1979 Toyota Corolla SE 1.3 petrol from Australia and New Zealand


Could not do without her.


Zero. One owner since new 35 years ago. So reliable and economical. I get notes under the wiper blades wanting to buy.

General Comments:

Little ripper.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 28th November, 2014

9th Aug 2015, 10:59

1979 Corolla Wagon. Bought her new in Brisbane, so just renewed her registration for the 36th time, at 358,000 km. Driving to Queensland from Melbourne this Christmas.

Always reliable and economical. Amazing little vehicle, and I also get offers to buy it regularly.

1979 Toyota Corolla DX 1.6 2T-C from North America


Very dependable car that is very economical!!


There has not been much to go wrong with the car. I replaced the brakes - complete with master cylinder, front rotors and calipers.

Replaced valve cover gasket and radiator hose.

Replaced fuel pump.

The car has rusted in Michigan.

General Comments:

I originally purchased this car for my son. It was not much to look at, but ran like a smooth sewing machine. The interior and exterior were not put together as well as the mechanical portion of the car.

I was concerned with him driving such a small car as a first car, so we got him something bigger and I drove this, and am still driving it. Not sure of the miles on the car - either 200k or 300k.

I love the manual transmission and rear wheel drive. Gas mileage is 25-32 for the wagon model. It is a great utility style vehicle, but I would not want to drive a long distance because of comfort.

Parts are readily available and easy to obtain.

I wish I would have bought this car new and driven it since 79.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 27th August, 2012

1979 Toyota Corolla CS 1.3 petrol from Australia and New Zealand


Too small, too slow and too unreliable


I wrote the review below this one when I first got the car. After a glowing review I have a few harsh things to say about this little heap of Japanese crap.

It's only done 120,000kms and this is what has happened, in approximate order:

Won't start because the contacts are rooted.

Battery goes almost dead flat over-night.

Gear box squeaks to the idle of the engine and the thrust bearing is all but non-existent.

Front left wheel is about to fall off.

Engine consumes more super thick grade oil than it does petrol.

Rust is getting out of hand.

Speedo never shows an accurate measurement, you have to look at it and get an average as it goes up and down.

Lumpy idle because the 4th piston is low on compression.

Dash charge light comes on if you turn on the heater, rear demister and lights and drive around.

That's all I can remember off the top of my head. But there are heaps more.

General Comments:

Now that I've fixed the overfueling problem, it's as slow as a wet week. Can't keep up with buses without planting your foot and revving to about 5000rpm.

I can't fit in it without reclining the seat to a 60 degree angle. But I'm 6"4' so that's sort of OK.

Still uses 10L per hundred (23.5mpg) which is pitiful considering how slow it goes. And I always keep the best tuning on it.

Took out the starter to get see if I could fix the starting problems. Turns out it's already been reconditioned in its life, which means this is the second failure in 120,000 kms. Very poor.

Doesn't handle quite as good as I one thought. The body roll as atrocious.

This is pitiful from a car maker that is supposed to have a great reputation as a quality builder. Toyota's are way overrated.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 14th September, 2009

15th Sep 2009, 20:03

Dude, the car is 30 years old... the things you've written should have died years ago. My first car was a 70's Corolla, I couldn't kill it, though I tried numerous times!

Consider the years...

15th Sep 2009, 21:43

The vehicle is 26 years old. What else do you expect?

16th Sep 2009, 23:01

As has been said, it's a 26 year old car, many cars don't last half that.

I'd be a bit sceptical as to whether those KMs are genuine too.

17th Sep 2009, 16:10

It's a 26 year old car. If you had bought a Chevy or Ford this old, it would need a ground up restoration by now.

29th Sep 2009, 04:46

How can you say that Toyota's are way overrated based upon your experience with a car that is 26 years old... of course there will be problems, you're lucky the thing still runs at all. There is a reason why Toyota is the largest and most profitable car manufacturer in the world.

1st Feb 2012, 16:20

I just picked up a 1979 KE 4 speed manual, and she runs like a dream. Haven't had any problems at all getting a bigger engine and a new paint job. I think it goes better than my Mazda MX6 95.