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2009 Toyota Corolla

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Comments

  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    All that you noted above is testament to great marketing. I've said here before that IMO Toyota's real strength is marketing. It's first and foremost a manufacturing company ( in general ) that nearly every other manufacturer would like to emulate. But IMO its real strength is marketing, which it does far better than any other vehicle maker. Essentially it sells the hell out of vanilla and it confounds the purists and annoys the engineering specialists ( Honda, BMW, VW ). These vehicles just shouldn't sell as well as they do.

    As shown by Lexus, the RAV, the RX300, the Prius, HSD, GR engines, Tacoma, HiLux and Tundra when it chooses it can be cutting edge but usually it chooses not to be. Note though that a lot of those cutting edge successes are the result of ultra-sharp marketing and manufacturing.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    Again it's a simple business decision. There is a price for each trim level. Exceed that price and you risk being ignored. This is not a luxo-segment where a few thousand +/- are inconsequential. This econo-segment values every $500 of pricing differential.

    You are right that every vehicle could be as nice as an Avalon or Lexus but at what cost?

    You rest all your arguments on 'See what Hyundai/Kia can do for much much less money.' You are right...for the moment.

    But as you've seen I'm sure Hyundai is just about fed up with the US market and what they have to do to buy into it. The Sonata is no longer at any discount to the Camry, it's actually more expensive. Now there's a tough sale.

    Then there's this..pretty amazing and funny too ( in a vicious way admittedly ).
    From Business Week online...
    My Way or the Highway at Hyundai

    "It marked the fourth shakeup in three years for Kia's American operation. The U.S. unit of Hyundai, meanwhile, has churned through four top executives in five years. Many of the departures have come at awkward times. Hunt and Beavis got the news at the airport as they were about to fly from Irvine to an annual dealer meeting in San Francisco. According to several sources, Hunt's predecessor, Peter Butterfield, was dismissed during a dinner meeting with dealers at the Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas—between the entrée and dessert. The companies declined to comment on any of these executive departures. "

    [ Mr Butterfield, excellent choice for dinner. You're fired. Now what's for dessert. ]

    The Elantra and the Sonata are very good cars, probably near or at the top of each segment but they don't sell anywhere near as well as they should even with massive discounts 'til now. Make each of them priced as they should from a content pov and they may tank even further. OTOH the stigma of being 'discounted' and 'second-rate' might disappear with more correctly priced trims and sales might grow. We shall see.

    In general this segment is going to be redhot in the coming years and all producers should be able to sell out as fuel heads toward $10 a gallon. I'm in the middle of a two step project to compare the 2003 vs 2007 sales of all the major makers to see how the public has reacted to fuel increases.
    Step 1 is done in that the 6 major BOF makers ( GM/F/C/T/N/I ) have collectively lost 1 million annual buyers.
    Where did these 1 million buyers go? To more efficient vehicles certainly but which ones?
    Step 2 which models have benefitted the most by this seachange in the US public's buying trend?
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,732
    You are right that every vehicle could be as nice as an Avalon or Lexus but at what cost?

    That's not what I said. I said that Toyota has the ability to make a car with a nice interior, for example the Avalon. I don't think that every car has to have an interior as nice as an Avalon or Lexus, and certainly not cars in this class. But how about wanting the interior of the 2009 Corolla to be as nice as others in this class, e.g. Civic, Elantra, Impreza, Jetta/Rabbit, Mazda3, Spectra. Is that asking too much? By your reckoning, I guess it is.

    The Sonata is no longer at any discount to the Camry, it's actually more expensive.

    That is absolutely false and you know it, or at least you should know it, since you are in the car sales business. Do you give these kinds of false statements to your customers, too? Maybe you should take a few minutes and do a little research, maybe right here at Edmunds.com, and compare the MSRPs of the 2009 Camry and Sonata. To be fair, you might want to add the options to the Camry that make it more comparable to the Sonata (e.g., VSC across the board, plus rear spoiler on SE, plus leather on the XLE). But try it both ways, with and without add-ons on the Camry, and let us know what you find out.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    if we could talk about the new Corolla here and take these other conversations to more appropriate discussions...
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    That's not what I said. I said that Toyota has the ability to make a car with a nice interior, for example the Avalon.

