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Toyota Corolla

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  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,367
    Not to put too fine a point to it, but what in the world are you doing waiting for the little light to come on before getting some fuel? I never drive a car with less than 1/4 of a tank, unless circumstances are desperate, and then I would be looking for the first station. Helped a stranger who rang our doorbell last Sunday with an empty gas tank...I don't get it...
  • My father has a 1998 Corolla CE, my wife has a 99 Corolla CE and I drive a 2000 Corolla CE. All of them have 4-speed automatic transmiissions.

    Here's a list of the problems these cars have had:

    1. The 98 Corolla ( 38,000 miles on it so far): a)whenever the gas tank is filled with gas the car itself smells like gas for days. The dealer wasn't able to fix it. To avoid the smell my father never fills up the gas tank completely.
    b) at 30,000 miles the brake light came on and stayed on. The dealer fixed it.
    c) the car handles badly.
    d) the quality of the paint is very bad.
    e) the trunk is quite hard to close.

    2. The 99 Corolla ( 12,000 miles on it so far):

    a) the parking brake is extremely loose and it gets looser and looser as time goes by. dealer claims that it's normal
    b) the vent knob is very hard to turn. dealer claims it's normal
    c) when the car turns left or right, there's a cracking sound coming from the front right side of the car. dealer says that it's the suspension and that there's nothing he can do about it.
    d) the airbag light just started to flash. haven't taken it to the dealer yet.
    e) this one handles badly too.

    The 2000 Corolla ( 2000 miles on it so far):

    a) at 1000 miles the transmission started to make a high pitched whine. took it to the dealer who replaced 16 parts in the transmission. the car was out of service for almost 3 weeks. the day after I got the car back the high pitched whine returned. dealer advised me to drive the car for about 2000 miles and then if it still makes the sound he'll call a Toyota engineer in to take a look at the car.

    b) the transmission shifts gears badly.

    c) the driver's seat squeaks like crazy. dealer fixed it and after 2 weeks it started doing it again.

    I live in California. For a car to be declared a lemon in Calif. the dealer has to try to fix the exact same problem for at least 3 times. If he can't fix it after 3 tries then the car MAY be declared a lemon. The condition is for the problem to be serious. A squeak is not considered a major problem.

    Before buying the 99 and 2000 Corollas I used to drive a 1995 Mercury Tracer ( Ford Escort) made in Mexico. I owned this car for 5 years. I traded it in at 80000 miles. During all this time I had only one problem with it which was quickly fixed by the dealer under warranty.

    Corolla is junk.
  • aamd814aamd814 Posts: 6
    mikar70 & snflwselena:-
    This is strange..Corolla 2000 LE, being an upper trim compared to CE, does not have a low fuel indicator, whereas the latter does. I don't understand the rational for that.

    jrct9454:-
    I usually fill when tank comes down to 1/4 too. However, it does happen sometimes (unless you hire a private driver), for involuntary reasons in today's busy life, that you are at a last minute situation, and that is exactly what the low fuel indicator light is for. I think it is an important little piece of equipment to have.

    cliffy1:-
    Toyota is supposed to have tested Corolla with the tires ON, before releasing it to the consumer market. They are supposed to be the same tires that the consumer finds on the car. How come that they did not recognize the problems with drifting and handling during the testing phase? May be they did not have time or the engineers were on vacation! is it possible that they tested the car with different tires on and then replaced it with bad ones before sending it to dealers?

    fundulet:-
    the automatic transmission in my car is also very difficult to use. You have to try moving it many times before it goes into position. It never clicks into place from the first time. This is very frustrating.
    Also, acceleration is terrible. It is sluggish on a level road. Going on a simple uphill highway road can drop the speed more than half. It is so obvious as you will find yourself lagging way behind other cars suddenly. Corolla 2001 is not a spritely car at all.

    I think it is useless to take the car to the dealer, because this is a manufacture issue. The dealer cannot be blamed for the faults of the manufacturer. He can not invent new specifications and has to go by predefined rules of testing to restore a problem to normal standards, whatever that standard might be.
  • liufeiliufei Posts: 201
    My only question is since you already knows what the corolla will do in term of handling, acceleration,etc from your dad's experience with it, why the heck did you purchase two more if you are clearly unsastified with it?

    Generally, I'm happy with mine. No problem with transmission shifting gear (shift smoothly) or bad acceleration or lousy smells or squeak. I will concur that the handling is horrible and some Toyota dealer cant fix or deduce the simplest problem! (no offense to cliffy). The only unscheduled visit is for a knocking sound that dealer fail to reproduce.
    Btw, edmund here listed low fuel warning as standard on 2000 corolla. Either the dealer or edmund, one of them got to be wrong....
  • crieckecriecke Posts: 37
    "Terrible handling" "Handling is horrible"

    What aspects of the handling are you folks
    concerned about?

