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Toyota Corolla

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  • sbell4sbell4 Posts: 446
    Southeast Toyota (S.E.T.) is the largest privately owned distributor in the world and the owner is mainly responsible for bringing Lexus to the United States. It serves NC.,SC.,GA. AL. and FL. S.E.T. buys the vehicles from the factory and sells them to the 164 dealers in this region. S.E.T. charges the dealer an admin fee that will average $565. This fee may sound high but there isn't any other TDA fees or advertising added so the amount is no different then any other part of the country when it comes down to the bottom line. S.E.T. uses that money for many different programs, rebates, incentives, options and other dealer support programs that the rest of the country can't have or do. We sell more then 25% of all the Toyotas in the United States out of this 5 state region and have the highest customer satisfaction scores to go with the volume.

    "Port" options are options that are available to the 164 dealers in this region. The vehicles come from the factory to either Commerce, Ga. or Jacksonville, Fl. to S.E.T.'s distribution center where "OPTIONS" (which means you do not have to have if you do not want it) are added to the vehicles. If you want a vehicle with no "port" options, all you have to do is ask. The vehicle will be delivered to the dealer just the way you want it. The time frame should be within 10-15 days if not sooner because we can see what all 164 dealers have in stock, what is at the "port" facilities, what are on the trucks, trains and ships coming into this region and we have the ability to trade and buy vehicles with each other through S.E.T.'s mainframe.

    People from everywhere buy from S.E.T. dealers because:
    (1) Customer Service
    (2) We have the availability of thousands of vehicles every month
    (3) Price
    (4) Option that you can only get in this region

    I would be happy to answer any questions you may have about S.E.T. If I do not know the answer I will find out from the proper people because this region cares about its customers and provides a service that is not equal to anyone else in the United States if not the world.
  • is300tm7is300tm7 Posts: 20
    I just helped my g/f get Corolla LE for Invoice price, so don't pay sticker!. I went through email , where i emailed dealers within 100 miles with options i want and color and asked for best price, one dealer offered me at Invoice price. Happy shopping, btw, i am from s.cal
  • eharri3eharri3 Posts: 645
    I checked the oil lever on my Mom's 1.6 this weekend and the dipstick came out bone dry! Turns out she'd been driving around for a week like that with the engine running fine, the only clue something was wrong was that the light came on. It took over 3 quarts to get it to the full level again! My mom asked if driving with little or no oil could have caused permanent damage. My best guess was that whatever residual oil had been left coating the engine had been enough to keep it sufficiently lubricated for a few days, but there still could be damage. But if there was, she might as well just drive the car until the problems showed and then figure out what to do from there than pay for an expensive engine tear down when there might not even be a problem. Anybody else got any suggestions? Should I have told her different?
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    No, that's the right advice, but wow...last time that happened to me was age 18 [39 years ago...] when my English Ford ran nearly bone dry for [I'm ashamed to say] several miles on the freeway until the temp gauge said to look under the hood, dummy. After filling the crankcase, this less-than-stellar example of fine British engineering ran for many more years with no symptoms and no further excessive oil consumption. Big Mystery...

    It's probably OK, and frankly, there isn't anything you or she can do about it now except monitor oil consumption and hope for the best.
  • mbnut1mbnut1 Posts: 403
    Corollas are remarkable for their durablity to low oil level. Based on watching how my girlfriend manages her oil level in her '95 I'm half convinced that they can run with out any oil in them at all. She routinely runs it two quarts low and often waits until either she hears lifter clatter or sees the oil light coming on. The car does use oil. Big suprise huh. But it runs as quiet and as smooth as new. I keep telling her she should give it back to Toyota as a testament to the car's durability.
  • paul_ppaul_p Posts: 271
    Just curious, how many miles on your girlfriend's '95 Corolla?
  • hawkberthawkbert Posts: 21
    Yesterday my oil light came on whenever I stopped quickly or turned quickly, so I checked my oil and discovered I was two quarts low. Considering that my oil was changed about 2400 miles ago, this seems unusual. I added non-synthetic 5W30 Pennzoil.

    I parked the car in a spot with no oil on the ground and checked it the next morning, and there weren't any drips. The engine is also very clean. I've never noticed smoke coming out of my tailpipe either, and neither have my friends when they've driven behind me a couple times.