    Yes of course they have the ability but at what cost? Again it's a matter of cost and price. They obviously chose one specific route.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,692
    that people will notice, and cost-cutting they won't. When Toyota is saving $50 per car by doing the kind people DO notice, the obvious question becomes, why don't they go that last $50?

    There will be rebates on the '09 by summer, and they will total a whole lot more than that $50.

    The domestics have been guilty of cheapo interiors for a long time, and have deserved the criticism they received for it. Toyota has not yet gotten down to the level of GM ten years ago, but GM is presently headed up, while Toyota still seems to be headed down. They seem to be passing each other as we speak.

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

  • cubssoxscubssoxs Posts: 139
    Hey, is it worth it to spend the extra money and get the xrs model. I mean what is the difference between the two models. I know u get the 17 inch tires and the more powerful 2.4L engine. Has anyone test drove the xrs model? How does it feel compared to the S model?
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,732
    Personally, I'd go for a Camry (with the same powertrain as the XRS) vs. an XRS, talking only of Toyotas here. The price would probably not be much different, and the Camry is a lot more car for the money--and the fuel economy is not much worse.
  • jilliewjilliew Posts: 48
    Driver front airbag and front passenger airbag with Advanced Airbag System standard

    Driver and front passenger front seat-mounted side airbags and front and rear side curtain airbags standard

    Active headrests

    Maybe they were counting the active headrests. There's a lot of airbags there. ;)
  • irismgirismg Posts: 345
    An $18,000 car had better have POWER windows, but that's MY opinion. I hate the pricing on the new Corolla.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    Personally, I'd go for a Camry (with the same powertrain as the XRS) vs. an XRS, talking only of Toyotas here. The price would probably not be much different, and the Camry is a lot more car for the money--and the fuel economy is not much worse.

    I'm going to guess that the XRS will be a small volume primarily intended for those that really want the XRS. For example at some time in the future I could see maybe 60 Camry's in stock, +100 enroute, along with two XRS's.

    Features for $$
    Corolla XRS, cloth, JBL+BT+XM, SR, VSC, AW = $23500
    Camry LE, cloth, JBL+BT ( XM extra ), SR, VSC, AW = $25500

    Your statement above probably makes Toyota Marketing smile. The whole idea is one supports the other. The Corolla is not the equal to the Camry and never has been. It's always been the good soldier that watches the Camry's back. Both vehicles have a lot of features but $2000 is $2000. That of itself may appeal to some buyers. The smaller size may as well. The lighter weight may make the XRS more appealing to some than the heavier, larger LE. OTOH the Camry is the primary focus of Toyota in NA. Mission accomplished. ;)
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,732
    When I speak of price, I am speaking of the price to be paid, not the list price.

    For example, in my town I see ads every weekend for 2008 Camry LE and 2008 Corolla LE leases--for exactly the same terms. Right now, discounts/rebates on the Camry are more than they are for the 2009 Corolla. So I think the out-the-door price of a Camry vs. a Corolla XLE would be a lot closer than $2000 apart.

    And I was trying to be nice and restrict my response to alternative Toyotas, instead of the Corolla XRS. We all know there's other alternatives out there. (I wonder if that statement will make Toyota Marketing smile too?)
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    Welcome to 2008 / 09. Some of the other models listed are even more basic, the DX Civic has no AC at all - unless you pay for it. Most of the others listed also don't have ABS or Side / Curtain airbags - unless you pay for it. And none except the Civic gets within 8-10% of the fuel economy of the Corolla.

    There is always the very nicely equipped Yaris and others like it which are well under $16000.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    Different markets again.

    You may be seeing the last of the 2008 blowouts being advertised but our 2008's have been gone since President's Day W/E. All we have are 2009's, none of which have any rebates.

    The MSRP to MSRP comparo is valid because as you say the transaction price is what really matters and for the 09s the customer will have to same opportunity to beat down the price. For a buyer who wants all the features listed but doesn't want to pay $25500 or even $23500 for a Camry there is always the XRS Corolla @ $23000. OTOH for a buyer who loves the features, where $23500- $24500 is a fair range but he/she really needs the larger vehicle there's always the Camry. This gives a $4000 window of opportunity for buyers to get the options that they want.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,732
    And none except the Civic gets within 8-10% of the fuel economy of the Corolla.

