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Toyota Celica (Hatchbacks / All Years)



  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,687
    Have you used this dealer before? Do they have a good reputation?

    The only reason I ask is that some of those things you mentioned have a slightly bogus ring to them, but I could be wrong. For instance, replacement of all fuel injectors at that mileage would not only be unexpected, but also would have given you significantly noticeable symptoms, like poor running and idling, lots of hesitation when accelerating, etc. And why all four injectors?

    Yes, it is possible that the radiator could develop a crack there, although for it to blow during a pressure test is mighty "convenient". No, if performed properly, the pressure test itself, and the resultant radiator failure, should not have harmed the motor in any way.

    On the plus side, a replacement radiator is something every older car will need sooner or later, and not super expensive, so if you plan to keep the car a few years it is a good investment.

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • Thanks for your ideas and suggestions. We have had virtually no problems with the dealer's service department, although they tend to be a bit "pricey", even by New York standards. It cost a nice cozy $2,500 to have all the work done. I remember when one could get a decent used car for that price. I should correct something I said before: the fuel injectors were cleaned and not replaced. I guess I am more annoyed with the seemingly lack of durability of Toyota parts (except for maybe the clutch), especially for a car, such as this Celica, that is not even close to reaching 100,000 miles, even though it is 11 years old. Hopefully, I won't have to pay another $2,500 until the year 2016, on this car, if I still have it.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,687
    that sounds like a lot of the invoice-padding that Toyota dealers are famous for. At $2500, I would challenge every single thing on there. Fuel injector CLEANING is very different from replacement, yes, and is a way for them to get an extra $100 from you to pour a $12.95 bottle of fluid in the gas tank. The fluid, of course, is the same type of injector cleaner that is mandated to be formulated into all gasoline. The only time to ever really use an extra bottle is if you are having noticeable problems of the sort I mentioned: uneven acceleration and the like.

    I say this only because Toyota are generally fairly durable, and you have a model that has proven to be particularly durable. Many of the extra things you paid for may not reflect your car's lack of durability, but rather the dealer's ability to recommend every single unnecessary maintenance operation he can think of in order to make a better profit.

    Edit...I just went back out of curiosity to look at what you mentioned you had done, and holy crap! They asked for $2500 for this???

    "I recently brought it into the dealer to have its first major (60K) tune-up + its annual state-required safety inspection. The dealer's mechanic also found the following "problems": the timing belt needed to be replaced; the power steering fluid was thick; the brake seal hose needed to be replaced; the ignition wires were arcing; the temperature switch (thermostat?) opened only half-way; the antifreeze was now "5/0" and should be "25/0"; and the fuel-injectors (4 of them?) needed to be replaced"

    60K service on this car should run around $400 at a dealer, and would INCLUDE replacement of the coolant they found so out of whack. Another $100 or so should buy you a new thermostat. State inspection would be around $100 where I live, so that's $600.

    Timing belt replacement including new water pump: $500 MAX, and then they should have reduced the price of the thermostat replacement. Now you're at $1100 or so.

    Fuel injector treatment: $100 or so, and such a rip-off at any price.

    New wires, $75, fresh P/S fluid another $75. Both acceptable after this many years. What are we at, $1350?

    I don't know what a brake seal hose is, sounds imaginary, but there are brake hoses and brake cylinder seals, maybe it was both? And then what, another $1000 for a new radiator? Just for future reference, Toyota OEM radiators (the kind the dealer would probaby use) cost hundreds and hundreds of $$ more than an aftermarket radiator, which would get you at least three or four years and save you big bucks.

    Except for the brake seal, I can't fault the car for much at this age, and of course Toyotas in the 90s were more expensive to maintain with that timing belt coming due for replacement every 90K. I haven't checked the interval for your particular car, but I hope you did. Dealers recommend timing belt replacement every 60K miles to make more money, Toyota itself only recommended replacement every 90K miles for most of the cars with this engine. If the dealer did that little "service" early, that would have been $500 or so you could have saved right there.

    I hate that dealers push so hard to sell their most profitable service items, even though the service to the customer is sometimes marginal at best, and often not warranted based on the manufacturer's own recommendations.

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    I've gotta agree with nippononly. I can't see more than $1750 worth of work there (max) for what they did.
  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    That price seems a bit stiff to me.

