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What say ye, TCL? How rare is this beast?
Extremely - that's a grey-market, non-US-spec car (that's been retrofitted with single square headlights). The front end design is common to export Cressidas for Europe and Asia, though it's distinct from any JDM version of the platform.
 

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Extremely - that's a grey-market, non-US-spec car (that's been retrofitted with single square headlights). The front end design is common to export Cressidas for Europe and Asia, though it's distinct from any JDM version of the platform.
Stuff like this is why I wish there was some sort of grey-market registry around... I wonder what other random cars are lurking around the United States.
 

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Indeed! Sometimes I'll see something odd from the eighties and wonder just why anyone would have imported it. :D

This is a US-spec Cressida front end:


Here's a better shot of the front end the brown car has, though it appears to have been fitted with US-spec single square sealed beams and a US-spec bumper:


As far as I know the US never got a diesel Cressida, only six-cylinder gas. The diesel is probably the "L" engine, as seen in Toyota trucks in the US at the time, a 2.2L 4cyl indirect-injection non-turbo producing about 60-65hp.
 

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Heh, I was 10 yrs old when the '81 Cressida first hit the market. I believe it was the first car in the US that had motorized shoulder belts, a.k.a. passive restraint system. My dad was seriously considering the 1981 Datsun 810 Maxima at the time, so I suggested that he check out the Cressida as well. He ended up buying a new Accord sedan in 1982, which was the first year that the second generation was introduced.
 
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