Wagon Virus: 1978 Toyota Corona Station Wagon – DNS on BaT!

Jun 2021 | Classifinds, Wagon Wednesday

June 3, 2021 Update – Contrary to what the automotive press will have you believe, about twenty percent of Bring a Trailer’s auction lots do not sell on the site during their auction.  One recent casualty was this 1978 Toyota Corona we first featured on GuyswithRides in December 2020 when the seller, who turned to be a dealer posing as a private seller, had the car listed on Craigslist.  The $6,000 high bid fell short of the reserve we believe was likely between $7,000 and $8,000. Unlike GuysWithRides “Cars Still Available” page, Bring a Trailer does not offer a mechanism for selling rides that don’t meet their reserve after the auction, so this dealer will have to start from scratch to list it elsewhere.

Long before the noun “Corona” became synonymous with pandemics and beer, it was one of Toyota’s best-selling car lines.  While most Coronas succumbed to the corrosion virus long ago, this 1978 Wagon survivor currently listed in Hillsdale, New York (Albany)on Craigslist originally from California with only 14K original miles has an asking price of $8,200.  Comparing this price against the Hagerty Insurance Online Valuation Tool confirms this private seller has his Corona priced $600 less than the #1 “Excellent” appraisal of $8,800.  produced from 1957 through 2001 across eleven distinct generations, Toyota launched its fifth iteration of the Corona brand for 1973 and produced it through 1979 for the North American market.  The station wagon featured optional wood panel body cladding, while the sole engine choice for the U.S. market was the 20R 2.2-liter inline-four.

By 1978, North American models had longer 5mph-compliant bumpers and standard radial tires. While U.S. Corona sales continued to grow in the early 1970s to grow as a result of the 1973 oil crisis, by the middle of the decade it faced increasing competition from the Honda Accord and the Subaru DL. Both offered more interior space due to their more efficient front-wheel-drive layout.  By the early eighties, Toyota replaced the Corona with the true mid-size Camry that remains in production today.

Here’s our second “You Asked For it, You Got It” 1970s vintage Toyota commercial found on the Osborn Tramain YouTube Channel:

A rust-free Toyota equipped with the virtually indestructible 20R four-cylinder, air conditioning, and a five-speed stick all wrapped in a nicely-sized rear-wheel-drive platform.  This may be finest ’78 Corona in existence this side of a Toyota museum. All these have the makings of a fine AACA preservation class contender that will also make you the center of attention at most local Cars & Coffee events.  Good luck with the purchase!

Here’s the seller’s description:

“I have a RUST FREE 1978 Toyota Corona Wagon from the West Coast. This could be your next JDM parts chaser or custom. It has the world-famous 20R 4cyl. engine with a 5 spd. manual trans.PS.PDB.AC.Try to find another one this clean on the East Coast. It runs and drives great.$8,200.”

Do you have a Toyota Corona story you’d like to share?  Comment below and let us know!

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