    Have you used the vehicle appraiser tool under the 'Used Vehicles' section of Edmunds to try and appraise that car? .vdpprice.13.Toyota*
  • jscevjscev Posts: 36
    Not judging by price, would it be worth getting rid of my 2002 Celica GT for an 02 Acura RSX Type-S? i have done comparisons and i know the acrua is better but is it worth getting, just looking for opionons..i know its off topic a little but i dont want to start a new forum, i dont even know how or if its possible anyway.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,687
    if you have a regular GT, you would gain a LOT of power, above the 6000 rpm line, by switching to the Acura.

    Having had both cars, I would add that you will get a SIGNIFICANTLY less tacky interior, better climate control (always had a hard time getting my Celica to cool down on hot days), and slightly better outward visibility, as the Acura does not come standard with the rear-end spoiler which totally blocks rear view in the Celica.

    The Acura also has a better shifter, and of course leather seats. The ride is less jittery, but as for handling it is a wash between the two cars. And the Acura has more road noise inside.

    Oh, and if you care about cupholders even a little, like I do, you will be only too glad to jettison those STUPID cupholders in the Celica, which block your arm every time you want to shift, if there is anything in them! :-)

    Footnote: if all this has you thinking you want to get an RSX-S, you should bear in mind that the '06 Civic SI has all the same mechanicals PLUS a limited slip diff, only in coupe form, not hatchback, for thousands less $$ - this car is just beginning to arrive at dealers as we speak, and should be well stocked within a month or so.

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • In my opinion the Acura isnt all that. I have a GTS 6 SP. I went and tested the RSX-S because all the mags said it was so great. I didnt think so - the celica is much more comfortable, handles better, cools great, and looks sharp. Get a 350Z or a goat.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,687
    good options, but ones that will cost you thousands more than an RSX-S.

    Plus, the GTO is all engine - the handling and much other stuff about that car are just so-so. If you want a cheaper car with the Corvette powertrain and have $10K more than the cost of the RSX-S to spend, it is your most powerful choice for the money.

    The 350Z is heavier and totally claustrophobic inside. Apart from that, it has much to recommend it, and if that is the type of car you are thinking of, definitely look at the Mustang GT as well. (same price range)

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    Actually, I would think a better upgrade from the Celica (and in keeping with the same general theme of excellent handling/steering/braking and high rpm power) would be an RX8. You also would get somewhat usuable back seats and with pricing closer to an RSX-S than to a Mustang GT.
  • I thought the Z was no more claustrophobic than the Celica. Of course they are having some tire and other quality issues which is a definite concern. My 2000 Celica has had no problems aside from a $900 broken shifter cable.

    I almost traded it for a GTO but couldnt do it because I didnt want to give up the handling, brakes, stereo sound etc. I am hoping the 350Z would be a good mix of both cars - handling and some better/more torque.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,687
    about the Celica/RSX-S in these times of pricey gas is the great fuel economy - exceeding 30 mpg isn't hard to do.

    Spend the extra money for the next step up - RX8/350Z/Mustang GT - and you get more power, but with a huge fuel economy penalty. In regular driving, those will all be 20 mpg cars, far from the Celica/RSX's 30 mpg. But if you have the money and don't mind spending more to buy and then more to gas up, they definitely have their advantages! :-)

    The poster above is right - the only one of those three with a mix of handling and comfort close to the Celica is the RX-8. The 350Z is a rock-hard ride, and the Mustang has sloppy, heavy handling.

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • jscevjscev Posts: 36
    thanks for your input..i was seriously considering the new civic si..but to me it is worth paying the extra money..i HATE the digital Speedometer..they drive me i refuse to get one, although i will test drive it anyways. i know now that i dont like digi speedos because i have driven a bunch of them. and i have to admit i do like the looks of the rsx better. also i believe it has a few more hp and torque, with just as good gas milage if not better. i have researched alot on all the cars i have been interested in because i am fine with keeping my celica but i would like to get rid of it with the miles rackin up so i can get as much trade in as possible. any further thoughts feel free to respond. thanks again
    also to all the other responses. i am not a fan of mustangs let alone fords. i live in maine and need a decent car in the winter and mustangs, 350Z's and whatnot would not be the best option..although i am fond of the 350Z but its just not resonable with gas prices, and a winter car, and way to pricy for me.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,687
    another option worth considering in this price range is the Cobalt SS S/C. I have sat in it but not driven it - it is more spacious inside than the Celica/RSX, which can be nice. :-)

