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What’s Missing Here?: Cold Start

Cs Celicadash

1970s and 1980s car interiors are still sort of my baseline when it comes to my brain-template for being inside a car. I suppose that’s because those were the first interiors I ended up in, and must have imprinted on all those red and blue textured plastics with the fake stitching and the unashamed and ironic use of plaid. I was looking at this pleasingly blue-and-plaid 1980 Toyota Celica interior, complete with fake walnut or burlwood or whatever the hell they call that fake wood that looks kinda like meat, and noticed something. Well, really, I noticed the absence of something.

You’ve probably figured out what it is already: a radio! If I recall other Celicas of the era, the radio would have been fitted into the (was it double-DIN in 1980? No, looks like that standard, also called ISO 7736, didn’t get standardized until 1984) hole in that little cubby thing behind the shifter. If you were too cheap for a radio, you just got that little cubby, perfect for storing cassette tapes that you could not play in the radio you didn’t have!

Yeah! Really don’t crank up that nonexistent volume!

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47 Responses

  1. I had a 1981 Celica with the component radio. The radio receiver was in the black stop to the right of the clock. The cassette tap deck was in the recess to the left of the cigarette lighter. The amp/equalizer/power button and REVERB button was in the cubby behind the shifter. Awesome sound for the time. Every ten years or so I would have to have the receiver re-soldered because the boards would dry out and crack.
    The car was awesome though. As fast as mustangs and Camaro’s at the time. It drove those guys nuts that I’d get a better start then them and then they could only catch me if I missed a shift.

  2. I sold Nissans in the late 80s. The Sentras and pickups never had radios or A/C. For $500 we sold some no name AM-FM cassette unit with two speakers that was installed by a local audio store. We also sold Nissan A/C for $500, just like the port installed item. About 70% of customers took the radio. Maybe 10% took the A/C. This was the South. I love music, but what the Hell?

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