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2009 Toyota Corolla



  • mcmanusmcmanus Posts: 121
    I had a couple of minutes to kill this morning and stopped by my Toyota/Scion/Lexus dealer to see if they had an xB in and they had three, one in the showroom!

    It pushed a lot of my buttons: chair-like seating, proven engine in a nicely laid out compartment (are you listening Honda?), very reasonable fuel economy to be expected, gobs of room, small footprint, good road clearance (Michigan winters), solid build, everything fit nicely together, and it fit me too.

    Mechanically this is very close to a Camry or RAV-4 (4A vs 5A), but in nearly all other regards it has more of what I want for about $4000 less. Content value is extremely high. Think of it as a micro-van. In this price range, the xB is a man amongst boys.

    The Corolla had better be really, really nice if it hopes to compete. We still don't know much about the real world fuel economy, handling, etc., of xB or Corolla, but at its expected price the Corolla better be something very special indeed.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    There are MANY words I leave out when responding to your posts. That is because I would like to continue contributing to Town Hall.
  • jaxs1jaxs1 Posts: 2,697
    The Corolla does not compete withe new xB. The xB does not have fuel economy as a priority with the Camry engine and 4-speed automatic transmission. You will be lucky to every get past 30 MPG in the new xB except on extended highway trips.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    ONe of the huge problems in reselling used Corolla's ( and Civics and Accords for that matter ) is that they cannot be bought or traded inexpensiviely enough to allow them to be sold attractively - and still generate a 'reasonable' return.

    We nearly always send our Accord/civic trades out to auction immediately because if the owner 'demands' fair value of say $14000 on his 3 y.o. Accord LX 4c there is no way we can fix it up for resale and resell it. Would you pay $16000 for a 3 y.o. 30000 mi 4c LX? Better to send it right off to auction and turn it into cash.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    To be balanced, while I do respect your various opinions over several different subject, this Gen Corolla is worlds better than the last two.

    When it came out on Super Bowl Moday of 2002 it was essentially a mini Camry. It is nearly as big as my 1989 Camry ( slightly narrower ) with more power and more features. The styling seemed to be a ripoff of the current Jetta at that time but it was/is very popular.

    The seating to is awkward for me but it's heads and shoulders above the previous Gens where 'butt scraping on pavement' might have been a good description.

    At the time the standard 1.8L was the leader in the class in terms of power well in excess of the standard engine on the Civic. was a 'Corolla'. As jacksan mentioned there seems to be no obvious explanation for this sales phenomenon except IMHO - 'value'. A buyer feels comfortable plunking down $15,000-$16,000 or signing up for 5 yrs at $300 or less and never having to worry about transportation again.

    An interesting note. In the past recent periods the Civic was the sales leader in this segment...significantly. When we went to the launch training on this Gen Corolla in early 2002 they told us that the product planners 'promised' Toyota's upper management that this Corolla would take the lead away from the Civic. Whatever it is that they know they know it very well.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    I tested the new xB shsortly after it's arrival and I was impressed as well. It's not as quirky as the original which is a negative for some ( many ) but it is much more vehicle than the first, even at $17K+.

    It also is a much nicer riding vehicle than the current Corolla with a much nicer interior and more comfortable seating. I think it's going to be HUGE success in this the Camry wagon. The Highlander abdicated that in favor of going bigger IMO. But for the many who don't need a $29000 near-luxo-ride ( the Highlander is a Lexus after all ) the xB offers everything one might need in a wagon and at a $5000 discount!! The xB is an LE Camry wagon which should sell for about $23000 with all the safety features standard but it sells for $17500...and it's a blast to drive as a 5 spd manual.

    The Corolla is better basic transportation...for a traditional sedan buyer.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    When the current Corolla debuted in 2002, it was a very nice small car, with a huge flaw: the driving position. That flaw has been mentioned in every review I've read on the car. That was over five years ago. Toyota did nothing to fix it. I actually preferred the prior Corolla, in every way but rear seat room. Maybe for 2009 Toyota will fix it. They will have had six years to do so.