    Two different mags recently did comparisons that included the RSX-S and the Cobalt S/C. In one, the RSX won by a goodly margin despite being the much older of the two, but in the other one the two cars were neck and neck - they liked that the Cobalt had much better torque for round-town driving and stoplight drags. Worth a look perhaps. It is certainly the right price, as long as it is not being marked up.

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • jscevjscev Posts: 36
    I have considered that. i dont know about you but do you liek the back end of the cobalt. i would only consider the ss anyway. i do not like the back end, first off i think the back is WAY to huge. the tail lights are suposed to resemble the vette, in a way it does but look really cheap to me. the next thing is i cannot believe they did not add dual exhaust, which is not to much of a big deal but i think it would make the back end at least look a little more sporty. chevys are my fav car but they are not worth it in the long run in reliability and trade in. who know maybe the cobalt is an exception but i would much rather stick with my celica then a cobalt. i have pretty much narrowed it down to keeping my celica or gettin the rsx..type S only. if you have any other counter offers or way to try to pursuade me to one direction please do because i am at a deadlock and cannot decide. thanks again
  • I have recently had brake work on a 2001 Celica (front pads and rear rotors turned.) Now when I go over bumps the brakes rattle...metalic clinking sounds. I returned to the dealership and was told this was normal. Is it?
  • It is normal for mechanics who don't care. Abnormal for the rest of us.

    Can you tell where the noise is coming from? Front/back, right/left? Start there. I suggest you jack up the car, take the wheel off, and tap the shield that is around the rotors. Is that the sound you hear when driving? If yes, look for a shield that the garage gorilla BENT when he removed the brakes. One of the shields may now be hitting another part of the car as a result of being bent. Most likely you yourself can use a crowbar or such, and bend the shield back away from whatever is contacting it. Be very careful not to put leverage or torque on critical parts. If you're not sure, just find a mechanic to check it for you.

    One other possibility is that the new brake pads do not have clips, and they are rattling around. I think more than likely in that case, you would feel a small clunk, a shift in the pads, when you step on the brakes, rather than what you currently are experiencing.

    Just recently, there was a pebble inside my GTS's front right rotor "hub", and it would clang against the shield as I drove. Loud like an annoying bell! The pebble must have shot into that space from above, past the caliper or such. I could not remove it from the open available space below, the gap is smaller than the pebble. So I finally reached inside with some forged needle-nose pliers, and crushed the pebble, 3 times, until the pieces were small enough to fall through the crack.
  • wscc1wscc1 Posts: 21
    I have been having a strange problem with my 2000 Celica GTS (manual, approximately 80,000 miles). It happens at times, but not always, when accelerating gently. It is most noticeable in third or fourth gear (since that's when it is easiest to notice it) but seems to happen in all gears. It appears to be just a tach problem and not an engine problem, although I'm not sure yet. As I approach 4,000 RPM, the tach will suddenly drop to 3,000 RPM and the engine seems to be a bit "soft" but the road speed by the speedometer and feel certainly doesn't seem to reflect this change. It is a sometime problem that, of course, wouldn't show up for a mechanic. Any ideas?
  • rorrrorr Posts: 3,630
    Well THAT'S an odd one.....

    A clutch that's just starting to slip perhaps? Maybe the clutch is just starting to slip, revs build a little higher than normal and as you approach the shift point and lift the throttle a bit, the clutch 'catches' and the revs drop without the vehicle speed dropping. The engine would seem a bit softer since now it's only turning 3k rpm instead of closer to 4k.

    That's my guess.
  • wscc1wscc1 Posts: 21
    It can't be a clutch problem. That would be road speed going down while revs go up. It happens (or at least noticed) when accelerating gently to 4000 RPMS - not near a shift point (7800 if you push it to the red line on the GTS). When accelerating hard it doesn't appear to happen or at least things are happening too fast to notice, but I
    also don't feel the "softness" in the motor.
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