Well, I know the solidity of these babies. I have gone 110+ on my 77 liftback 5 speed manual. She drives like a dream, original air conditioner, original charge, cold as ice. Granted it was parked since about 1983, but still, girls love 'em!
I only had a four speed in mine, but after 100 or somewhere near there the speedometer needle vibrated so much it ranged from 80 to 120 but then all the gauges did that until I replaced the tires, but for the first while it was my poor mans tire pressure monitor, bad vibrations below 80mph meant I needed to put air in the tires anything over 100 was normal. I am not sure about chicks loving them, but the make good trampolines if you get bored enough and don't care to much about putting a few hundred more dents in your car. Another cool feature was that the little rubber bumper guards are just wide enough to fit a shopping cart in-between them which allows you to propel the cart up to about 80mph, depending on the size of the parking lot, before you slam on the brakes and let the cart hurtle its merry way to its untimely death. Long live the 70's Corollas and teenage guys in small towns with nothing to do. Oh, it would also blow the doors off any Hyundai Pony in town, but so would the snail I just put salt on.
Tough? Hell Yeah! I´ve owned a couple of KE´s, a 1977 KE-30 and now a ´73 KE-25. I bought a warm 4-k (1300cc) and 5 speed cheap, and found that the engine was on the way out... It breathed in a washer from a loose air cleaner mount on top of the Weber. Made a Horrible rattle noise until it chewed it up and spat it out the exhaust. Still made good power.
Some time after that, It threw the thrust washers into the sump, would not start if you had your food on the clutch, as there was about 2mm end float on the crank. The Engine did not die! The gearbox was the part that let go.
Tough Engines! I don´t recommend that you do this to yours, but if you look after it (give it oil and water) your KE will look after you.
The chicks definitely don´t dig them in Australia, They like Commodore Utes (boring!)
The other good thing is that the engines are modestly powered in stock form (maybe underpowered) but a few cheap modifications will bring a smile to your dial...
I know that a well tuned 1200 (3-k) will do over 100mph, but it´s a white knuckle ride! not for the faint-hearted.
I Love my Corolla!
I have a 77 corolla deluxe 1588 cc, mine is a atto though, but its all original. Its up to 337,000 miles and still going runs like a dream. Bought it from a family member took real good care of it, clean ass hell no rust at all only thing that has had to be replaced is the bottom radiator hose I paid $100.00 and my old lady hates this car.
I just bought a '77 liftback with the 1588 and also an auto from the original owner (84 year old lady).
The dash has a little crack. The seats, carpet, and headliner are perfect. The car has 132,000 miles on it and runs great.
My girlfriend has an 07 Tacoma and I have an '06 Colorado.
Both sit most of the time. We love the Corolla. Who would have thought???