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  • Writer's picturedwn4life

1993 Toyota Paseo

Updated: Jul 7, 2022

This is a car I bought for $1000 dollars, owned for 12+ years, and put 150k miles on it.

It was a daily driver and also a project car that taught me a ton about restoration and drive line work I'd never attempted.

It was fondly called the Highlighter as it was very bright yellow.

Take a stroll through the years I've owned it and enjoy.


This is how the car looked when I freshly bought the car for $1000 as it sits.

It was an oil leaking car when I first bought it because the guy that rebuilt the engine never changed the gaskets or seals so it dripped quite a bit until a few years later when I would rebuild it.


I went to the junk yard and found out that the Tercel models of the same years as the Paseo were basically the same car so I went looking for interior bits to change the look of the all black.

Now the process of modding and making the car better starts.

The car now was a pleasure to sit in as the interior had a more luxurious appeal to it and made some other mods along the way too.


I finally got to the engine which was in dire need of a good cleaning and made a warm air intake, changed out a few hoses, and put on a set of new wires. The car ran great and even though I was beating on this engine daily it was giving me 41mpg on a daily basis without a complaint.

Great little engine that loved to be worked.

100 hp and 2000 pounds of car made for a nimble little car that was reasonably powerful considering it's only 100hp.

I even went so far as to rebuild my own engine/ motor mounts by using 3M windshield rubber to fill in the holes of the worn out factory mounts to make them more solid. This worked perfectly and now had more solid mounts for less wheel hop and these lasted the life of the car while I had her.

I did a lot of chassis bracing to stiffen up the car and even though this car had basically no aftermarket support for parts I made due with what I could find at the junk yard and GM factory strut bars saved the day.

The above is a custom trunk brace bolted to either side of the frame rail to keep the trunk nice and solid and not shown is another brace by GM like this going across the strut towers for a functional strut tower bar.

I custom made a lower subframe brace as well and even added a universal floor or room bar to stiffen up the center of the car.

This car was solid as a rock and handled quite well with the factory suspension and the addition of all the braces. Chassis bracing it a staple to keep the suspension doing what it's supposed to do and that's to keep the tires planted. I've done this to all my cars and still do on the current project build.

More to come......


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