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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hello,

I'm now on my 4th MKIV, and as much as I wish they weren't one of my favorite cars, they very much are. The bang for the buck is no longer there (w/ the impressive prices and antiquated tech), although my heart wants what it wants. Sell low; buy high - that's it, right?

I'm a huge Toyota/Lexus fan and started my obsession in high school w/ LandCruisers. I've owned over 20 Toyota/Lexus 4x4's, mostly LC's. I worked at a Cruiser specialty shop many years ago and remain an avid hobby mechanic.

I bought my first MKIV in the late 90's, I believe, (it was before F&F came out) - a black on tan '94 TT Auto w/ around 30K miles. I found it in Wichita, and a friend and I drove a modified '79 FJ40 through the night to trade it + $ for the Supra. It rained on the way back to Arkansas which made things interesting. I've desperately searched for the VIN w/ no luck (USAA only has records back to 2007 or so). I loved this car and would like to know where it is now. I took it to TX2K and had a blast.
As purchased, bone stock:
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As sold in the early 2000's, BPU:
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I sold it to a good friend who then hired me to put all sorts of goodies on it. We took it back to a TX2K event, and it laid down impressive numbers for an auto w/ twins. When he was ready to sell it to buy better Supra's (including one of SW's), he offered it to me for what he paid me for it w/ THOUSANDS in upgrades. I passed, and it still stings. I believe it went to Memphis and got involved in drag racing.

To be continued...
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
While I owned the black '94 TT auto, I bought this at a salvage yard for something like $850:
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It looked like this when I bought it:
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It was originally a red USDM TT 6-speed that was sent to Oman for a while. It came back to the US, and while being driven in an ice storm in Arkansas, made hard contact w/ a tree (impressively centered between the frame rails). I took a few parts off, mainly for friends w/ 6-speed TT's and eventually sold it for around $3K to someone in California who wanted the back half of it.

I'm curious what it would sell for today... More than $3K, I imagine. Wild.

To be continued...
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
After I sold both of those Supra's, I went w/out for a while. At some point (2008?), I found a '97 NA auto on CL in Louisiana. My dad and I drove down and picked it up. It had 16XK miles when I bought it, and amazingly, it still holds as one of my favorite cars that I've owned. It drove well, was peppy enough, was ultra-reliable, had enough miles/imperfections to not have many cares about driving it a lot. I loved that car. It turns out fully optioned NA autos are pretty nice.
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I sold it in 2012 w/ ~175K miles to a man in Nashville for not much less than I paid for it (a first!). This was one of his photos:
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It was later turbo'd and has changed hands a number of times. For example:
Supra Forums sale link
A shop in Missouri sold it at some point.

2012 to 2020 were Supra-less. Like I said above - sell low, buy high, right?

To be continued...
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I forgot to mention I had a different SF account around 2000. I don't recall the email address back then and have had this account active for a while. I spent A LOT of time on MKIV.com and following Mohd, SW, Andy, B.* and others back in the day. That seems like a lifetime ago. *I rode w/ Andy B. in his QS TT at one of the TX2K events, and I still smile thinking about how much fun it was.

For the past few years I have not been able to shake the desire for another Supra. I've watched the prices increase and grew more and more nervous about not being able to get back in. I also struggled w/ the desire for something newer and more advanced...and at this point, cheaper. Regardless, I find the Supra gorgeous and nearly perfect. Plus, I'm a Toyota diehard (and should be on their payroll w/ how many I've sold for them...).

I have seen several good examples for sale over the last few years and got serious about a few. I likewise got interested in the 996TT's (and still am - another car that seems to be appreciating). I've never owned a Porsche and am not sure I want to. Comparatively, though, they seem like a good compromise as Supra prices climb, plus AWD... I digress...

In 2019-2020 I had a lot of existential inner dialogue about buying another Supra, in particular, as it related to spending that kind of money. I work hard and am focused on retiring early. Any money spent on a Supra was not money invested. Plus, Supra prices are, ahem, steep. I cut my teeth on Supras when they were cheap by today's standards. I sold my '97 NA for around $12.5K. Blah, blah, blah. Ultimately, I decided we're only here once, and we can't take it w/ us. I work hard. I will enjoy the Supra immensely (and do!). It was a sacrifice, and thus far, has been 100% worth it!

My search criteria were rather simple - USDM MKIV TT, little/no rust, no major accidents, decent condition overall. I had some color preferences (RSP, QS, Alpine topped the list) although would have bought any color for the right price. I had no preference on transmission or top configuration. I specifically wanted a driver - the more miles, the better. I did not want a perfect, low mile car.

