There’s More to That Perfect 1992 Toyota Supra Turbo-to-RAV4 Trade-In Story
A lot more.
A few days ago, The Drive reported on the trade-in of a perfectly pristine 1992 Toyota Supra Turbo. It had 12,000 original miles, both a Targa top and manual transmission, and it was finished in the wonderfully ‘90s paint of Teal Metallic. It also came with a story about the owner trading it in for a new crossover and subsequently depressing the hell out of us. Turns out, there’s more to this Supra’s story.
After we ran the story, Nick Fisher of Koch 33 Auto—a dealership chain in Easton, Pennsylvania—reached out to us to set the record straight. Everything we covered about the car’s spec, the 7M-GTE engine, the manual transmission, 12,000 original miles, and the trade-in for a crossover was correct. But some of the details surrounding the trade were slightly different. Fisher gave us the full lowdown.
“One of my sales guys came to me and said, ‘Nick, you gotta hear this,’” said Fisher in an email to The Drive, adding, “‘My customer has a 1992 Supra in his garage with 12k miles!’” Fisher knew he had to hear more, saying, “I sat and talked with the man for 2 hours before I could convince him to even tow it to the dealership to confirm a final [trade-in] number. We were his second visit as the first stop only offered him a few grand for his pride and joy. I reassured him that our dealership and our dealer principal, Kurt Koch, are true car people. And that this is a car that needed to be shared. I let him know he could visit it and drive it as we would be keeping it on our showroom floor just a few feet from the desk where we negotiated.” In our eyes, that’s one of the most stand-up things we’ve heard a dealership do.
When asked about the trade-in, Fisher declined to state how much Koch valued the car for, simply saying, “It was a number where we were both comfortable and happy.” As for the aforementioned crossover, our original reporting was that the Supra Turbo was traded in for a Toyota C-HR, but Fisher said it was actually for a new Toyota RAV4. But the trade-in story goes deeper. Two hours after both parties agreed on the final Supra value, the original owner said he had one more car to trade-in, a Scion iQ. According to Fisher, “It’s just the cherry on top of the story because it still makes me laugh looking back on it all.”
As for that mint 1992 Teal Metallic Supra Turbo, it was in a state of disrepair. Fisher told The Drive, that “The toughest part of the purchase was the fact that I was buying a car that didn’t run! There was a certain leap of faith.” But Koch 33’s techs were up for the challenge of reviving the now-classic Supra Turbo, which hadn’t moved since 2005. “Our shop foreman, and Toyota Master Tech, Jeff Herstine got to work with a glow in his eyes,” says Fisher, adding, “Turns out the fuel sat since 2005 and wreaked havoc on the tank and pump. We couldn’t find a replacement tank, so we sent out the original to be cleaned, treated, and restored. A new battery and tires and this old girl was ready again!”
After the restoration was complete, Herstine told Fisher, “Nick, there isn’t a new car on this lot that runs as quiet or as smooth as this motor.” The tech then “gloated about the quality of the cars produced by Toyota at the time.”
The Supra Turbo is also in good company on Koch 33’s showroom floor, sharing the space with a “fully restored Toyota FJ40 and a FJ25.” But don’t presume that because it’s on the dealership’s floor that it’s for sale. According to Fisher, who spoke with Kurt Koch, the owner said, “You know what, Nick. I don’t think I can bring myself to sell this car. The car and the story are just too special.” We’re inclined to agree, we just hope that either Fisher, Herstine, or Koch drive the now semi-restored Supra Turbo as it was meant to be driven. It shouldn’t sit for another 14 years.