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2002 Toyota Mark 2 Blit ir-v owner review

  • 1JZ-GTE engine
  • Rarity/conversation piece
  • Extremely well made
  • Fuel economy
  • Hard to find second hand parts
  • A bit small if you're a bit bigger

About the Toyota Mark 2

V B purchased this Toyota Mark 2 used for $18,500 (including all on-road costs) in 2021. V B would buy this car again because: “The value for money is astounding, no modern car gives so much for so little money. It’s not as hard to find parts as what some people might think, turbo inline-six is hard not to love, and with Toyota reliability/Lexus levels of refinement it’s a really great package deal if you can swallow the fuel economy”

How reliable has your car been? Tell us about any issues.

As with any car over 10 years old, there’s bound to be a few age-related issues. Thankfully, my example only had 83,000km on it when I bought it so there were very few issues. It needed a transmission mount $130 brand new from Toyota, all the bushes were $450 used aftermarket – and they’re cheaper and better quality

Aside from that the car doesn’t really have anything age-related that’s starting to deteriorate, JDM Toyotas are way more well-made than the Aussie-delivered models

What do you think of the ownership experience with your car?

I’ve had a fair few cars in my short time on the road; two VE Commodores, a Holden Cruze, Hyundai Excel, VW Scirocco. This Toyota (bar the Excel) has been the oldest car I’ve owned, but it’s by far the most well-made and refined

Are you happy with the price and features of your car?

Price was great in today’s market of cars with a 1JZ-GTE in it, most are fetching at least $7000 more than what I paid so I can’t complain with that.

It may not have all the modern gimmicky features people pay big money for in a modern car, but it’s definitely not short of useful features.

It has auto lights with HID, auto-folding mirrors, automatic air-conditioning with swing vent function, air purifier/ioniser, an electric soft-closing tailgate, lots of ambient interior lighting, and heaps of rear storage even as far as wagon standards go

What do you think of the performance and economy of your car?

Performance is great even in stock form, the ease of tuning can make it go from a sensible family car to a monster with realistically not a lot of money. The car handles extremely well, even for a 1.6-tonne wagon.

Fuel economy however is terrible. My last car was a cammed Series II VE SS V and it would average about 14L/100km, my stock turbo inline-six is about the same. It costs $100 to fill it and around town you get about 450km of range, on the highway it’ll get close to 650km.

What do you think of the technology in your car?

For the age it feels very ahead of it’s time, there’s a lot of cars on sale now days where HID/LED lights are an expensive option which was standard on my Mark 2 Blit, Apple CarPlay wouldn’t go astray but isn’t hard to put in the car when I get to that point

What do you think of the ride comfort and handling of your car?

Mine is on aftermarket coilovers so the ride can be firm around town, on the highway it’s quite smooth and the seats are extremely soft which makes for a nice ride on the open road.

Being that it’s on sports suspension it feels very glued to the road, I’ve got a lot of confidence in the cars abilities in any situation.

Do you have any additional comments about your car?

Don’t be afraid to own something different. JDM cars are becoming extremely popular and their value is increasing all the time, most JDM Toyotas are way more well equipped than what we get here in Australia.

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Show Breakdown
Technology 5
Reliability 9.5
Ride & Handling 8
Price & Features 10
Performance & Economy 7.1
Ownership Experience 10