    The 1.8L engine was hardly leading in power--e.g. the Elantra of the time had 135 horses. The Corolla was more powerful than the base Civic, but that car was low power (115 hp) for the class.

    For the time, the car was well-built and had a nicely-finished interior. And the fuel economy was, and is, excellent for the class, a by-product of the car's low weight and efficient engine.

    But now it's mid-2007, and the Corolla is outclassed by nearly every other car in its segment. Even when it debuted, it was not the top of the class. The fact it sells so well is a testament to the reputation of the Corolla as a reliable economy car, and those two words--reliable and economy--are very important to small car buyers. And also probably to the fact that, as drfill has said, many buyers don't bother to compare other makes, just go into the Toyota dealer and buy a Toyota. If that makes people feel better to spend their money that way, more power to them.

    You know, taking the sales lead from the Civic doesn't mean much given how Toyota did it--with more dealers, large incentives, and large fleet sales. Sure, Toyota management can say, "We outsold the Civic!", but consider how they did it. When Hyundai sold over 20,000 Sonatas in December 2005, all we heard was "For shame! Just a lot of fleet sales and big incentives!" Which was true. What a double standard.
  • drfilldrfill Posts: 2,484
    You know, taking the sales lead from the Civic doesn't mean much given how Toyota did it--with more dealers, large incentives, and large fleet sales. Sure, Toyota management can say, "We outsold the Civic!", but consider how they did it. When Hyundai sold over 20,000 Sonatas in December 2005, all we heard was "For shame! Just a lot of fleet sales and big incentives!" Which was true. What a double standard.

    I don't know where your imaginary fleet sales are coming from, but Toyota stays below 10% on fleet, so if Corolla sold 10% fleet last month, it STILL would've outsold Civic's Record month, and Elantra's Year-To-Date! :blush:

    If Hyundai didn't put so much money into crappy commercials, maybe they'd have more dealers? :surprise:

    Is $1000 a large incentive? Oddly enough, it matches the legendary Elantra's $1000 incentive.

    Toyota averages about $1200 in incentives, about one-third the domestics, and easily leads the US in sales per dealers, so you'll need a new straw to grasp. ;)

  • mcmanusmcmanus Posts: 121
    You're right, xB doesn't compete with Corolla, it stomps it. You've really got to take a look at the new xB.

    If you stay in the under $20,000 USD realm of Toyota cars the xB wins. BTW 90% of my driving is rural/highway.

    If you want to match fuel economy of the Corolla, just wait for the xD. It might trade 1 - 2 mpg for hatchback utility, but do it for thousands less.

    I would have bought a Corolla back in early 02, but for the 3 speed automatic. In comparison debating 4A vs 5A is almost a joke.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    Take 10% off the Corolla's sales, for fleet. Consider the 20% more dealers. Should also consider relative size of stores, but that's hard to do. What you are left with is that the Civic outsells the Corolla handily on a per-store, retail basis.

    It will be interesting to see how the 2009 Corolla sells if incentives are cut/dropped. It will then be pretty equal in price to Civic, Sentra, Mazda3, and Rabbit, and have a large price disparity compared to Elantra, Spectra, and Lancer.

    (BTW, I think it's odd that you beat up Hyundai for having fewer dealers than Toyota, when Toyota had a 30-year head start in the U.S. Also that you think it's OK for Toyota to be at parity with Hyundai in incentives. What does that say about the desirability of Toyota's cars vs. Hyundai's?)
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 11,025
    I don't see "Toyota vs Hyundai" anywhere in the discussion title. We all know how each of you feel, and neither one is suddenly going to be dazzled by the other's irrefutable logic and change his mind. Let's move on.


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  • eldainoeldaino Posts: 1,618
    Log on to price a Civic LX then log onto and price a Corolla S

    regardless of price, you should be comparing an civic ex to a corolla s, as those are the top lines right now. Yeah the corolla is cheaper, but its should be.