    Give us the details please.
  • michalwmichalw Posts: 4
    I don'[t know where the hell you guys got your cars from. I have been driving a 99 Corolla for over a year now, got 14000 miles on it and I haven't had a single problem with it. The tires are poor and the suspension is not the best one, but overall quality of the car is very good. I have a 5 speed manual and this car accelerates quicker than most of the compact cars that are on the road these days. And yes, my 99 Corolla has a low fuel warning light. I saw it go on a couple of times. Well....maybe your cars were built in California? I know that mine was built in Canada....
    Later.
  • crieckecriecke Posts: 37
    "Tires are poor" "Suspension is not the best"

    Tie these complaints down a little tighter please.

    General statements don't really let us learn
    from this conf. Thanks, Charlie
  • wenyuewenyue Posts: 558
    has the low fuel light.

    You can't see it when it's not on. But I can see it clearly when it comes on. ;) I was low on fuel when I was coming back from the airport today, and it came on as it should. If my memory doesn't fail me, the light is located above the fuel gauge. For me, it comes on when there is about 2 gallon left in the tank.

    no problem so far with my 99 Corolla LE after 1 year and 8 months of ownership. Change my oil ever 4 months. Tread still looks like it's good for at least another year (Goodyear Integrity tires). No rattle or squeaks so far (impressive in my mind). It's made in the Ontario plant (VIN number starts with "2").

    I bought the corolla because my first car was a Corolla clone and it served me so well that I never thought I would have feelings for a car. And so far, my 99 LE is living up to the heritage.

    Corolla isn't a great handling car. I think everyone knows that its no sports car. It handles good enough for everyday driving, but will disappoint you if you were looking for "sportiness". It's a mini-Camry, a small family car. It gets you to work, to the store, and serve a small family role reliably and quietly.

    There is no perfect automakers. Even Toyota, being regarded as the most reliable brand, will occationally make a lemon. It's luck I guess. What can you do? Get it fixed under the warranty, that's what they are there for. If it's truely a lemon, you can get your money back by putting the law to work.

    I don't think Corolla is a junk car. At least not when it's something like 40-80% more reliable than the average car (read it in consumer report). Unfortunatly, that number doesn't help the feelsing of the few who got the rare lemons.
  • aamd814aamd814 Posts: 6
    I am not an expert in car mechanics to be able to describe faults with handling and suspension with precise technical terms. I can only tell what I felt was going on with the car in lay terms.
    It seems that Corollas built in California are poorer quality than the ones made in Ontario.
    I am not sure what reliability means now that my new car slips each time I drive on a curve at less than normal speed. I know many people with Corolla complaining of the same problems.
    I am not sure either if this makes the car a lemon or what is the difference between a lemon or non-lemon.
    I bought my car based on consumer reports' recommendations. I think their recommendations and reports on reliability are "unreliable".
    Also I am surprised at Corolla being called a small family car that rides quietly . The single one thing that it fails to provide is a room for a family role. It can get you to close by destinations, yes, but with a lot of choppy and noisy ride.
  • liufeiliufei Posts: 201
    Corolla handling is never the best in the class, but if your car slip every time you take a turn, then either there's something with the car suspension, or the speed when you take the curve is too great.
    Also most ppl agree corolla has a nice and quite ride, so I dont see where your complaint comes from? Although the passenger space in its is definitely tight.
  • hews12hews12 Posts: 2
    Hey it's me again.

    i'm just checking in. i still havent purchased the 2001 "S" model yet, but will be in the next week. your right, the one i want is impossible to find. and i also find it very interesting that toyota wont flat bed it for me. but whatever. we bought the sienna xle last week and its running great! we have a rather large family, and there are toyotas all around. there are 3 other siennas in the family, 2 camry's (both 91 v6's), 1 96 camry v4, and 4 other corollas, all pretty new. if anyones got an opinion on toyotas its me ill tell you that.

    we also have a 99 corolla LE that was built in ontario and it runs excellent. its got 24k on it and i change the oil every 3000 or so miles. i mean, everyones right, it doesnt handle well in turns, but what do you expect when your taking turns at 40 mph? when we take the turns at normal speed, the rolla' seems to have no problem. i am very happy with this car. its my dads, and it gets him everywhere he needs to go from now. before this we had a 91 camry dx v6 that went 200,000. that was my favorite car. as for now, the corollas got speed and looks, and it really doesnt matter to me that it cant take turns like a race car and doesnt have the space for a billion people in the car. face it, its not a minivan, and you aren't jeff gordon :). i think that it performs well under the conditions that we give it. overall great car.

