Arizona

18-19 January 2018

Offered from a Private Collection

1967 Toyota 2000GT

  • Chassis no. MF10-10111

Without Reserve


  • Offered from a private collection
  • One of 62 U.S.-delivery examples
  • One of six 2000GTs originally finished in Bellatrix Yellow
  • “The Japanese E-Type;” arguably the most significant modern Japanese car


The 2000GT’s story starts not with Toyota but with Yamaha, who decided to design a sports car after years of producing motorcycles. Yamaha first marketed its design to Nissan, who ended up not taking on the project, so the car was then marketed to Toyota, who saw this tiny little sports car as an opportunity to shed its reputation of producing rather conservatively designed automobiles. Some inside the company might have considered this move to be a gamble for a company who had never sold such an automobile, but it was clear that the 2000GT could give Toyota and Yamaha’s designers and engineers a chance to compete on the world stage.

The Toyota 2000GT is perhaps most aptly described as “the best sports car you’ve never heard of.” Developed in conjunction with Yamaha, this slinky two-passenger coupe packed a two-liter inline six-cylinder engine with a cast iron block and double overhead cams, good for 150 hp at 7,000 rpm and a top speed of over 135 mph. James Crowe, writing of the car in Road & Track, described it as “highly refined in handling and driving and one of the most exciting cars we have driven.” The luxurious interior fittings, including a rosewood veneer dashboard and a signal-seeking radio, were described as “up to par for a luxurious GT—an impressive car in which to sit or ride, or simply admire.”

The 2000GT was the Japanese E-Type, a car that could run against the best that Europe had to offer and, frankly, win, and it has been credited with establishing the Toyota name as a force to be reckoned with in the automotive world.

Unfortunately, the 2000GT has never achieved the same fame outside of Japan as its European brethren, in large part because only 351 were built and very few were exported outside of its home country. As its wonders have begun to achieve recognition in recent years, surviving examples have become highly sought after, and today, the 2000GT is universally described as the most collectible, desirable, and valuable Japanese automobile ever produced.

The example offered here is one of 62 original left-hand-drive versions produced, and one of six 2000GTs originally finished in what is arguably the most desirable factory color, Bellatrix Yellow, as documented in Shin Yoshikawa’s well-known book on the model. First shipped to the U.S., it was sold in 1983 by Bill Young to well-known Toyota dealer and 2000GT collector, Craig Zinn, who had it restored and enjoyed it as his everyday driver for several years.

In 2003 Mr. Zinn commissioned a fresh, show-quality restoration of the 2000GT by Steve Classen, in which it was returned to the original color scheme, had the engine and suspension overhauled, and was fitted with an upgraded electric brake booster and a completely custom-fabricated cooling system. The car was then sold to the current owner in 2008, and has now remained in his esteemed private collection for a decade.

Please contact our exclusive automotive transportation partner, Reliable Carriers, for a shipping quote or any other information on the transport of this vehicle.

Alexander Weaver

aweaver@rmsothebys.com

+1 864 313 6844
California, United States

Alexander Weaver joined RM Sotheby’s in 2011 as a Car Specialist after graduating from Furman University in South Carolina. Born... read more

Augustin Sabatié-Garat

asabatie-garat@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 74 1511 4179
United Kingdom

Augustin Sabatié-Garat joined RM Europe in 2012 as a Car Specialist after more than a decade in the collector car hobby. Gradua... read more

Barney Ruprecht

bruprecht@rmsothebys.com

+1 203 912 7168
Ontario, Canada

Barney’s interest in classic cars began at an early age after being introduced to his father’s all-original 1965 Porsche 911. Barney l... read more

David Swig

dswig@rmsothebys.com

+1 415 302 2247
California, United States

David Swig joined RM Sotheby’s West Coast division as a Car Specialist in May 2015. David is a life-long automobile enthusi... read more

Don Rose

drose@rmsothebys.com

+1 617 513 0388
United States

Don joined RM in 2006 after several years of professionally trading sports and classic cars, and after earning a reputation as a noted... read more

Donnie Gould

dgould@rmsothebys.com

+1 954 566 2209
Florida, United States

Donnie Gould joined the RM team in 2002 as a partner and Car Specialist after more than two decades in the vintage automobile auction ... read more

Gord Duff

gduff@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

Gord Duff began his journey with RM Sotheby’s in 1998. Since then, he has gained an intimate knowledge of a variety of marques a... read more

Jake Auerbach

jauerbach@rmsothebys.com

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Jake Auerbach got his start in the automotive industry at an early age, spending his summers during high school working at a classic c... read more

Kurt Forry

kforry@rmsothebys.com

+1 717 623 1638
California, United States

Having worked for Bonhams’ Automobilia department for over 10 years, Kurt Forry joined RM Sotheby’s with more than a decad... read more

Matt Malamut

mmalamut@rmsothebys.com

+1 805 231 6410
California, United States

A long-time car enthusiast and Southern California native, Matt studied Automotive Technology at San Diego Miramar College and complet... read more

Michael Squire

msquire@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Michael Squire joined RM Sotheby’s European Division in the summer of 2016. He comes to RM with a prestigious racing background ... read more

Mike Fairbairn

mfairbairn@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 352 4575
Ontario, Canada

As one of the three founding partners of RM Sotheby’s, Mike has a long-standing interest in the classic car industry. Graduating... read more

Oliver Camelin

ocamelin@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 75 0110 7447
United Kingdom

With an extensive background in exotic sports car history and sales, a particular passion for American curves, and fluency in three la... read more

Paul Darvill

pdarvill@rmsothebys.com

+44 (0) 20 7851 7070
United Kingdom

Paul Darvill joined the RM Sotheby’s European team at the beginning of 2015. Paul holds a degree in French and Politics from the... read more

Pete Fisher

pfisher@rmsothebys.com

+1 519 784 9300
Ontario, Canada

Pete Fisher was first introduced to antique cars in high school, working for Classic Coachworks in his hometown of Blenheim, Ontario. ... read more

Shelby Myers

smyers@rmsothebys.com

+1 310 559 4575
California, United States

Shelby Myers grew up with the classic car industry infused into every aspect of his life. He had the unique opportunity to watch the R... read more

Tonnie Van der Velden

tvandervelden@rmsothebys.com

+31 653 84 19 60
United Kingdom

Tonnie Van der Velden joined RM Sotheby’s European division in September 2015 as a Car Specialist. A lifelong enthusiast, Tonnie... read more