Final Feature 1: 1997 Toyota Paseo Convertible – Sold?

by | May 2021 | Classifinds, Topless Thursday

July 8, 2021 Update – We just confirmed the listing for this Paseo “Classifind” expired, so with no replacement found we’re assuming this ride “Sold?” While this one got away, please reach out either by email or call us directly if you’d like to be informed when we come across something similar.

If you were in the market for a brand new convertible in 1997, you had many different cars to choose from. By the late nineties, even conservative Toyota offered two convertibles: the well-known Camry variant and the much rare Paseo such as the example originally listed in May 2021 on Craigslist in New Haven, Connecticut offered at $8,500 currently. Unfortunately, so rare is this car that none of our typical pricing sources provide guidance on these cars. Only J.D. Power’s NADA Guides Online Valuation Tool confirms the private seller has their Paseo priced well above this guide’s “High” retail estimate of only $3,675. You’ll have to decide whether it’s worth the premium.

The Toyota Paseo (known as the Cynos in Japan) was a sporty-style subcompact the company offered across two generations from 1991 through 1997 in the U.S. Based on the entry-level Tercel, Paseos could be had as either a two-door coupé or a convertible. While Toyota stopped selling the car in the US after 1997, it continued to be sold in Canada, Europe, and Japan until 1999. The name “Paseo” is Spanish for “a walk” or “a stroll.”

Just like the Camry, Toyota turned to OEM supplier American Sunroof Company (better known as “ASC”) to convert Paseo coupes into convertibles. Unfortunately, the cost of the conversion took the otherwise entry-level car too far upmarket and as a result, Toyota never sold very many Paseo Convertibles.

Based upon the current caretaker’s description, this is a very well-preserved example that will gain you entry into any RAD Era-themed event you choose to drive to. We hope the seller can find another caretaker who is just as passionate about preserving this Paseo as he is.

Here’s the seller’s description:

“Automatic, A/C, Cruise, PS, PB, PW, PL, AM-FM
Factory original, above-average maintenance, no cheap parts ever. All receipts. Newer paint. I use AMSOIL motor oil, transmission fluid, and other AMSOIL products. Transmission Fluid changed at every other oil change. Sale includes original wheels not installed, Toyota JBL Audio not installed, Owner’s Manual, and more.
Tires in excellent condition. Always Garaged. Runs and drives perfectly. No problems.
The interior is showing wear, and the paint has normal chips and scratches.

It will have some work coming up. Nothing awful, I will explain and answer any questions for people that come to look at it. I’m not an arm twister or persuasive.
But please, if you don’t have the money to buy it–Don’t respond to this ad.

I trust this car more than my 2016 daily driver because, It’s a Toyota, I have a flawless history with it being reliable, and because I over-maintain it.

This car is special. Car-people/Car-guys understand it’s significance.
It’s insured with Hagerty, and accepted by them because it falls into their “special” category due to it’s rarity and condition. The insurance costs me about $250 annually since I own a 2016 car that’s insured with a non vintage/non specialty insurance company.
That rate should be the same for the next owner if they have similar circumstances.

I’m selling this car because my elderly Father is giving me his convertible. That’s meaningful to me because my Dad is doing poorly and I’ll love having that after he passes. Otherwise, I wouldn’t consider selling my Toyota.

I want to add that interested persons really should have a garage or storage facility for this car. The reason is more than because it’s a nice car and enjoyable to own. It’s an investment with the potential to payback. When it reaches twenty-five years old it will begin to climb in value annually. It would be a shame to have it deteriorate being kept outdoors. The next owner has the opportunity to enjoy this car for years, and if well-kept they could make their money back, or more.

I care about this car in part because over time too many cars are thoughtlessly crushed, as a result often there are no longer examples for museums. Therefore, after the sale I will be glad to help the new owner with questions that arise, advice, and with some assistance in keeping this car well serviced.
My only expectation in doing so is that I be treated like the gentleman that I am.

No Text. Call or Email.

Show or go: what would you do with this nicely preserved Paseo?  Comment below and let us know!


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