1987 Toyota Tercel Reviews

1987 Toyota Tercel 3dr hatchback 1.5 12 valve 3E from North America

Model year1987
Year of manufacture1987
First year of ownership2005
Most recent year of ownership2008
Engine and transmission 1.5 12 valve 3E Manual
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 9 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.5 / 10
Distance when acquired245320 miles
Most recent distance247520 miles
Previous carToyota Tacoma

Summary:

247,520 miles and still ticking

Faults:

Just put new muffler on for 200 bucks.

Put a new seal in hydraulic clutch reserve tank.

New air filter.

New plugs, wires, and oil.

Other that this, the car is just about to hit a 1/4 million miles and purrs like a kitten.

Now for the interior. Sat for 3 years in my back yard. I put a new battery in it and it started right up; amazing. Sitting for three years though has really been hard on the interior. The Oklahoma sun has actually burned the seat to black and revealed the inside cushions.

Other than that, this car is a gold mine. I paid 300 bones for it in 2005; the best darn investment I ever made.

General Comments:

Wonderful to drive.

No A/C, no problem. It has 275-ac, which is short for 2 windows down and 75mph up and down the road.

Best car.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 12th May, 2008

1987 Toyota Tercel from North America

Model year1987
Year of manufacture1987
First year of ownership1999
Most recent year of ownership2008
Engine and transmission Manual
Distance when acquired100000 miles
Most recent distance204000 miles

Summary:

Great workhorse unfortunately rusting out in this salt belt area

Faults:

Brake rotors tend to warp after a while, then need replacement.

Other problems are usual as with any car, age and rust.

General Comments:

When I bought it, I reviewed comments on a website very much like this one (perhaps this one), and the comments are generally apt to the car. "Boringly reliable" is the one I liked best. This has been a fairly reliable workhorse, efficient (better than some new car mpg), but it is simply rusting out (I live in a salt area). I wish that Toyota still made such a station wagon, but I have heard that they don't, and I am looking for another reliable workhorse that has a nice wide rear hatch (slide in a bureau, not just a trunk as most cars) with a full-sized spare tire well, manual transmission, and an engine that keeps on going with routine maintenance, and its area that I can actually get at, and do work on if needed. Anybody have some suggestions?

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know

Review Date: 18th February, 2008

1987 Toyota Tercel 2 Door Hatchback 1.2L from North America

Year of manufacture1987
First year of ownership2006
Most recent year of ownership2008
Engine and transmission 1.2L Manual
Performance marks 5 / 10
Reliability marks 9 / 10
Comfort marks 5 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 9 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
7.0 / 10
Distance when acquired150000 kilometres
Most recent distance185000 kilometres

Summary:

2 Door Hatchback

Faults:

I'm going to separate this into two sections. Engine and interior/body.

Engine,

-The key would sometimes get stuck in the start position, this caused the starter to get overworked and eventually gave out.

-the steering wheel became loose, which made it hard to keep the car strait.

-Carburetor Problems! ha that is the only thing that actually went wrong with the car, ever since I got it it seemed impossible to set the carburetor correctly. She either didn't start on the first few turns or she didn't stop when you turned the key off. It also needed adjusting in the winter months.

Interior/Body.

-the door handles are a bit weak and seem to break easily, don't try to open the door when its locked

-the manual roll windows fall of their tracks and start to not roll up strait.

General Comments:

I have owned many vehicles and I have been under the hood of all of them. But I couldn't even tell you what the transmission looks like under the Tercel.

This car took a beating like I have never been able to give before, it was my fishing/hunting/mud-bogging car, there is simply no easy way to damage the car by hitting rocks or bottoming out, it has a perfectly placed front support beam that covers most of the engine and all of the oil pan.

In general its the biggest beater I have ever owned, its rusted and looks like it should be crushed, but even now that I have taken the insurance off to insure my truck I still don't have what it take to sell it.

I paid $300 for it and spent about $200 in repairs/oil/filter over its life with me.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 13th February, 2008

3rd Mar 2008, 18:44

Your car sounds like mine (I wrote the review just about same time as yours; mine review about it mentions its rusting out). The key spring busted so I learned to pull key back from Start to On. The driver door window glass came off its mechanism, I got in there and fixed it, and greased up the mechanism (why it busted, too hard cranking). The plastic part of door handle broke, I asked the mechanic about it, he said I could probably fix it myself cheaper, so I did. Once the driver side door was getting hard to open, I figured worn metal, so got in there with the factory manual (apparently written by well-intentioned person who hadn't actually done it, as I found only way to adjust the thing was apparently in factory before installation!), so I wedged a piece of metal in there, held in by paper clip wire (solved the problem and has worked since!). Yep, low power acceleration, and hard start below 10 degrees F (cause weak automatic choke). My previous car I'd replaced with manual choke I'd "made" myself using hints from someone's article, but this one I hadn't the spare part to fool around with (in case I messed up), so instead installed a coolant heater, and plug in car (extension cord on a timer) for frigid nights (really helps). Had some welding work done (guys in garages tend to place lift supports in places where it eventually pops open the bottoms of the rocker panels). Despite all the little things that need fixing on an old car, it has been rather remarkably reliable, but is rusting out on bottom.

Average review marks: 7.9 / 10, based on 19 reviews