1989 Toyota Corolla GT-S 1.6 4-AGE Twin Cam from North America


Affordable, solid, and it will take off like a scalded cat


My rear passenger side floor pan rusted through.

My emergency brake cable broke.

My power steering pump doesn't work.

The alternator was seized.

Rust on the fenders, roof, and in the trunk.

The seals in the trunk and sunroof leak.

Torn cv boot.

General Comments:

Well to begin with most of the problems with this car are age related, but other than that it's a pretty solid car mechanically.

It was in rough, but runnable shape when I bought it, but with a bit of work I managed to get it back on the road for a year without too serious of problems.

Basically its not on the road now due to it needing a new floor pan, Emergency brake cable, tire and mirror before it can pass Motor vehicle inspection, but those should be fixed soon without too much problems and it still runs like a top.

It handles pretty tight, gets torque around 3500 RPM and up and even with the non working power steering pump it still corners great.

I find that it's a great car despite the fact that its showing its age on the outside, but around here cars have shortened life spans due to potholes and road salt, but this car has held up pretty well and is still on the go.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 1st April, 2005

4th Apr 2005, 14:39

Why would you dump money into a rustbucket?

Based on your description, it does not sound safe to drive, even with the floor replaced.

Unitized bodies that have started rusting out are bad news.


28th Sep 2005, 00:20

Yeah, keep that bugger on the road! As long as there are parts to be found, roll on. Make sure you undercoat the underside well (after repairs)and you could be set to go!

1989 Toyota Corolla DX 1.6 4AF Carburated from North America


Reliable transportation with more pep than you might think.


It liked to eat ignition coils about once a year for some reason, I never learned why it was doing that, but after I figured out that's what it was doing I became a pro at changing them out.

Had to put front struts on it shortly after purchase. I had most of my troubles on the drivers side front corner for some reason. I had to replace the wheel bearing and brake rotor on that side.

I also replaced the exhaust from the cat back, as well as a new starter. The starter is fairly difficult to change as it is on the back side of the motor. Not recommended for the novice mechanic.

General Comments:

I would likely still be driving this car if not for the fact that I am 6'4" and was sick of driving a small car.

This car is fairly reliable and most of the time easy to fix when something does break. I ran Mobile1 synthetic oil in it from day one. I'm probably the only Corolla owner on earth to put high grade oil in it. I think the extra money was definitely worth it though because the car is still running like a champ with almost 200K miles. The air always worked great even on the warmest of days.

One thing I didn't really like was having to drop the lower dash to put a new stereo head unit in.

For a four cylinder it is a fairly peppy car. On top of running Mobile1 synthetic oil I also always put premium grade fuel in it. It really isn't that much more expensive and you will see that your car runs better with better fuel.

Overall a great car for anyone on a budget or as a teens first car.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 1st February, 2005

1989 Toyota Corolla DX 1.6 DOHC from North America


As good as it gets for basic transportation


Almost nothing. Once in a while, little interior things like door handles broke; and were a nuisance to replace, but did not effect the functionality of the car in the least. The radiator once had a minor leak (but was a snap to replace myself and only cost about $30). Otherwise, at almost 170,000 it ran like the day it rolled off the showroom floor.

General Comments:

This car saved my Life. This is not a Joke, the only reason I don't still have this car is that I lost it in an accident. I was T-boned in the driver's side door by a giant SUV traveling at 35 MPH. I blacked out, and the paramedics had to cut the car to get me out, but I didn't have so much as a scratch on me. I walked away from the accident totally intact. I love Toyota corollas. Every one I have owned (1982, 1989, 1992) has been a very well built, utterly reliable car.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 2nd September, 2004