    Maybe the california plant has some problems....so much for made in the U.S.A......good luck, and ill report back with the 2001 "S" model purchase!
  • tomcat630tomcat630 Posts: 854
    "Maybe the california plant has some problems....so
    much for made in the U.S.A......"


    This statement has no backing or proof behind it. The NUMMI plant has had high quality rankings for years.
  • wenyuewenyue Posts: 558
    the back seat is tight. It's not a Camry. It's a rung lower and smaller. That's what I mean when I said it's fills a small family role. It's not as big as a Camry, but will do if you have a small family (or just starting one). The 2 adults sit in the front and the 2 little kids sit in the back (I totally agree that the back room is more suited for the kids than fully grown adults). That's what I consider a small family role. When the kids have grown up to be teenagers, then it's time to move up to the Camry. ;)

    The handling of the Corolla can best be described by me as "predictable, but not sporty". It does exactly what you tell it to do, and it does it. But if you are pushing the car like taking a corner at speed in excess of 35 mph, it will complain and let you know for sure. It isn't a sporty car folks, it's not designed as one. But it doesn't handle badly when you are driving it normally.

    aamd814: If your wheel slip everytime you take a turn, there is something wrong with your car. My car doesn't, I don't think most do, and it shouldn't. Get it fixed. If you are not sure, test drive another Corolla at the dealer, see if that one does that slipping thing, I doubt it.

    I too use consumer report quite a bit. I think it's right most of the time. I don't think they made a mistake about the Corolla's reliability. I haven't seen a publication that said Corolla has bad reliability yet. Every publication I look into (Consumer Report, Edmunds, Car and Driver...) always put the Corolla at the top of the reliability chart. It doesn't mean every corolla will be perfect, but it does say that the vast majority of the Corollas are quite a bit more reliable than your average car.
  • aamd814aamd814 Posts: 6
    If Corolla 2001 is designed for such a mediocre performance with a necessary near stopping speed at turns and lousy acceleration + so many other faults, what the heck is so unique about it then? why not save money, time, and lots of headache and buy a Hyundai for e.g. instead?
    Also about reliability of this car, I suggest you read Edmunds overall report once again.
  • liufeiliufei Posts: 201
    Because the reliability of Hyundai is known to be below Toyota. The new warranty should offset that, but in the same time it shows how Hyundai realizes their car has very poor reliability history/reputation that they need something to help dispel that. Its a nice car, but sadly with a bad reputation as well.
    The 2001 Toyota is not designed with mediocre performance and most owner doesnt found fault with their car. Like wenyue said, its not a sport car, it designed to be a small family car/compact car, so dont expect to take a turn going 50-60 or you WILL slip for sure! JD Power customer survey show how Corolla is among the car with the fewest complaint, so I have no idea what cause you to say that Corolla owner will save headaches by switching to another car.
    And regarding the Edmund review, heres a quote:
    Pro: Smooth ride, spunky motor, tight build quality, refined bits and pieces....the soft suspension keels over in turns, making the tires howl in pain. But the ride is smooth, the cabin is quiet at speed, side airbags are an unusual option for the class, and the parts used in the car's construction exude quality.
    So, Edmund does think Corolla is a quality car and backed by the well known Toyota reliability behind it. And they did point out the problem with the soft suspension. But its a trade-off between a smooth ride and a more of sporty handling. You should've notice this during the testdrive.

    p.s: I own an Elantra as well, so i think i can
    comment on it.
  • wenyuewenyue Posts: 558
    well said.
  • hi everyone... i just purchased a 2001 corrolla le about a month ago.. i was just curious to know if it is normal for the door ajar light to come on and ring even after you have closed all the doors? it stays on for about 30 seconds or so.. the ringing is really annoying..
  • liufeiliufei Posts: 201
    No, I doubt its normal. Bring it back to the dealer for them to take a look. It maybe the sensor timing is off or something.
  • tundradudetundradude Posts: 588
    Handling can be easily solved on any 4-door Corolla. Get some better tires! I did on my 95.

    The 2-door Corolla naturally handles better and especially good with nice speed-rated tires as on my 89.

    If you buy a new Corolla, get the dealer to change the tires before you buy it.
  • wrgrahamwrgraham Posts: 112
    Lots of handling complaints here. I am not an owner of a Corolla, but I didnt like the handling of my 86 toyota pickup when I bought it. I put better tires on it at the first chance, and that helped. Then a repair shop nearby had a special deal on Monroe gas shocks, and I got them put on the truck. That helped a whole lot, and even now,
    200K miles later, my truck handles well and has the tight feel of a new model. Although somewhat stiff, I suppose. Anyway, it makes me wonder if something like shocks could be a smart upgrade??
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