The Toyota Sports 800 Is The Forefather of Fun

The Toyota Sports 800 Is The Forefather of Fun

– I used to wash cars and I worked
at gas stations, so when I could afford it, when I was 15, it was a 1959 Fiat 600
suicide doors and for $110, it just made me happy. It might have well have been a
Porsche, and it started from there and why I didn’t get off of that, I don’t know. My name is Scott Sylvester and
I’m driving a 1967 Toyota Sports 800. Not many people much at all about these
because they were only made for the Japanese market. And so in this case, the
total production was 3,131 over the four years they made them and only about 300 or
less were in the left hand drive. Coming out of the war, Japan was actually
making most of their cars under license to other manufacturers. They didn’t have
their own ideas and it was when the Japanese ministries decided we really
should build for our own needs because they had so a bad gas crisis, and their
roads were all small. These were the first of the fun sports
cars for the Japanese public. They chose the engine itself was already
had been produced for the public and believe it or not, it was also used in
certain buses in Tokyo. By choosing the Publica they then went to work by
stripping it down and putting different bodies on it and it was designed
at Datsun in the wind tunnel primarily because if they could cheat to
win, even with lower horse power over Honda, they actually could pull the Honda
at the higher speeds for long periods of time. Being mostly aluminum except for the
cyclinders, the upstep, the displacement to 800CCs, they doubled the carburetors,
it has two Aisan carburetors a fairly long [inaudibe 0:02:19]
and then they have Hotter cams, higher compression
and and offered four different gear ratios as well, depending upon what the
person was going to use it for. Take a look at the direct front nose.
Obviously, it has a small scoop area. It had a classic, design statement of
Toyota, with the lighting in board. That allowed them first of all,
to cover the headlights with plexi glass,
one of the only Japanese cars at the time to have done that but
take a look at the fenders. It’s rare to see the actual metal being shaped left and
right of the headlight. So the whole front is meant to capture as least amount of
air as possible. It had to be done all aerodynamic
and it had to be lighter by a couple hundred pounds
than anything else. So if you look at the hood, it’s
hand-turned aluminum. It has air outlets like you would see on hot rods. It has
actually aircraft aluminum seats. They look, with the rivets,
just like you would see on a period 1960s or 50s airplane.
This car weighs 1268 pounds. It takes a lot of engineering in
the 60s to hit something like that. It has a very lighthearted character. They
have a unique suspension on it, which probably gives a lot of it. Obviously, you can see that it has a low
center of gravity and because of that, it really doesn’t have a lot of swing or
sway. They have sufficient anti-sway bar up front, which is rather large actually,
for a Japanese car of it’s stock. It’s got much more room in it than one
would ever imagine, probably because of that tiny little engine sitting far
forward. It allowed them to put in the foot row and your feet
are basically straight out. In Japan, the Yodahachi
which is a kind of a slang for Toyota Eight
is an icon car for them. It is very difficult to find parts. However, through
Japan Options, I worked for all those years constantly looking for people who
had parts for these and I would one by one buy them. At the same time I was
dis-assembling it and waiting for the chance to put it back together
with the parts. So this might be one of the very, very few
restored in its condition. At the shows, the Japanese would
come up and just thank me for having a Yodahachi. You can’t get used to the feeling. The Toyota garners a really
different response The first thing is, it’s always,
“What is it?” But the second thing is, you hear them screaming, “It’s a Toyota?” It
says a lot for Toyota’s brand, that it means a lot to people when they see it’s a
Toyota but it really shakes their brain up a bit in confusion. Invariably, the questions come, “What are you going to do with these? Why do you
have them in the first place? What are you going to do with all of them?” But right
now, I’m just going to enjoy the heck out of them and I guess, I’m spoiled. I
spoiled myself by sticking with a few fun cars for a lot less money or about the
same for one big super car.

100 Replies to “The Toyota Sports 800 Is The Forefather of Fun”

  1. As an owner of a completely standard MR2 SW20 ,  I must say this is a fantastic Little Toyota you have!

    It reminds me of British Sports cars of the time ,     There is definitely a pinch of Healey Sprite in there!   Would love to see one!

  2. Old school toyotas are very underated, because when you think "classic" usually an american muscle car comes to mind.
    But classic japanese cars are just as nice!
    From this beutiful s800, to a datsun 510!
    I personally own a old school toyota myself, a 1985 celica gts, people ask me about it all the time.

  3. Does anybody know what watch he has on? Right in the first frame it's clear but I cannot see the logo or brand 🙁

  4. This is such a ridiculously cool car… and I can't believe how quiet and smooth it is for an 800cc vertical twin.

  5. It's a shame there aren't many of these. I think it'd be great with a 4age in it. Where are the kit car companies nowadays?

