I have to agree, I test drove and inspected every Corolla from 1988 to 2011 before I decided on a 1998 Corolla sedan; they've kind of gone downhill since then. Although the newer engines and manual transmissions are nice, the new ones have obviously suffered price cutting to compete with Korean cars, with poor interior fit, less than wonderful seating, and poor visibility.
People should research cars a bit better before rushing out to buy a car that has a myth of being better. In the past few months, I have read comparisons of small cars in 4 major automotive publications. Every single one of them ranks the new Corolla last in the field. Although the top picks varied between Chevy Cruze, Ford Focus and Hyundai Elantra, ALL of the reviewers were unanimous in ranking the Corolla dead last. The other car that was also given a pretty bad rating was the outdated and unsophisticated Honda Civic. To hear all the ad hype, you'd think these cars were the greatest thing since sliced bread. They aren't.
Okay, yet another review complaining about virtually everything you should have noticed on a test drive!
You didn't notice the cramped leg room?
The plastic interior looked better on the test drive than it did when you got it home?
Also, if the stereo isn't working in auto adjustment mode, turn it off. I never use the auto volume on any stereo as it is annoying. Any vehicle I own is quiet enough at speed that there isn't a huge difference for the stereo to compensate for. That is a weak gripe at best.
Also, I haven't driven any late model car that doesn't have a jerky automatic transmission. They are all electronically controlled for fuel economy, so there is a certain amount of miscalculation involved in achieving the optimum level of efficiency. In short, you get jerks here and there, and sometimes an over revving. My Focus does exactly the same thing. However, I learned how to drive it better so it won't do it. You just have to be aware of when it happens and compensate for it. I hardly ever notice my transmission miscalculating anymore. Sometimes you have to adapt to a new car. They don't all drive exactly the same.
I was the unfortunate recipient of this new Toyota Corolla, when I recently rented a vehicle, at the Phoenix Airport.
To say this has to be the most bland, boring, dull piece of machinery built today, is an understatement. This car offers absolutely nothing, but supposed reliability.
The seats were uncomfortable, the cabin cramped. Cheap, ill fitting plastic enshrines you from every angle. The ride is harsh, it rattles like a tin can, the steering is mushy and uncommunicative to the driver in every situation.
There is extremely harsh road noise, which on the drive from Phoenix to Tucson, proved very fatiguing. It doesn't handle very well, and even though it gets decent mileage, my '07 Cobalt did much better on a gallon of gas than this thing did.
One of the really annoying traits was this car's propensity to feel like it was constantly up and down shifting, resulting in surges and lags during acceleration, and at steady cruise speeds. The cruise control was somewhat erratic, and did not hold a true 75 mph. At that speed, this car was a real penalty box to drive or to be a passenger in.
The trunk holds a fair amount of luggage, but again, nothing outstanding. The paint on this car had such heavy orange peel and a few runs, overall, it looked as if a 10 year old kid painted it with a spray can.
I found no evidence whatsoever, in any aspect of this car, in the old Japanese quality adage these cars are known for. I can only say that the Subaru Impreza I rented 2 years ago was only marginally better than this car was.
After spending a week with this car, I walked away scratching my head, trying to figure out why so many people swear by these cars. So, you get reliability (and I question how well this thing will actually hold up over the long haul) and decent fuel mileage... that is all you get... IF you can stand driving the thing long enough to reap those benefits!
Honestly, I have now rented three Toyotas in three years, and have not liked any one of them. Very overrated and very pricey for what they are.
Thank Goodness this one stayed at the airport in Phoenix. I'd hate to have to live with a car this lousy for my personal transportation!
The test drive excuse again. Things like fuel mileage and seating comfort are not things you would notice on a short test drive.
As far as the cheap interior, that is a quality issue that has plagued Toyota since day one.
Not all newer cars have jerky transmissions. The transmission in my Fusion is as smooth as silk.
"Transmission is awful. If you put your foot down, there is a marked pause before the engine revs, and then after a few seconds, the gearbox will drop a gear and you will accelerate all the time with the engine revving very high."
Pretty much all new cars have "throttle-by-wire" instead of an actual shift-linkage. This can result in "un-intended" acceleration! Remember Toyota's massive recall??
Both our Fords have "throttle by wire", and we never have jerky or unintended acceleration with either. I think this is mostly a problem on lower-quality imports.
Oh really... low quality imports huh? So why does my Ford Focus have the same jerky transmission and acceleration symptoms as described on this thread? I have learned to counter it, but it is no better than any import. You don't see as much on the Fusion because it has more gears. The more gears they put into an AT, the smoother they get. A CVT is the best route if you want smooth consistent acceleration.
I would just love for people who make such claims to please explain what is meant by the term: "Import". As mentioned over and over and over again, and as NEVER answered by those making such claims, a large number of 'American' cars are either totally imported using almost exclusively imported parts, or in some cases they're designed and built using a platform, drivetrain, design and so forth from foreign countries. Likewise, there are foreign brand vehicles that are designed, engineered, built, and sold exclusively in the US. They are NOT imports in any frame or fashion. There are cars made all over the world by both American and overseas companies. Most use an assortment of internationally sourced components. It's the way it's been for decades.
The very term "Import" means that something was "Imported" - as in it was brought in on a ship to a US port from another country, and thus "Imported". The very term "Import" has NOTHING to do with quality. There isn't some magic wand that gets waved over ships that appear in US ports that somehow turns all that enters into low quality goods. Thus if something was actually made in the USA and not imported - as in NOT brought in on a ship or a train to a US port or border, then it isn't an import. Plain and simple.
Either way, this subject has been talked about forever. We live in a global world. Get used to it.