    This is the 2nd time you've made this mis-statement. Other compacts that have a FE difference of less than 8% compared to the 2009 Corolla (based on EPA combined FE numbers) are Elantra, Focus, and Sentra (all with base engines and automatics or CVT). There may be others, but I didn't check all of them.

    (P.S. I couldn't find the EPA FE numbers for the 2009 Corolla 1.8L AT at fueleconomy.gov and couldn't find its EPA combined FE number anywhere, so I used 30 mpg, based on the 2008 Corolla having EPA numbers of 26/35 and 29 combined vs. the 2009's numbers of 27/35).
  • thaipthaip Posts: 32
    The Corolla LE costs $17100 + Tax, and it has power windows, locks, vsc, alloys, cruise, and even keyless entry. I just picked up my LE on Sunday. I agreed that its leg rooms in the back is a little tight, and the interior looks a little cheap. However, it is a good, in fact, excellent car for comuting to work! The power is adequate. I have no problem to get out or in of an exit. In fact, I feel it is even more powerful then the Camry Hybrid when I step on the gas pedal. The camry hybrid has 2.4 litter with believed to be 148 horses plus the electric motor about another 25 horses.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,692
    2009: EPA is 27/35 for Corolla 1.8 auto, 26/35 for 1.8 manual, and 21/29 for the 2.4L.

    One wonders why anyone would pick the Corolla XRS over the Mazda3s or the Civic SI for the same money...in fact, depending on rebates and such, the Corolla might actually cost MORE than those two until Mazda revises the 3.

    However if what you want is the big-engined version of a quiet cruiser, the Corolla XRS might be just the ticket. There will be a few buyers like that, I know, but I can understand why Toyota is limiting production to 2% of the total.

    The dealer that I first spoke to about their XRS has yet to receive a second one since they sold the one they had. That's at least two weeks ago.

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

  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,732
    Thanks, I was using the 1.8L AT numbers since they are the best case for the 2009 Corolla, but what is weird is that I can't find the combined EPA FE number anyplace. So I used 30, which I thought was pretty close given the 2008 Corolla AT has a 29 combined number with 26/35 for city/highway.

    However if what you want is the big-engined version of a quiet cruiser, the Corolla XRS might be just the ticket.

    Well... call me weird but since I know where I can get a car that has a lot more power, better fuel economy, much larger and classier interior, a smooth and quiet ride, all at a lower price than the XRS, I won't be going to the box office for that XRS ticket anytime soon. ;) But I can see why Toyota is limiting the XRS to about 2% of the total. Who is going to buy one? Someone who wants a compact-sized car that costs as much or more than some mid-sized cars that trump it in performance, equal or beat it in FE, and blow it away on comfort? I guess there are some people out there like that. Just not very many, by Toyota's admission.
  • However if what you want is the big-engined version of a quiet cruiser, the Corolla XRS might be just the ticket.

    I've actually been watching for previous generation XRS models with the 6-speed and always wondered if they wouldn't give the economy of the base engine if driven conservatively... most of the time.

    Anyway, I'm getting an '09 S model. I'd be all over the XRS, except for gas prices. I love sleepers. The XRS badging gives it away, but an LE or an XLE with the 2.4 and a stick would be my ultimate choice. Eliminating fuel economy from the decision tree, I'd take the larger engine option on any car every time.

    But, I'm shooting for 40 MPG (despite the EPA's new numbers). I'll actually be a bit surprised if the XRS doesn't have real world economy closer to 35 MPG. My old '93 Camry's 2.2 with an AT still cranks out 31+ MPG. I'd think the XRS with a stick and the slightly larger 2.4 would do at least as well.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    OK to be precise... Of the vehicles listed none except the Civic come within 7.4% City and 5.4% Highway, with some of them well over 10% worse in fuel economy.

