My desire for a road-going corolla started not long after I got my KE70. I had a mule in the KE70 which could have been used for engine / driveline development, then transplanted into a road car. I never got that far, but the KE70 was still important.
Many hours spent daydreaming on the internet narrowed things down to an early model, and I found myself looking at second-generation models more often than not. The KE20 ‘coke bottle’ styling gives off a great classic chrome-bumper feel without seeming just plain old.
This daydreaming then turned more often to Gumtree browsing, and late in 2014 I found a listing for a 1973 KE20 two door sedan rolling shell. It was a reasonable price and it was at least worth a look to see what sort of condition 20s were selling for. There are plenty of potential alarm bells for rolling shells, mainly in terms of completeness and condition. I was surprised to find this one manageable for both. I took a stack of photos and pored over them that evening, myself still learning what to expect of the ins and outs of a KE20. Only a handful of parts were missing from an otherwise complete but dismantled shell. This particular shell had been resprayed a while ago and while even the second lot of paint was at the end of it’s lifetime, inspection and even tapping around with a magnet suggested that there were only a few usual weak spots in terms of serious corrosion, and hopefully no undue use of body filler.
I arranged the cash the next day and picked it up at the end of the week. These cars are compact; I used a standard flatbed tandem axle trailer!