Last November I found and bought an alpine silver '97 TT 6-speed hardtop w/ 119K miles on FB Marketplace. It was originally a NA auto car (almost identical to the last one I had) and was converted at some point in the past and put down 800+ hp (I have a SP dyno chart from a few owners back). 2JZ Motorsports bought the car (perhaps from someone in Kansas - another tie to my Supra past) and tamed it down a bit to a BPU JDM TT, V160 car. They did an INCREDIBLE job, and I am continually impressed w/ their attention to detail and workmanship. They sold it to a man in St. Louis, and I bought it from him. I will research more history on the car as time allows.

Having a hardtop is a new experience (I quite like the targa), and the increased rigidity is impressive. The car is in great shape, inside and out, and needs very little. I have plans for it although have much research to do and have bookmarked dozens of threads here to dive more deeply into. I hope to add to and create some myself. I'm also in search of some parts for replacements and upgrades.

I was out of the country from around New Years to about a week ago, and therefore, have not driven the car much. I had two of the best days of my life (no hyperbole) in December when I spent five hours on two successive days (yes, 10 hours) driving on deserted 2-lane highways in the Ozark National Forest in north Arkansas. Leaves down, empty roads, cool, clear days, great views, and a wound up 2JZGTE. Whew...

I have LOTS of questions and much to learn about the car (not being the one to mod the car has left me in the dark). I've been out of the game for a while, and tech has advanced quite a bit. The JDM engine control is new to me, and I'd like to hold onto the OEM ECU for as long as possible. My eventual goal is ultra reliable ~500 WHP on twins. VVTi interests me greatly as well. That's all down the proverbial road though. I read just about anything Stu posts here and on FB.

Right now, it's time to baseline the car and drive it. New Michelins on the back only have the aforementioned 10 hours on them. That will change.

The morning after I drove it to Little Rock from St. Louis:
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Engine pic from the for sale ad (a work of ART!):
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Some pics from the December drives:
One day's route. The other day's route.
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I don't regret buying for one second.

I plan to reach out to the guys at 2JZ Motorsports in Utah to ask some questions and buy some parts. I also will be digging into the archives.

As for me, I currently split my time between Central Arkansas, Austin, Texas, and overseas. A near-term focus will be making the car a bit more pleasant for long-haul drives (improving ride quality, quieter exhaust, addressing a rattle, etc). I'm spoiled by my '04 LS430.

Thank you for reading my missive. I look forward to being part of the community again.

Erin

PS - if anyone has any tips on getting through the 30/30 requirement quickly, I'm all ears. There are few folks in the classifieds I'd like to reach out to.
 

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Awesome read man. What part of arkansas you from? I see you mentioned little rock. I'm right outside there from the Conway/Cabot area.
 

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Welcome back. Great story and well written. The car and the pics look familiar to me, but I can't put my finger on it just yet.

@FasTTurbo, administrator on here, can help you search out your old SN. If successful, your old posts will transfer over and you can avoid the 30/30 rule. That said, the rule was implemented as a tool to be used against the scammers who were attacking SF in droves, including entire subforums.

Looking forward to upcoming chapters of your story. I've always loved alpine silver cars. Never had one, but not for lack of trying.


Ken.
 

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I thought some of those pics looked like you were in MO. Nice steal from STL that’s a beautiful car. My old neck of the woods :)
 

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Welcome back. Looks very clean.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Awesome read man. What part of arkansas you from? I see you mentioned little rock. I'm right outside there from the Conway/Cabot area.
@affixrider I was born/raised in Little Rock and went to school in Fayetteville. I now spend time in LR and McRae (outside Beebe) when I'm in AR. I'd love to see you cars when I'm back in town (currently in Austin helping a friend move). There are a few Supras around central AR.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Welcome back. Great story and well written. The car and the pics look familiar to me, but I can't put my finger on it just yet.

@FasTTurbo, administrator on here, can help you search out your old SN. If successful, your old posts will transfer over and you can avoid the 30/30 rule. That said, the rule was implemented as a tool to be used against the scammers who were attacking SF in droves, including entire subforums.

Looking forward to upcoming chapters of your story. I've always loved alpine silver cars. Never had one, but not for lack of trying.


Ken.
@KenHenderson Thank you. It's great to be back in a Supra. I'll be posting more about the car and what history I know and perhaps that will spur some memories. I suspect the previous owner(s) were on SF.

