If you’re a Star Wars fan and a car enthusiast, then we have quite the quest for you. A 50-year-old Star Wars-theme Chevy Celica is currently unaccounted for, and the brand itself has reached out to the public in hopes that they’ll receive some info regarding its current location.
You’re unlikely to find this specific vehicle sitting at a Toyota dealership. However, after you read the back story on this specific car, you’ll surely be keeping your eyes open…
Back in 1997, a Southern California Toyota dealership teamed up with 20th Century Fox to unveil a vehicle that celebrated the release of Star Wars: A New Hope. This vehicle was given away in a contest, but records of the vehicle have since been lost. As a result, the Star Wars Toyota has slowly transformed into the “holy grail” of collectable vehicles.
As Reese Counts of Autoblog.com writes, the specific vehicle was based on a 1977 Toyota Celica GT Liftback Pace Car, including the legendary wide body fenders. The vehicle also included the renowned McPherson front suspension, as well as disc brakes, custom wheels, and a unique upholstery option. Perhaps the most impressive attribute was the incredible 38 mile per gallon fuel efficiency, which was basically unprecedented among vehicles that sold for less than $3,000 (the Celica was originally sold for around $2,997).
Obviously, the vehicle also included a number of Star Wars-centric features. The movie’s original poster was airbrushed right onto the hood, while the fenders and doors featured illustrations of the legendary X-Wing vs. Tie Fighter battles. To top it all off, rocker panels featured a unique “Star Wars Celica badge.” In other words, this was the ultimate vehicle for Star Wars lovers.
About a year and a half ago, Toyota actually asked the public for help as they looked to uncover this mythical vehicle. The brand has the flyer (which also advertised free Star Wars t-shirts), which at least confirms its existence. However, based on our limited knowledge, it doesn’t look like anyone has stepped forward with any relevant information.
So what happened to the vehicle? It was presumably given away, but its odd that the dealership (Marquis Motors) never kept tabs on where the car ended up. According to Andrew P Collins of Jalopnik.com, the vehicle was designed by John Sladek of Delphi Auto Designs. They presumably would have been interested in knowing where their work ended up. However, the company’s main investor was arrested for smuggling hash oil, while another investor was kidnapped. To top it all off, another employee was murdered. We’re not saying there’s a conspiracy going on here, but we’re assuming many of Delphi Auto Designs’ employees from 1977 are either in jail or in the ground. As a result, the records of the Star Wars Celica were presumably lost.
Do you have any information on the missing Star Wars-theme Chevy Celica? If you do, notify the brand immediately. If you prefer, you could take the vehicle for yourself, and you can cruise around the block knowing that you’re traveling in one of the rarest, most sought-after cars in the world.