    I've heard that Honda engines tend to burn oil at high RPMs. Could this be true of my car as well? I normally shift at 3000-3500 RPM, but I recently made a 120-mile round trip to a neighboring city where my average speed was 90 MPH (about 4000 RPM). There's also this straight, empty road near my house that I do fast runs on sometimes just for fun. I shift around 5000 RPM then.
  • dudleyrdudleyr Posts: 3,444
    Driving 90 for 120 miles will burn much more oil than usual (but not 2 quarts). Keep an eye on the level - as long as your consumption does not get worse you should be fine. Fill your oil then lay off of the high rpms for a thousand miles and check - then you will see how many quarts you are using per thousand miles. How many miles are on the car?

    Did you change the oil yourself last time? Was it full to the top? A quick lube place might not have filled it correctly, so you may have started with less oil. Or if you used a larger filter, but still put in the usual amount of oil - that could affect the reading.

    Also make sure to read the before and after with the car in the same spot. Small slopes on the road can make a large diff in oil readings (my car reads .7 qt less when it is parked on the street than when it is in the garage - because of the crown in the road)
  • hawkberthawkbert Posts: 21
    I had the oil changed at a full service place, not a quick lube place. I trust them to do good work, but I didn't check my oil after they changed it so I can't say for sure. The car has about 86000 miles on it.

    Lay off the high RPM's for 1000 miles? 4-5 weeks? Ugh...high RPMs are the only thing that makes this car fun to drive. :-p
  • Any ideas? I do not want to damage the cloth.
  • mbt1mbt1 Posts: 33
    Recent reports of sludge in both 4 and 6 cyclinders seem to involve engines that have VVT-I. Is there any chance that since the Corolla engine is also tuned to be VVT-I that it too will suffer the same fate in the long run?

    What is the invoice price for a manual CE Corolla? Edmunds has the msrp only.

    Thanks for your help.
  • 8u6hfd8u6hfd Posts: 1,391
    The Camry V6 is not VVT-i, nor is the Camry 4 cylinder.

    But, the ES300, Avalon, RX300, & Sienna do have VVT-i though (Sienna for 2001).

    One thing with VVT-i is making sure the oil is clean. Many VVT-i problems are sourced from the VVT-i oil strainer/valve.
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    We drove our 2003 Corolla LE automatic home yesterday - US $15671 plus taxes/lic in Sacramento, CA for a car with the carpet mats and cruise control. Have only about 50 miles on it so far, but all appears to be well except the same glove box door problem that showed up in our LE rental. This was easily remedied with some shimming, but the problem appears to be a rare actual design failure - the screw that holds the latch mechanism is too long, so that even when fully tight it allows some play. This small glitch aside, the car so far is full of pleasant surprises...amazing amount of trunk for this size car, good room inside, lots of thoughtful touches, and a tight but compliant ride.

    On the topic of ride, beware: tire pressures are critical. Don't set them over 30 psi [the recommended pressure] or be prepared for a rocky feel. These size tires [ 195/65x15 ] were used for years by Mercedes to hold up 3600 lbs of car; in this application, they are only holding up 2600 lbs, and the fact is, at 30 psi, the tires [even the fronts] are so understressed that the car feels a lot better at 28 psi than 30. I know Toyota [and everyone else] is paranoid about underinflation since the Explorer business, but the fact is, MB was recommending pressures in the high 20s when this size tire was on the previous gen E-Class. Anyway, don't overinflate - it's useless and kills an otherwise fine ride.

    I'll repeat that this car reminds me of nothing less than our '94 C-Class, except it has more room in both the cabin and trunk. No comparison of safety features, of course, but the new Corolla seems like a real value. I'll report back as time and miles accumulate.
  • jeproxjeprox Posts: 466
    the new 2002 camry 4 cylinder have vvt-i. anything before 2002 model dont have vvt-i (v6 & 4cyl.) first few yrs of avalon dont have vvt-i, just the later ones have them
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    ...have nothing to do with the problems associated with oil gelling. Change the oil at six month intervals, and use synthetic if you're worried. And check the oil regularly - I wonder how many of these people with oil-related engine failures ever actually pulled out the dipstick to see what was circulating in the crankcase....the new-gen aluminum engine that was introduced in the Corolla in '98, and updated for this year, is extremely clean-burning and very easy on oil.

