1988 Toyota Camry SE 2.0 litre from Australia and New Zealand




Manual steering rack was replaced at 420,000 km due to a bush inside wearing, and making a knocking noise when going over bumps. Mechanic said only the bush needed replacing, but it being a sealed unit, the whole rack had to be replaced.

Other than that, normal wear and tear replacement parts.

Alternator at 380,000 km, 3 batteries over last 7 years, tyres wear evenly to 50,000km, timing belt every 100,000km.

Needed a new water pump at 390,000km; I think it was damaged when the mechanic replaced the timing belt, cracked bolt housing on pump. Since the replacement of the water pump, have topped up the radiator with a mouthful of coolant for last 4 years/100,000km.

6 years after buying the car, have finally had the relay replaced; aircon will now run without overheating and be turned off, as only 1 fan worked. Both fans run now when using it with 45 degrees outside. Before, when the needle rose, it turned the aircon off.

General Comments:

One of the most reliable cars I have ever had. Has never missed a beat in 7 years, except when one of the HT leads was faulty. Even after driving 1500km in 1 day, averaging 120-130 km/h, it just keeps going.

Handles as good as any sports pack car, with good tyres, sticks to the road like glue. Can hold its own against sports cars 1-2 years old.

Relatively economical still after 22 years, 550 km almost on 3/4 tank, highway driving.

By the way, it is an S/wagon, auto.

Will hit 500,000km before end of this year.

Can sit at 120km/h forever.

Doesn't blow smoke.

Top up oil 1/2 litre every 1000km.

No oil leaks!

No rust!

Auto serviced once in 7 years, gears change perfectly.

Had a Ford Falcon once with 250,000km on the clock when bought, 6 years old. Front wheel fell off after 1 trip to Brisbane, bearing collapsed. Transmission replaced twice in 2 years. Full of rust.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 23rd June, 2010

1988 Toyota Camry from North America


It's the only car I will need in my lifetime


Leaks a little power steering fluid, but does not cost much to fix.

General Comments:

This is the best car I have ever owned. Yes it has high miles, but you cannot tell at all!

The transmission has never been rebuilt, and neither has the engine. It's funny that a car with that many miles has only had leaf springs replaced.

The front fenders are rusted through, but I am going to get replacements off of partstrain.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 16th March, 2008

17th Mar 2008, 11:33

You would be amazed how much better cars have become over the last 19 years.

17th Mar 2008, 18:24

Stick with the '89 if you like it. Many new cars look really ugly.

1988 Toyota Camry LE 4 cylinder from North America


Reliable, Gas-Efficient, Affordable, Comfortable...can't get all of those qualities in a Hummer


Broken CV Axle needed replacement (Approximately $170.00).

Needed to clean battery terminals (Free, I used baking soda, water and a toothbrush)

After I cleaned the engine, some water had gotten into the distributor cap so I needed to pay 50 dollars to get that dried up.

I backed up out of my driveway and hit a curb... flat tire cost 90 bucks.

Nothing major to repair!

General Comments:

I originally bought this car (1988 Camry LE) for 800 dollars with 174,000 miles on it, and I don't regret one cent spent on this car.

I have taken a couple long road trips in this car (One was a 6 hour trip to Tennessee and the other was a 3 hour trip to Helen, Georgia), and it's surprisingly comfortable on the interstate.

The car is in wonderful shape, and my next car will undoubtedly be a Toyota. I get 30 mpg and fill my gas tank once a month. This car is easy to drive and it's really comfortable to ride in.

One day the car had to be towed to the mechanics shop because it wouldn't start (water had gotten into the distributor cap while I was cleaning the engine)...the guy who towed my car said he had the EXACT same car (same color, model... even the same hubcaps) and he sold it to his friend with 200,000 miles on it.

That friend of his STILL drives the car to this day and it has over 500,000 miles and it's STILL driving wonderfully. I look forward to saving thousands of dollars because of this Japanese wonder and driving it into the ground! ANY car that is a late 80s or early 90s Toyota that has a 4-cylinder engine would be great for highschool and college students.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 10th April, 2007

11th Apr 2007, 01:25

How does drying a distributor cap cost $50??? A new one wouldn't cost that!

11th Apr 2007, 12:31

"Reliable, Gas-Efficient, Affordable, Comfortable...can't get all of those qualities in a Hummer"

Are you insinuating that some old Toyota is better than a Hummer? Now I've got nothing against Toyota and own personally own a 2006 prius, but lets be reasonable here. You buy an old Toyota for a decent set of wheels to putter around with. You buy a Hummer because you you've worked hard and can afford it and feel like buying a good looking and fun prestige vehicle. Though there will always be that sorry crowd that mortgages their house for a Hummer and drive around like they're somebody important only to lose everything a year later when they can't afford to keep it any longer. But we can point and laugh when that happens.

11th Apr 2007, 19:21

The Hummer offers zero advantages over a car in the real world, and isn't significantly better off road when compared to other SUVs.

15th Apr 2007, 09:44

Depends what Hummer you're talking about. The H1 will shame any pedestrian SUV off road, and is an excellent vehicle for people who live in the countryside. The H2 is all about style, prestige, and luxury while still maintaining the usefulness of a true truck based SUV. The H3... is pointless.

15th Apr 2007, 15:28

The H1 is far too wide to handle the outdoors like a basic Jeep Wrangler can. It is a stupid vehicle for people who "live in the countryside" since it gets 8 mpg and offer ZERO advantages over anything from a Subaru Outback to the aforementioned Jeep, depending on circumstances.

H2 is simply a classless, useless vehicle that caters to people who have endless insecurity. It fails as a driver's car on every level and doesn't offer any real advantages off road either.

30th Dec 2007, 10:31

Why even spend money on it? Just take the cap off and dry it out. I did that yesterday. Spent $0.00. All you need it a phillips screw driver.