This pristine example of a 1979 Toyota Cressida (yes, that’s C-R-E-S-S-I-D-A) was the 1970’s Lexus. It may look very similar to a 1970’s Plymouth, but looks are deceiving. It had a 110 horsepower, fuel injected, 2.6 liter in-line six cylinder with a four-speed overdrive transmission. If it was front-wheel-drive, nobody really cared (at least, that much…), but it turns out that it is actually rear-wheel drive. In its first year of production, Toyota raked in the green backs, selling 18,649 Cressida’s for only $8,731. Throughout it’s eight years of production, over 350,000 were sold. It was available as a sedan or station wagon until 1986 (when production ceased).
Nowadays, the Cressida is a cheaper alternative than a late 1970’s to early 1980’s Cadillac, Lincoln, or Chrysler. As Car & Driver said in 1983, “The Cressida is a cheaper, better-looking alternative to the normal Cadillac, Lincoln, or Chrysler. It handles with a prowess of a Mercedes-Benz turbodiesel sedan, but is much quieter and easier to live with. Overall, it is an amazing road tripper for going down the interstates. From a distance, it can be mistaken for a Cadillac Seville.”
Out of the 350,000 Cressida’s on the road, approximately 200,000 were sold to South American customers. The interesting thing is, about 180,000 Cressida’s are being used as taxis. They have an interior bigger than the Crown Vic (another popular choice in South America. . . ), which makes them versatile, easy to get into, and comfortable.
It had similar looks to the late 1980’s Toyota Camry and early 1990’s Honda Accord. They are a bit on the expensive side for a 1970’s-80’s Japanese car, but are nice cars to take the friends on a long ride down the Interstate. I’m thinking of getting one just because of what I’m saying. . . maybe Mom and Dad will sell the minivan and get this. . .