    Corolla.... 27 C / 35 H .... Segment leader in fuel economy
    Civic....... 25 / 36 .... - 7.4% / + 2.9% than the Corolla
    Sentra.... 25 / 33 .... - 7.4% / - 5.7% than the Corolla
    Maz3..... 23 / 31 .... -14.8% / -11.4% than the Corolla
    Elantra... 25 / 33 .... - 7.4% / - 5.7% than the Corolla
    Focus.... 24 / 33 .... -11.1% / - 5.7% than the Corolla
    Cobalt.... 22 / 31 ..... -18.5% / -11.4 % than the Corolla
  • jaxs1jaxs1 Posts: 2,697
    The car is driven conservatively during the EPA tests and it doesn't get the same EPA ratings.
    There is no reason for the EPA tests to have been biased against the XRS when it was tested exactly the same as the 1.8s were.
  • The car is driven conservatively during the EPA tests and it doesn't get the same EPA ratings.
    There is no reason for the EPA tests to have been biased against the XRS when it was tested exactly the same as the 1.8s were.


    I wasn't saying that the EPA tests are biased against the XRS or that there was any difference in how the two engines were tested.

    What I was saying was that the EPA's testing system changed for the 2008 model year. The EPA estimates for the '08 Corolla are lower than they were for the '07 model and it's exactly the same engine.

    I would personally expect to beat the EPA estimates obtained with the new method with either engine. I hope to see 40 MPG on highway runs in my '09 Corolla with the 1.8. I'm guessing that 35 MPG isn't out of the question with the 2.4 if one isn't punchy with the right foot. :)
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,692
    "Well... call me weird but since I know where I can get a car that has a lot more power, better fuel economy, much larger and classier interior, a smooth and quiet ride, all at a lower price than the XRS, I won't be going to the box office for that XRS ticket anytime soon"

    Backy, I suspect you are referring to the Sonata, but then you are talking about a bigger clumsier car with another 300 pounds on it, just like the Camry LE is. The people I am referring to, the folks who want the big-engined version of the Corolla, PREFER either the smaller size or the lower weight of the Corolla with that big engine.

    Obviously, if they also want superlative handling and responsive steering, not to mention a nicer interior, they have the Mazda3s to turn to....or the Civic SI....or heck the GTI at this pricetag.

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

  • mackabeemackabee Posts: 4,709
    The engine in the 09 is NOT the same as the one in the 08. EPA testing is now more real world driving than before. There's nothing conservative about it.
    Mack
  • The engine in the 09 is NOT the same as the one in the 08. EPA testing is now more real world driving than before. There's nothing conservative about it.

    I know the 09 engine isn't the same. I know the EPA testing has changed and that it's generally lowered the reported averages of everything. On an anecdotal basis, I've seen reports that real world averages are probably going to be better than the "new" EPA estimates. So, I still expect fuel economy of the '09 1.8 to be comparable to the fuel economy of the previous generation 1.8 in the Corolla.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,732
    Yes, there are many excellent alternatives to the XRS at its price levels. Some are about the same size/weight as the XRS, some are larger.

    But since I haven't driven the Sonata SE yet or the XRS for that matter, I hesitate to say one is "clumsier" than the other.

    And the GTI is not a lightweight car...
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,732
    Corolla.... 27 C / 35 H .... Segment leader in fuel economy

    Actually, it looks like the Corolla is tied for segment leadership in FE with the Versa CVT (both at 27 mpg), and the Civic is the segment leader in highway FE (36 mpg vs. 25 for Corolla). Still, fuel economy is perhaps the Corolla 1.8's biggest plus--along with the quiet interior and big trunk for this class.
  • roxy11roxy11 Posts: 27
    versa w/cvt epa is 27/33
    corolla epa is 27/35
    civic at epa is 25/36

    corolla is tied on city, better on highway than versa, so not really a tie overall.
    corolla is 2 mpg better than civic in city, 1 less on highway, so a tie at best or maybe edge to corolla.

    of course theres epa and there is real world. the nissan versa is struggling in real world mpg, much like the dodge caliber(no surprise there).

    i can honestly say, of any corolla owner i know personally(total of 6 people-no not a huge sample) none of them fails to achieve the OLD epa estimates of 30/38 auto (4 of them) and 32/41 w/the manual.(2 people). this doesnt include myself. i generally got 38-42 with 65-75% hwy driving with an 05 manual.

    maybe its all in my head, but many honda and toyota drivers have always seemed to exceed the old epa numbers, so for us the new epa numbers are laughable. im going to be patient on the 09 corolla though, as it is heavier and the engine is a bit different. i will not purchase one until i see a good sampling of real word numbers, particularly with the manual.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,732
    Right, I meant to say "city" wrt the Versa being tied with the Corolla. Thanks for the catch.
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