    In any case, the engines in the Corolla have never been implicated in any significant numbers in the oil-related problems that have received so much publicity....
  • mbnut1mbnut1 Posts: 403
    Congratulations on your new purchase. Comparing it to your C-Class is high praise indeed. I strikes me as wild that you can buy a high quality car like the Corrola that is bigger than the new C-class but at essentially half the cost. We will be looking forward to your future reports. I'm going to try another test drive in one again and see if I can be won over as well. I definitely like that look and feel of the car.
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    I am not suggesting that anyone who can afford the over 30K price of a new C wouldn't be happy...there are obviously issues of refinement, safety and crashworthiness that come into play. What I am saying is that I think the new Corolla raises the bar in this class in a really significant way, that so far seems to have sneaked under the radar of most of the press and public. This is partly because the Matrix is getting all of the buzz and most of the marketing dollars, and partly because cars of this class get very little respect in this country.

    If you slapped a three-pointed star on the hood, everyone would be falling over themselves to test the car...as it is, only the repeat Toyota buyers and the occasional adventuresome enthusiast [like me, I guess] will ever find out what's going on here.

    I'd like to see them make ABS and side bags standard in the LE [and raise the price appropriately]; we wanted both, but cars being built this way, without a bunch of other, useless options, are impossible to find. In any case, I am impressed with what there is at the price on the table...
  • stragerstrager Posts: 308
    I completely agree about Toyota packing the Corolla(even the Matrix) with useless options like expensive alloy wheels and sunroofs, BUT not including side airbags and ABS. Safety should not be an option with a premium brand like Toyota, IMO. The "affordable" Matrix XR is $17.5K MRSP, but after Toyota is done with adding some useless options, the price jumps to about $19.2. No side airbags though.

    Incidentally, my only concern(as a Honda owner) about the new Corolla is the dreaded "numb" feeling on center for the steering. I haven't driven one though, what is your opinion about the steering feel?
  • slbond1slbond1 Posts: 2
    Took a test drive this afternoon on a 2003 LE. Noticed the rear drivers side window had a pretty significant wind noise near the outside door handle. Has anyone who recently test drove or purchase this vehicle had a similar observation?
    With the above exception, the car looks and rides great, now I'm just looking for a 5 speed.
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    I find nothing objectionable about steering feel, and we spent last night on a winding country road to and from a dinner party with some friends who are well off the beaten path. However, there is nothing objective about this kind of observation, and I would hesitate to say the car is as sensitive as the Civic...but I'm not sure that's a bad thing. Again, I enjoyed driving the car on the back roads - it was certainly more fun than our Accord on the same route.

    Overall noise levels are improved over both the old car and in comparison to anything else in the class - certainly neither our rental nor our new car has any noise issues beyond the engine roar under hard acceleration that has been discussed before.

    To me, the car feels nimble and tossable - it's not a BMW, of course, but that's another discussion. High winds, and we had some yesterday, will move it around more than our Accord, but then it weighs 700 lbs less. I continue to be happy with our decision, but I emphasize again after last night's outing over some very nasty pavement that you do not want to inflate the tires over the recommended 30psi - I intend to experiment with something slightly lighter, like 28 psi. The relatively large tires they chose for this car pay dividends, but the ride deteriorates rapidly if there is too much air in there.

    Finally, the glovebox fix worked nicely and there are no new interior noise issues so far [this is a NUMMI car].... And boy, the new trunk is a revelation to anyone coming from the old car [or just about anything else in the class] - it is very nearly as big as the Accord's - another pleasant surprise.
  • mbnut1mbnut1 Posts: 403
    John,

    I also found the new Corolla to strike a good balance between ride and handling. On my test drive I drove over windy roads and found it to provide responsive and very secure handling at speeds beyond the posted limits. I didn't notice any harshness in the ride as well They must have had the tires inflated correctly on the test car. I think they got the chassis right on this one.
  • somedudesomedude Posts: 3
    After the hype the new Corolla received from the automotive press, I traded in my trusty 2001 Corolla LE and got the 2003 model. The only advantages the new model has over the old one that I can see are an improved interior and slightly more equipment for slightly less money. On the other hand, the car developed squeaks and rattles with 800 miles on the odo that my old Corolla didn't develop in 35,000 miles, possibly indicating less quality control. Also, when I bought the car I wasn't crazy about its looks, but I thought it would grow on me. It didn't! In fact, I like the old car's looks better (mine was dark blue + alloys). Fuel consumption also seems to be about 10% higher than my old car and engine/road noise entering the cabinet is much more noticeable, at any engine speed.

