Author, Nigel Burton, Hardbound, 192 Pages, ISBN: 9781847979315, Published, 2015
The Toyota MR2 was a milestone in Japanese automotive history. It was Japan's first midengined mass-production sports car built on a bespoke chassis and fitted with one of the world's most sophisticated small-capacity 4-cylinder engines. At a stroke it redefined the concept of the small, affordable two-seater and made everything that had gone before instantly obsolete. From the moment it was revealed at the Tokyo Motor Show in 1984, enthusiasts around the world were desperate to get their hands on one.
And yet it was almost so very different.The MR2 did not start life as a mid-engined two-seater It wasn't even a sports car. It was initially intended to be a fuel-efficient design project, in response to the 1973 oil crisis and subsequent impact on sales to international markets, particularly America.Yet thanks to the efforts and vision of a small group of engineers, designers and enthusiasts the project became a sporting legend.
Toyota MR2 —The Complete Story tells of the trials and tribulations the team faced bringing the MR2 to market, how global events almost conspired to force Toyota to cancel the project and how it survived against all odds to become one of the company's best-loved cars.
The book examines all three generations of MR2. It considers the press backlash against the second-generation MR2 and how Toyota responded to criticism of the car's handling in record time. And it
reveals how the third-generation MR2 Roadster was literally sketched on the back of a piece of paper by a maverick designer determined to keep the name alive, despite fears that a mid-engined sports car had no place in Toyota's plans for the twenty-first century.
It details Toyota's speculative attempts at building soft-top versions of the first two models, as well as the many limited editions and race-derived specials. With chapters on the MR2's competition history, includingToyota's aborted MR2 world rally project, stunning one-off modified cars, the tuning potential of all three generations and the world of replica body kits, Toyota MR2 is the definitive dossier of a true Japanese classic.
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