Filed under: Classics , Etc. , Toyota , Celebrities “You’ve never heard of the 1977 Star Wars Celica? Kids, it’s the car that was the grand prize in the Star Wars Space Fantasy Sweepstakes.” It most likely started life as a 1977 Celica LiftBack GT Pace Car , an extra-flared, spoilered-up version of the coupe that already looked like a three-quarter scale muscle car. Delphi Auto Design of Costa Mesa, California lavished the bodywork with a custom paint job featuring galactic nebula, TIE fighters , X-Wings , and a lovingly airbrused recreation of the Tom Jung poster art on the hood. Pete Vilmur has been looking for this car for a long time, and he’s probably the foremost expert on it, but still, nothing has emerged from the ether. The trail goes colder than Hoth after 1977, when the contest, a joint effort between Toyota and Twentieth Century Fox, picked its award winners. No record of the car’s VIN can be found, nor can the name of a winner. That may be due in part to Delphi Auto Design being caught in a legal imbroglio involving drug running, murder and income tax violation that tied up one of the main financiers of the business. There was a glimmer of hope in the form of an early-1980s classified ad listing the car for sale, but no record of that can be turned up, either. So where is it?
Filed under: Motorsports , Toyota , Racing Jonny Milner’s Goodwood Toyota Celica – Click above for high-res image gallery The Goodwood Festival of Speed is filled with a variety of machines all battling towards a singular goal. Every driver wants to be the cross the finish line in the least amount of time, and this year the winning car was a bit of a surprise. A bright orange Toyota Celica, piloted by rally champion Jonny Milner, blazed up the 1.16-mile Goodwood hillclimb course in 48.07 seconds. That time bested all of the supercars, and even the Formula 1 racers that participated. How does a Toyota Celica make the run that quickly? By pumping out over 800 horsepower to all four wheels in a car that only weighs 2,318 pounds. The Celica’s stock engine was replaced with a 2.0-liter four-cylinder unit plucked from a WRC Toyota Corolla. That mill was then paired with both a Rotrex supercharger and Garrett turbocharger, and Iif that wasn’t enough, a nitrous oxide system was thrown in for good measure. Video of the winning run hasn’t made its way to the Internet just yet, but we do have footage of the car throwing down a 48.99-second run. Click past the jump to watch the clip, and then fast forward to 1:48 for Jonny Milner’s run.