    All in all, a mild disappointment. So, if your previous generation Corolla is still giving you a good service, don't do my mistake and trade it in for the new one thinking you'd be getting a vastly superior car. It isn't! Actually, I wish I kept my 2001 Corolla...
  • johnclineiijohnclineii Posts: 2,287
    Wow! I'm sorry this happened to you, but thanks for sharing this with all of us! Nothing like a comparison by one who knows!

    Usually it is a good idea to wait a while after a new design is introduced, at least with the American brands. Harder to do than say, though. I know I am looking at both Vibe/Matrices and the 2003 Crown Victoria/Grand Marquis (which begins production today) to replace my current Impala LS. My momma is the one with the Corolla (in this case, Prizm) which I advised her to buy and which she loves!

    Cross shopping both a Vibe/Matrix and a CV/Grand Marquis? Yep. You may begin laughing now!
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    I looked up and down the size and price spectrum before making this decision. And I respect everyone's opinion, but mine is that the new car is a huge step forward over the previous gen Corolla. I have a lot of experience in that car, and I'll take the new one any day of the week.

    It's also true that early adapters always take risks, even with Toyota. Our car carries a serial number in the 21000 range from NUMMI, which is certainly on the early side. With some planned trips in the next 10 days, I'll have 1000 miles on our car before the end of next week. If anything changes, I'll be the first to say so.

    First fuel stop yielded 31.3 mpg with a green engine and a lot of load and speed variance to help breakin.
  • lfanlfan Posts: 61
    Yes- My '03 Corolla has also developed rattles after 1700 miles. The original ones associated with temperature changes on the dash are minor (noise level wise) and relatively intermittent. I can live with those. The new rattle, a very annoying one at that, is from the right rear headliner / top of rear windshield. I have the car into the dealer today for repair.

    No- I happened to take a '01 Corolla as my loaner car today. I have driven 60 miles and I agree with jrct9454. The '03 has superior or equal characteristics in most respects (NVH, ride, handling, power, comfort/convenience, romminess).

    As a early adapter, I can live with a few fixable niggling things and the inevitable recalls.
  • wrightgmwrightgm Posts: 9
    Rides like a dream so far (2 days). No squeeks, rattles, or wind noise to speak of. One thing I really like (not sure if older models had it or not) is the variable height for the driver's seat. This makes it very adaptable to different size drivers. Mine was built in Canada so I am not sure if there is a different quality control standard here or not but so far so good.
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    ...in SF with my wife's mom, who has a pre-gen '98 Corolla LE equipped identically to our new '03. I have driven hers extensively in the past, and did so this time with a direct comparison in mind [ her car, 4 years old last month, has less than 14k miles on it, and is for all practical purposes brand new ]. In every respect but one, the new car is clearly equal to or usually better than the old one. The one exception is engine noise on acceleration, mentioned here multiple times. The new car is quieter on the freeway at cruise, and the ride quality of the new car is a noticeable improvement. I think the overall progress between the two cars is obvious and significant.

    Second fillup resulted in 32 mpg, with a lot of high-speed freeway running with AC on, and much variation in speeds to help breakin. It loves to cruise at 3000 rpm, which is just short of 80 mph...I have to work consciously to keep moving the speeds around during this first 1000 miles. So far, so good...
  • lfanlfan Posts: 61
    Hope this helps anyone with a similar problem on their '03.

    My dealer's service department was able to fix the squeaky rear windshield problem after two days. Up until an hour before my pickup on Tuesday, they could not diagnose and repaired the problem though they can hear the squeak. Then they had a brilliant idea to call Toyota "Tech-Line" to see if they can offer any solutions. The Tech-line immediately identified a solution for the squeak as it has been a known problem on some '03s. Apparently some sort of pins/clips at the top of the rear windshield were not removed, as required, at the factory during assembly. I am a happy camper again now that this snafu was fixed without tearing out the windshield or headliner.
  • sandman46sandman46 Posts: 1,798
    At 57k miles, my mechanic recommended this service. Had it done and the car seems to drive better, more pickup. He tried to explain what he did but my mind is like swiss cheese lately. Can anyone explain it to me again, s-l-o-w-l-y. And was this service really necessary or was I the one who was cleaned out?
    Thanks in advance from my Corolla family.
    Sandman
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