I completely understand the 30/30 rule, and as awkward as it is for those of us who are legit and good folks, it makes sense. The scammers and crooks are quite frustrating and are fortunate to have the anonymity of the internet to hide behind. I feel sorry for them. The upside of the 30/30 is that is spurs participation. I'm a well-practiced lurker although want to contribute as time allows.

No need to revive my old account as I'm sure I was mostly a lurker then as well. This one has been opened for around 13 years anyway. Wild.

I'm partial to silver. I have a silver LS430 and silver LX470. QS is one of my favorite colors of all time although that's likely related to the rarity of the 98's and good memories of the early TX2K events. Plus, silver is forgiving w/ dirt and imperfections. If I recall from SF research, I seem to recall you were shooting for one of every color :).
 

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Yeah man. I know alot of the Central AR guys. As of right now im back in Colorado. I come to arkansas several times a year for family and to burn vacation up and most of the time ill bring one of the supras along with me. Next time I'm headed that way ill let you know.
 

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Welcome! Always good to see a fellow driver out there using their Supra for what they're best at, road tripping. Car looks nice!

As I get older, the "practicality / comfort" discussion comes to mind, but you know... I find that life's too short to drive boring cars. Hence, I daily a Miata these days. Not that the Supra isn't fun, it's just... well, it's a Supra. Cantankerous would probably best describe my car in its current state. :p

Nice choice on the Lexus front though... we have a 2000 IJM LS400 that might truly be the best all-around car I've ever had the pleasure of driving. Perfect road tripper, daily (mileage is... well, not terrible), parts runner, truck when you don't have a truck, and who knew, sport sedan! Seriously, Toyota knew what they were doing with the LS, and so much of it is hidden nicely behind the visage of "old man car" looks haha. I love it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
@te72, yes, the LS is INCREDIBLE. Mine is an '04 LS430, and it's my daily "beater." I refer to it as the "grandpa car," and I absolutely love it. It was owned by an elderly couple in Texas who had some minor fender benders, etc, so the body is in such a condition that I don't worry about it. It looks good from 20' or so. The interior and mechanical condition are nearly flawless.

Honestly, I've done myself a disservice in owning/driving that car. I'm spoiled by the comfort, silence, smoothness, effortlessness, etc, that all other cars are inferior in some way. Gasp. I toy w/ the idea of buying another as a "spare." It's even more ridiculous when I type it - I just like the car that much.

I'm a big fan of the LS400's and look at them when they come up for sale locally. That car was revolutionary. I am pondering putting the 1UZ in my old Toyota 4x4.

The first and second gens are wonderful!

Erin
 

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My old man used to sell Lexus and he brought the LS400 home when it was brand new. It literally felt like a space ship (Japan Cadillac)
 

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@te72, yes, the LS is INCREDIBLE. Mine is an '04 LS430, and it's my daily "beater." I refer to it as the "grandpa car," and I absolutely love it. It was owned by an elderly couple in Texas who had some minor fender benders, etc, so the body is in such a condition that I don't worry about it. It looks good from 20' or so. The interior and mechanical condition are nearly flawless.

Honestly, I've done myself a disservice in owning/driving that car. I'm spoiled by the comfort, silence, smoothness, effortlessness, etc, that all other cars are inferior in some way. Gasp. I toy w/ the idea of buying another as a "spare." It's even more ridiculous when I type it - I just like the car that much.

I'm a big fan of the LS400's and look at them when they come up for sale locally. That car was revolutionary. I am pondering putting the 1UZ in my old Toyota 4x4.

The first and second gens are wonderful!

Erin
I've been eyeing LS460's for a while now. Can't really get past the weight factor, but man... if I ever need a daily to replace the Miata, it would be a consideration for sure. Love the idea of the extra power and gears...

I totally hear you about the car making others seem less than they are. It's not the other car's fault that the LS is just that good. Never thought I would like the LS, I actually bought the first one we had, a 1993 LS400, to use as a drivetrain / suspension donor for a 48 Chevy I had. I knew the LS had great suspension, and that the engine would take to boost well. The Chevy project never came to fruition, and that LS went onto a couple new owners locally. I still see it once in a while. It hit a deer... and won. Normal cars don't do that around here, the deer weigh 200+ lbs.

Now my wife is buying a 2017 IS300, and @Wreckless tells me to get ready for everything else to seem like a turd haha. Seems Lexus kept progressing. :)
 
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