1988 Toyota Tercel Reviews - Page 2 of 2

1988 Toyota Tercel Hatchback DX 1.8 from North America

Year of manufacture1988
First year of ownership2001
Most recent year of ownership2002
Engine and transmission 1.8 Manual
Performance marks 8 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Dealer Service marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 9 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.8 / 10
Distance when acquired350000 miles
Most recent distance372000 miles

Summary:

It keeps going, and going, and going

Faults:

Rings had to be redone 320000.

The clutch went at 340000.

General Comments:

This cars has great gas mileage even with age.

It requires little repairs, and starts up in the morning without problems.

A car highly suitable for a student.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 24th November, 2002

1988 Toyota Tercel Deluxe Wagon 4wd 1.5 Liter from North America

Year of manufacture1988
First year of ownership1995
Most recent year of ownership2002
Engine and transmission 1.5 Liter Manual
Performance marks 5 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Dealer Service marks 0 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 10 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
6.6 / 10
Distance when acquired180000 kilometres
Most recent distance300000 kilometres
Previous carToyota Tercel

Summary:

My 1st born

Faults:

Where to Start.

1st Tercel 87 wagon.

Too many Constant Velocity joints (axles) to count.

Hand brake would never work right.

Suspension overhaul on its 13th birthday.

3 windshield.

14 cans of bondo.

Frame snapped at one point (welded)

Gas tank leak and repaired.

4wd linkage broke just before junking her.

2nd car, 88 model.

CV joints again.

Worn Driver seat.

Front suspension needs replacement.

Rust.

General Comments:

Unbelievable Phenomenal vehicles.

I live in eastern Canada and together with my family we've gone through 4 of these bad-boys, 2 of them were mine, and I can honestly say I've put them through the worst.

They are great on gas, when the tanks aren't rusted at the filler neck.

Roomy, I've moved an entire Dorm room in one trip. and a 7' long couch fit snuggly in the back. and I currently have the cargo area filled with stereo equipment and still get the groceries with ease.

Easy to work on, basic mechanic tools need for minor repairs. Requires body work annually if you live in Canada or wherever salt is used.

4wd, is what gives these cars their personality. They are little jeeps stuck in a Japenese uni-body. Snow is no match for this car, throw some studded winters on and ground clearance becomes your only worry.

The only thing I dislike about this car is the lack of upgrades you can do to it. 62 BHP is not enough, although it does the trick to squeal tires from 1st to 2nd with the manual. The ground clearance could have been higher as well or liftable, and that annoying key/door buzzer can luckily be unplugged.

This car is the best thing Toyota has ever produced, In my humble opinion.

If only they could talk.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 27th July, 2002

1988 Toyota Tercel DX Hatchback 1.5 liter from North America

Year of manufacture1988
First year of ownership1996
Most recent year of ownership2001
Engine and transmission 1.5 liter Manual
Performance marks 7 / 10
Reliability marks 7 / 10
Comfort marks 3 / 10
Dealer Service marks 4 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 8 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
5.8 / 10
Distance when acquired89000 miles
Most recent distance104000 miles
Previous carOldsmobile Cutlass

Summary:

Cheap but reliable

Faults:

Exhaust system needed replacing.

Clutch went out.

Burns oil.

Has carbon build-up problem (I'm told this is typical of this engine).

Hates to start when it's cold.

General Comments:

I use this car as a second car to haul kids and groceries in. For that purpose, my little "toy" is efficient, if not comfortable. I warn anyone not to buy a Tercel if you plan on using a baby car-seat in it, because the back seat is too small for a parent to climb back there to strap the baby in.

It doesn't like to start up on cold mornings, but once it starts, the engine is peppy and runs fine. I have had few problems with break-downs. The car is reliable, and with it's low gas-milage, it's cheap to keep on the road.

If you are considering buying this model, I would suggest you take it to a mechanic and have the carbon checked on the engine. My mechanic has told me that this is a typical problem with these cars, and it is very expensive to have the carbon cleaned out. I was told that it was terminal to the car, and that I would be better off to trade it in. Well, that was 2 years ago, and the car still runs, no better and no worse that it did when the problem was diagnosed. I would love to hear from others experiencing this same problem.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 25th June, 2001

1988 Toyota Tercel from North America

Year of manufacture1988
First year of ownership2001
Most recent year of ownership2001
Engine and transmission Manual
Performance marks 10 / 10
Reliability marks 10 / 10
Comfort marks 7 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 10 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
9.3 / 10
Distance when acquired140000 miles
Most recent distance145000 miles
Previous carChevrolet Camaro

Summary:

I love my car

Faults:

Completely fried clutch.

Radiator dry rotted.

Mouse nest in the heater.

General Comments:

I love it! It's cheap, fast for an economy car and economical. My brothers and I have dubbed it the "Tercel from Hell". All the problems listed above happened because my brother enjoyed running it at 80 mph down a dirt lane. I just wish it had a little more horse power, then Mustangs beware!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 10th May, 2001

Average review marks: 7.5 / 10, based on 8 reviews