2001 Toyota MR2 Spyder
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2001Toyota MR2 Spyder
“… finely balanced handling… superb five-speed gearbox… jewel-like twin-cam, sixteen-valve, four-cylinder engine.” -Car&Driver
Toyota's launch of the MR2 back in February of 1985 garnered rave reviews from virtually every quarter of the automotive press, but especially from the sports-car-minded journalists. At its first opportunity, Car & Driver named the MR2 to its elite “Ten Best” list, and singled out its gearbox and ergonomic interior layout as best in the industry. Twelve years later, when the MR2 Spyder appeared, the accolades only grew with Motor Trend noting the new car delivered “the best of everything the original MR2 had to offer and more.” And Car&Driver waxed eloquent about its handling prowess: “The new MR2 Spyder is so confidence-inspiring that it might almost be the reason Toyota chose the mid-engine format. You know, to prove once and for all that it can be done with none of the quirks found in other examples of the type.”
The MR2 Spyder brings together design features and engineering sure to please enthusiast drivers, and does so in a package with Toyota's legendary build-quality and reliability. The combination of a roadster body, a lively aluminum 1.8-liter engine featuring VVT-1 (variable valve-timing) producing 138 horsepower, a rigid steel unibody (all weighing in at just 2,230 pounds overall), and a very trim 95-inch wheelbase yielded a spirited driving experience with handling that was remarkably responsive yet predictable. With Toyota importing just 5,000 Spyders a year, it's no wonder demand exceeded supply for what one headline writer dubbed the “Toyota Boxster.”
The “Absolutely Red” 2001 MR2 Spyder offered here is a very well cared-for example. As the more than 100 photographs on our website, Garage Kept Motors, clearly show, the condition of the exterior paint, two-tone bucket seats, interior trim and switchgear (notice the perfect condition of the stitching and the light patina on the leather gearshift knob), engine bay, and undercarriage is uniformly excellent. (Be sure and inspect the close-up photographs especially.) The accompanying short video captures the delightful music of the rev-happy engine. The black convertible top is like-new. Testimony to enthusiast ownership, the car's already superb handling has been further upgraded with TRD strut braces front and rear.
With fewer than 2,500 miles-per-year on the odometer since new, it's pretty clear that prior owners treated this MR2 Spyder with respect. The car's original window sticker—also included here—is one more indication that those owners knew they were enjoying a special vehicle.
Whether savoring the simple joys of open-top driving, or indulging a competitive impulse at weekend auto-crossing events, the next owner of this MR2 Spyder is sure to have a very satisfied smile on their face.