In the 1980s, when Audi Quattro was introduced into the World Rally Championship, the 4WD element became indispensable for aiming victory with the success of Audi Quattro. Meanwhile, in 1982, a new regulation by FIA came into effect. In 1983, when WRC was to be held in accordance with its new Group B regulations, Toyota introduced their new machine TA-64 Celica Twin Cam Turbo. The Group B regulations eased production restrictions and increased the freedom in machine development. While each manufacturer was turning to special machines such as 4WD midship, Toyota selected 2WD rear-wheel-drive for Group B machine. The suspension also used McPherson struts on the front and 4-link rigid on the rear. By adopting a simple mechanism, it weighted 1150 kg and was highly durable and reliable. The engine used a twin plug with an in-line 4-cylinder DOHC8 valve displacement of 2090cc and equipped with two ignition plugs per cylinder. The turbocharged engine used the multiplication factor of 1.4 to calculate engine displacement that fitted in the displacement class of 3 liters or less. In addition, the Celica was equipped with a KKK turbocharger and demonstrated a power of 320 to 340 horsepower.
The base vehicle was the 3rd generation Celica which was introduced in 1981, and the 1800GT-T equipped with a twin cam turbo that was lined up in 1982. In the same year, the 1800GT-TS was released as a Group B homologation model with a production obligation of 200 units, and was finished into a rally car by Toyota Team Europe (TTE), which was active as a Toyota works team at that time.
The TA-64 Celica Twin Cam Turbo debuted at the 1000 Lakes Rally in Round 9 of the WRC held in August 1983. The Yuha Kankunen team finished in 6th place overall, and then Björn Waldegård won the 11th round Rallye Côte d’Ivoire in October. The following year, 1984, the Celica chose several rallies to participate to improve its ability. At the 4th round safari rally held in April, the Waldegård team won the championship by running through the extreme stage. Furthermore, in 1985, the Kankkunen team won the championship in the same 4th round safari rally, and the Waldegård team also finished in 2nd place. The 1-2 finish added a flower to the victory for the second consecutive year. In 1985, the Celica also won the 11th round Rallye Côte d’Ivoire with a 1-2 finish and won two rallies set in the African continent. In 1986, not only did the Celica won the safari rally for the third time in a row, but also won the Cote d’Ivoire rally with 1-2-3-4, which dominated the 1st to 4th places. While 4WD high-performance machines were becoming the mainstream, the Celica was tough with its light weight, reliability, and high durability, and demonstrated its power in extreme rallies. The Toyota TA-64 Celica Twin Cam Turbo made its name in the history of the rally.
1000 Lakes Rally
Rallye Côte d’Ivoire