1984 Toyota Tercel from North America


This car is reliable and inexpensive to maintain


The front seats are worn pretty badly.

Suspension needs replacement.

The engine has a small oil leak and valves are knocking slightly.

Heater core needs replaced.

General Comments:

This car had been sitting for about a year when I bought it (for 25 cents, mind you). All I have had to do to it is replace rubber hoses and do a complete tuneup. It is running well in spite of the valve knock. On the highway I get about 34.5 miles per gallon. I love this car. Not only is it reliable, but it is easy to work on. The parts are also quite inexpensive. The only problem that I have had is not being able to find a repair book for it.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 22nd April, 2005

30th Jun 2011, 06:12

Just found a 1984 Toyota Tercel 2 door 5 speed hatchback for 1500 bucks, which is kind of high, but it's clean inside and out, no rust, and only 40000 miles on it, so will wait and see what happens with mpg. Would like to get 35mpg.

1984 Toyota Tercel DX 1.5 Liter Inline 4 from North America


A reliable car that will be there for you like a friend.


CV Boots split and spewed lube all over the wheelwell, but I replaced both front halfshafts at about 92k miles.

Valve cover gasket started leaking oil, and that was replaced at the same time.

Engine runs a little rough, and it didn't like 87 octane. 92 octane made it run better

Car makes a creaking sound every time I go over bumps, but that will get fixed here soon.

General Comments:

My grandma's neighbor originally bought the 1984 Tercel back in 1984 from Big Island Toyota in Hawaii. I obtained it back in December 2003 with about 85,000 miles on it. I recently found the window sticker that came with the car. Brand new, the car was listed as $7,675 MSRP! The only options on the car were a rear windshield wiper, power steering, and 3-speed automatic transmission.

Today, the Tercel cruises around here on Honolulu, transporting me to college, work, and home. It has been nothing short of being a good reliable car. It's unmistakable quirky wedge design means serious business when it comes to being the ultimate utilitarian vehicle.

Underneath the hood is a Toyota 3A-C inline 4, and its layout underneath the hood makes it easy to do repairs for a first timer. The maximum output is 62 horses and 67 foot pounds torque, but that's good enough to be buzzing around town. I get about 26-29 miles per gallon, and it isn't very thirsty when filling up at the pump. With the continuous proper maintenance, The engine will serve you well.

Inside, the ride is fairly comfortable and stable. The interior materials are still in excellent condition, and it still retains the quality Toyota fit and finish. With its tall wagon ceiling, cargo capacity is great, and folding the 50/50 split rear seats down makes it hold even more. The only gripes I have about the car is that it does not have air conditioning, and the radio's position in the car makes you lean forward quite a bit to adjust it.

Driving it is very easy. The blocky design makes judgment of its corners a snap. Big windows in the back and sides make backing up almost as easy as driving forward. Blind spots are absent due to the great boxy design.

I know this car will stay with me for a long time. I know I'll miss it when it comes time to sell it when it breaks down. It is an ugly duckling, but its beauty is all about no-nonsense function.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 16th July, 2004

17th Jul 2004, 16:53

That's interesting, but my '94 Tercel didn't like 87 octane gas either. With 87 octane there was some detonation, low power, and higher fuel consumption. Too bad the '94 model year had the valve seal problems. Because of that engine was consuming oil, and if not checking it every few days, the car would be very low on oil. Due to that, the rest of the engine wore down quickly and when it needed rings, I donated it with 107 000 miles. My review is there in 1994 section Tercel, "a car that deserves respect"