1976 Toyota Corolla KE-30 1.2 from Norway


A Toyota is a Toyota - reliable as hell!


My seats are worn.

The engine broke down at 131000 km. due to the previous owner's inability to check the oil level and eventually change the oil. The oil pressure was quite low and the oil lamp was lit for over 5 seconds after the car had started before it went dark.

General Comments:

The car is a dream to drive. Very comfortable gearbox, it shifts like a dream, and the clutch is as easy to press in as on a newer car.

It handles well, but is not too good on iced roads if you do not know how to drive a rear-wheel-driven car. It is easy to get the rear part slipping.

The engine on these cars are very tough and can run on an on forever (3K). However, the previous owner of this car did not see to the oil pressure and oil replacement, and as a result of this, the motor died.

The dashboard lights are not too bright, and can be hard to see when driving in tunnels during the day and other such environments. However, when it is pitch black outside, you can see it.

There was once a break-in into the gas tank of the car, and as a result of this, gas is flowing back out from the fuel filling tract when pushing the accelerator to the floor.

Apart from this, the car has been rust-treated a lot of times since it was built, and it is still without rust, even though corrosion was a serious problem on these cars.

Low fuel consumption. I would definitely own another one!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 6th August, 2006

16th Sep 2008, 15:54

I got a 1976 toyota corolla that I have managed to improve a bit, with renewed dash, aluminum wheels and seats. It is a great car, not too fast though, but strong built. I have thought of selling it to buy a newer one, but sometimes I don't know because everybody says that they are so good. It is carburated, and it makes it not too economic even though it has a 1200 cc engine. Could that be improved? I will have to think more about selling it...

13th Jan 2010, 08:52

-could anything done to improve this-

Years ago I owned a Corolla 30 and wanted to improve performance etc. The 1600cc engine, gearbox and front McPherson struts (with brakes etc) from a Toyota liftback of similar vintage (also sometimes called 'Corolla' but completely different body) all were fitted without too much difficulty. Other than having to weld new engine mounts, change from wire to hydraulic clutch and cut a new hole for the gearstick, it appeared that Toyota had designed the shell so it could take these bits (but never did on the 30).

It all ended in a car that was a fair bit faster and a bit more economical (eventually uprated the rear diff also).

1976 Toyota Corolla from Australia and New Zealand


Absolutely bomb proof, the hardest car to kill I have ever come across


Clutch burnt out and piston shot out of the motor after several days of use. This was only because we gave this car an absolute hiding.

General Comments:

This car was unbelievable I got it given to me for nothing. Myself and two friends took it into the bush for a week and intentionally tried to destroy it.

We ran it into trees got it bogged, we even rolled it over twice, once on its side and once right over.

The only reason the motor blew up was when the clutch had burnt out a brick was placed on the accelerator pedal and left to run flat out. It lasted over 5 minutes like this until a piston eventually flew out of the side of the motor.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 7th November, 2005

1976 Toyota Corolla Liftback SR5 1.6 gas from North America


Potential antique pocket rocket


Car started overheating at 85,000 miles which resulted with a slightly blown head gasket. Re-rodded and cored radiator cured the problem. Still haven't replaced head gasket yet.

Clutch went out at 100,000 miles.

Master cylinder went out at 100,000 miles.

General Comments:

This car is running a Toyota 2T-C engine, which is quite popular for the mini sprint cars at the local tracks, so a Toyota enthouiast can really turn a small commuter hatch-back into an older performance car for only a slight amount of money. For the right amount of money and patience, one can pull about 175hp out of this small 1.6 litre engine.

Great with gas mileage around town and on the highway.

The SR5 and the S5 models of the Corolla come with a 4 speed manual transmission with overdrive 5th gear. So on the highway it gets about 70mph at 2800 RPM. With no emission parts (I removed mine after I left California) it has some decent rear end torque and speed. I recommend this car for first timers or for people who love a project car, trying to squeeze every ounce of horsepower out of a small import engine.

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

Review Date: 21st January, 2001

3rd Mar 2001, 17:52

I owned (2) 1976 Toyota Corolla SR5 liftbacks from '77-'86. I put 198,000 on one before the body rusted out and about 210,000 on the second one before selling it. Both ran like tops and I kick myself for having ever sold the second one.

Here it is 2001 and I am looking for one in excellent or restorable condition. The SR5 liftback was one of the best all around cars I ever owned. They handle incredibly well when fitted with aftermarket hi-perf struts, and haul butt when fitted with a pair of Webber carbs.

They were also incredibly easy to work on. A couple of bearings in the tranny went out while touring the country. I pulled the tranny and replaced the worn out parts on a picnic table! Seriously, try that on a new car!

Oh what a feeling! Oh what a great car!