don’t often see cars with this much ground clearance! I snapped some photos and looked around for the owner who was nowhere to be found.

After the car show, I went online and discovered that the car belongs to Jon Rood, a local gearhead with a real talent for fabrication. In a build thread at specialstage.com, the owner shows how he installed a roll cage, seriously modified the front and rear suspension, made his own front control arms from scratch, and more. The car also has custom front and rear bumpers as well as Recaro racing seats and a fuel cell in the back.

I don’t have a lot of details about the car, but I do remember reading a post where the owner mentioned that it has about 8″ of suspension travel in the front, and about 9″ in the rear. It is powered by a freshened-up 2.4L Inline-4 22REC motor which makes 105hp and 137 lb-ft of torque.

There are YouTube videos of him driving the car and doing jumps on a dirt road. I even found some photos of the car slinging more mud than a mayoral election!

This is one seriously cool car, and I am even more impressed that it was built in a home garage by one guy! There is a lot of work in this 80s hatchback, but I think you’ll agree the end result is pretty awe-inspiring.