In Or Out?

This is the third installment of In Or Out? Not to be crabby, but if this post doesn’t receive at least five votes, then this feature will be discontinued.



This is a photo of a 1986 Toyota MR2 (the year means it’s a first-generation MR2 or W10) that I took at the Mecum auction in Glendale, Arizona in March of 2020. It’s hard to believe it’s already been two months since we attended. As one can see from the sticker in the middle of the windshield this car was sold at no reserve and hammered for–are you ready for this?–$3,575 all in. The fans of these cars much prefer manual transmissions and this car had an automatic.

If my (i)ncomparable niece casts a vote the vote will be “IN!” She had one of these, absolutely loved it, and credits her experience with her MR2 as igniting her interest in cars. She will often ask me, jokingly (OK, maybe only half-joking), if one of these would fit in the living room of her New York City apartment.

The Mecum car was equipped with a 1.6 liter (98 cubic inches for Bill Stephens although he would probably reject a car with an engine of that displacement) inline, transversely mounted mid-ship 4-cylinder engine that produced 112 HP in naturally aspirated form. Starting in 1986, although not until 1988 in the US, the MR2 was available with a supercharged version of the motor that produced 145 HP/137 LB-FT of torque.

The MR2 was sold for more than 20 years in three very distinct generations. It was the first Japanese mid-engine production car. According to this website, more MR2s were sold in the US and Canada than in Japan. About 163,000 MR2s were sold in total from 1984 to 1989, which is the span of W10 production.

OK, folks…1st generation Toyota MR2, In Or Out?






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10 thoughts on “In Or Out?

  1. In. Mid-engine cars have a better weight balance than a rear-engine car. I’m not a real fan of the angular styling of that era, however, this one has nice lines.


    1. Thanks, Philip. The voting for the first-gen MR2 is now 3-0, In.

      Yes, mid-engine cars have better balance than front-engine cars, ceterus paribus. Obviously, that fact of physics is one reason the C8 Corvette is mid-engined.


    1. Thanks, sir. That’s now 4-0, IN for the 1st-Gen MR2. Frankly, I’m surprised. Still need at least one more vote, though. Anyone? Hey, (i)ncomparable niece, are you out there?


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