  6. the thing that you can say about old cars is that old cars have souls not today's cars that the reason they were made so that they're makers earn lots of money

  7. This is always truly been one of my favorite cars the shame that there aren't more of them in America. I'd love to have the privilege of owning one.

  8. purists may hate me but, CAN YOU IMAGINE A SR20DET IN THAT THING e.e i mean even a 3s beams that would be fun as heell

  9. That final part,driving that idealic road with the mountains on the background and the sun going down just gives you the urge to get out there in the world on my motorcycle

  10. Elegant, small, beautiful! It doesn't matter what's the pricetag on them, all the cars they have on Petrolicious are really cars I could fall in love with, easily. And I'm always happy to see people preserve them so well, instead of adding a lot of stuff to the cars that in truth just takes away from their iconic style and beauty. I think the electronics in a modern car weigh more than this whole piece of art as a whole.

  11. ボンネット閉め方、屋根のはずし方、ハンドルの持ち方どれをとってもこのオーナーの方の車に対する愛情を感じる。英語がわからないのが悲しい。

  12. I have a Nissan Figaro and also a Toyota Sera. The Toyota Sera's came with Automatic Transmissions except for 150 that had a 5 speed manual. Total production was around 15,000 ! They built 20,000 Nissan Figaro's.

  13. That's a great piece of Toyota History you have there! Drive it well, and find a home for it that'll display it for the years to come.

  14. my dad own one of these. we are in the middle of restoring it. it is very difficult to find parts. the rubbers are worn out especially.

  15. Awesome car! I lose an average of 20 minutes of sleep every night because this channel always grabs me. This is a perfect example of such a cool under the radar kind of car story and exactly another 6:18 of less sleep for me. Oh well, this one was certainly worth it

  16. it has a very Italian feel, in some areas, esp. that rear…beautiful, just hate the (add on?) bumpers, i totally understand why you'd want them, however.

  17. I don't know man. This car just doesn't appeal to me. I like the back of it, as it reminds me of a the legendary jaguar 1960 e type. But the front of the car looks rather tasteless and disappointing.

  18. This is an insanely great idea! I bigger version of this sports car may have done well in the USA (keeping the same profile). Toyota, where is your playfulness?

  19. I had not watched this in a long time. Paying more attention to detail, I saw an Isetta in one corner. This man is clearly of the quirky disposition. Bless him for it!

  20. My dream cars: Toyota sports 800, Toyota 2000GT, Nissan Fairlady 240z, Alfa Romeo Spider 1967, Honda s800, Hakosuka GTR, Datsun 510 2door, Honda NSX and many many more which is hard to get. 🙁 I only have my hyundai, but I still love it. 🙂


  22. does anyone know if there's a company that makes replicas of these? i have a certain idea involving a yamaha sportbike engine…

  23. Hi,

    I am stariting to restore one LHd, and I will need help with parts, can you ask Acoot if you can pass me some links or advises? best regards

  24. Toyota makes its money from super reliable family saloons and SUV’s and middle class people movers. But truly, if they wish, they can make world beater standard bearer cars of any kind they choose. Their efficiency is legendary and they are obsessed with quality and predictability. Two things the general world is very keen on indeed, across the spectrum….
    Think on it, this car oozes Italian style – for the uninitiated, it could just as easily been designed by Zagato, Pininfarina, Bertone, Vignale or any one else of that level…
    Remember James Bonds You Only Live Twice and that gorgeous Toyota 2000 GT…..

  25. If Fiat would have imported something this cute the second time around to the US instead of the egg shapes they used they might not have been a flop. Along with better reliability.

  26. So cute, and so nicely restored! I had a 67' LHD until 2000' or so. Was a bit of a tight fit for my 6'2" frame. I had a ton of NOS parts in the original boxes. Shouldn't have sold it! Something I didn't realize until recently, it was almost a complete knockoff of a European design.

  27. Racing division of Toyota called "Gazoo" recently restomodded original racing version – Chassis number "UP15-10007" that ran 1966 first Suzuka 500km race that was discovered. Awesome story.

  28. Can't wait when this car comes to gran turismo sport June update 2019 Toyota sport 800 with detail interior 👍😍

  29. As a lifelong Toyota fan I would love them to make something like this again; 2 seater fun car, maybe with the fab Aygo 3 pot engine, stripped down to basics and ideal for weekend and day trips. Doesn't need to be fast but look fantastic. I always say "It's not about the speed, it's about the style!"

  30. Saw one of these today in Murfreesboro TN at an Old Chicago, had no idea what i was looking at but loved it.

  31. “Offered 4 different gear ratios, depending on what the person was gonna use it for” damn they really were ahead of their time wtf

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