1996 Toyota Corolla Reviews - Page 2 of 10

1996 Toyota Corolla DX 1.8 gas from North America

Model year1996
Year of manufacture1996
First year of ownership1998
Most recent year of ownership2010
Engine and transmission 1.8 gas Automatic
Performance marks 10 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 9 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
9.0 / 10
Distance when acquired3200 miles
Most recent distance513109 miles
Previous carDatsun 280ZX

Summary:

I went and got a 2007 Toyota Corolla LE

Faults:

My engine and transmission is original.

Cleaned intake twice, replaced driver's seat, replaced fuel pump and relay.

Replaced starter, alternator, plugs, wires, cap, rotor.

I have only one thing to say; I went and got a 2007 Corolla.

General Comments:

The car itself is great for highway use and more.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 18th October, 2010

1996 Toyota Corolla DX 1.8 Liter DOHC inline 4 from North America

Model year1996
Year of manufacture1996
First year of ownership2010
Most recent year of ownership2010
Engine and transmission 1.8 Liter DOHC inline 4 Automatic
Performance marks 6 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 9 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.8 / 10
Distance when acquired177967 miles
Most recent distance178343 miles
Previous carPlymouth Neon

Summary:

The car that made Toyota, Toyota

Faults:

I just purchased the car, and have only put on a few hundred miles. I purchased the car with a few small issues however:

The front passenger side power window switch is dead. The passenger side window works using the drivers' side master switch, but not with the switch on the passenger's side door.

The drivers' seat seatback shakes side to side slightly.

It needs an alignment. The car tracks straight, but the steering wheel is turned a bit to the right.

It will need a timing belt and a radiator soon. I bought the car knowing this. I will be doing all the work myself, so it's not a big deal to me.

These are the only issues I've found with the car, and they are all either very small problems, basic maintenance, or just wear and tear.

General Comments:

I was originally looking for a Corolla with a manual transmission, however, I couldn't pass this one up. The owner was asking $2400, however, I was able to get it for $1900 (I have not been able to find ANY Corolla ANYWHERE in this condition for less than $3000. Very happy).

I did spend the $30 before I bought it to get a Carfax. Thankfully, it was clean. No accidents and only 2 owners. It's in great shape. Despite having always been here in Massachusetts, it has almost no rust. The body itself is in excellent shape, and the underside and suspension have very little rust.

The paint is a little faded, and the clear coat has come off in a few spots, but nothing real major. The interior is in surprisingly excellent shape, it almost looks new, no joke. The fit and finish is great and there isn't a single squeak or rattle.

I like the way the car drives. It handles the corners pretty well, although it doesn't give you a ton of feedback. Overall the handling is acceptable. It doesn't handle as well as my Neon, however, I didn't buy it to outperform the Neon in that aspect. I'm looking for some reliability this time.

I see a lot of complaints of this car being dangerously slow with the automatic transmission on this site. I must say that I disagree, I think it has pretty decent acceleration. It has no problems getting around town or moving at highway speeds. It is slower than my Neon (when my Neon was running) but once again, I'm only looking for something more reliable.

It's extremely comfortable compared to my Neon. The Neon tells you about all the bumps. There's a few roads in town that I used to avoid altogether because they hurt so bad. This Corolla handles the bumps very well. Much more comfortable. Haven't had any real long drives in it yet, so I can't say how the seats feel after a few hours of sitting in them at this time.

The engine is very quiet and smooth. I've grinded the starter once already (couldn't hear it running!) I have not had a chance to calculate gas mileage just yet.

Some of the things I don't like would have to be the fact that it's an automatic. I was really looking for a manual, but I just couldn't pass up an offer like this.

I was also hoping for a Japanese-built model (you've seen what we've done to Toyota with our American-built models, right?) I had a bad experience with an American-built Honda Civic once, which shows me even more how low our quality control is here in the States. I had always had good luck with Honda's before that Civic, and they were all Japanese-built. This is actually my first Toyota. I hope this will last as long as my old Honda's did. Even with close to 200,000 miles, it has about 300,000 more to go to really show me it's got what it takes.

I will also miss the acceleration I got with my Neon (but not the repairs!).

Overall, I'm very happy with my purchase and thus far have no regrets. I will continue to update this review as long as I own the vehicle.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 11th May, 2010

28th May 2010, 15:50

Original reviewer with an update:

I'm at about 178,600 miles now (I don't drive to much). I just replaced the radiator, never had an overheating issue, but I'm glad I replaced it. Especially after getting a better look at the old radiator when I took it out, it was in very bad shape.

I also replaced the thermal vacuum switch, which had caused a slight vacuum leak. I don't think I mentioned this in my review, however I have fixed it and it is now running even smoother.

I installed an aftermarket Kenwood Audio system in it, and even with the factory speakers it sounds great.

I did have two unexpected repairs come up. I had to replace the rear sway bar links (that was only about $60, not really a big deal) and I also had to replace the exhaust manifold. It had a crack right down the center that I didn't notice when I purchased it.

I've only filled up about 3 times now, and each time when I calculated the mileage it returned about 36 MPG. And that's with about 90% around town driving. Not bad at all. I will be driving it up to Vermont to visit family this July, and I really can't wait to see how it does for gas mileage on the highway.

I haven't replaced the timing belt yet, but upon inspection, it was in decent shape. It easily has another 10,000 miles on it. I'll replace it along with the water pump as preventative maintenance before winter comes this year (it's a non-interference engine, but I don't want to be stranded obviously).

I'm very happy with my purchase and so far have zero regrets.

Average review marks: 7.8 / 10, based on 32 reviews