A look back at the Toyota Sports 800 (1965 – 1970) 0


When you consider that the Sports 800 was Toyota’s first proper stab at a sportscar, it was a valiant attempt; an impressive debut in a market crowded by formidable competition at the time.

The Japanese company’s influences are clear to see, close attention was clearly paid to the Austin Healey Sprite and MG Midget during the design process. Based on the Publica mini-car, the 800 was sold in the tax-friendly Kei-class domestically.

The 800’s two-cylinder engine was quite powerful relatively speaking; a lively, near-100 mph performance easily turned out. Compared to its more well-known (in the UK) rival, the Honda S800, the Toyota Sports 800 had a pretty standard technical make-up, featuring a solid rear axle and drum brakes on all wheels. The lithe, lightweight bodywork ensured it zipped along however.  

Very few made it to UK shores, those imported change hands for exorbitant amounts.

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