    The Civic has 140 hp and the Corolla has 128 hp a difference of 12 hp. They are both rated at 40+ MPG highway and 30+ MPG City. I don't think people buy either of these vehicles to tow anything with. So not sure what the difference in lack of power would be.

    to echo what backy said, it just makes sense, same size engine in a heavier chassis that gets almost EXACTLY the same mpg (despite the weight disadvantage) with more hp. Why NOT is the question. When is 10% more power with the same economy suddenly a moot point?

    and last but not least, the thing that seperates honda guys from toyota guys: a lean towards performance.

    The corolla does sell in oodles...but does that make it better? you know how many crappy movies make a ton of money and how many lesser known ones that are great make nothing? same principle applies.

    Most people shopping the corolla have no regard for sporting character. (now you know why the xrs died so quickly. long gone are the days of the revered corolla gt-s)

    cheap, good mpg and reliability. and very versatile due to its blandness.

    the civic has the economy and reliability down, but is just to darn stylish for most people and not exaclty cheap. That answers that question.

    with regards to performance and how it determines if you are a honda or toyota guy , just read this:

    Poor handling compared to the Civic
    Not sure what you based this on either. They are rated about the same in most categories.
    Both have Rack and Pinion steering, Disc brakes, Curb Weight (lbs.) Civic 2804 - Corolla 2615, Wheelbase (in.) Civic 106.3 - Corolla 102.4, Length (in.) Civic 176.7 - Corolla 178.3, Width (in.) Civic 69.0 - Corolla 66.9, Height (in.) Civic 56.5 - Corolla 58.5, Headroom (Front, in.) Civic 38.1 - Corolla 39.3, Headroom (Rear, in.) Civic 36.7 - Corolla 37.1. Thanks for the comparo of interior dimensions. But thats not supporting the FACT that the corolla is the definte lesser handler of the two. Look at slalom times, skid pad numbers etc to find out about that.

    But it probably doesn't matter huh? that kind of stuff is irrelevant to a corolla buyer. And that is totally fine...but it DOES prove how performance not only is not a priority to corolla buyers, but a foreign thing altogether. :blush:
  • eldainoeldaino Posts: 1,618
    Nicer plood maybe?

    ha ha! i need that one backster!

    all joking aside, i'd like to check out the new corolla, just for kicks. I don't think it will blow the competition out of the water, but it will be competative.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,726
    "long gone are the days of the revered corolla gt-s"

    Oh AE86, where have ye gone?? And where is the Toyota that made THAT little gem? :-(

    2014 Mini Cooper (stick shift of course), 2016 Camry hybrid, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (keeping the stick alive)

  • mcmanusmcmanus Posts: 121
    How fast a car accelerates to merge on the freeway or allows for passing on 2-lane roads are IME the real test of power. The horsepower ratings only apply at high rpms. Low rpm torque, say 1500 - 2500 rpm, is a far better measure of useful power.

    My Mazda 626 is a dog below 4,000 rpm. With an automatic tranny good performance can only be experienced under hard/extended acceleration, like freeway merging up hill. Typically the engine has barely passes 4,000 rpm by the time I've completed a pass on a 2-lane road.

    This brings to point perhaps the primary, real differences between automatic and manual transmissions, driver control of rpms. In slippery conditions low rpms help avoid loss of traction and when you want strong acceleration high rpms are needed. With small, limited power, rev happy engines the differences between transmissions become more significant.

    Unless you're a boy racer 0 - ?? mph or top speed are meaningless. So lets keep the HP discussions to something relavent by looking at something like 30 - 50 mph or 50 - 70 mph acceleration times. And lets limit our transmission discussions to cost/convenience/performance/relability issues.
  • eldainoeldaino Posts: 1,618
    actually, a long as you can get your car into higher rpms, which is totally possible in the civic, you're good; you dont need a manual tranny to do that. Plus, the civic makes most of its power at higher rpms anyway; 50-70 is wonderful on the civic, and much better than its 30-50 or 0-30. (real world 1 year of ownership experience speaking here.)

    i guess that most car reviewers are boy racers?...
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    Safe only with the OPTIONAL side bags and curtains (refer to the IIHS test I posted earlier for a Corolla w/o the optional side bags/curtains). Since you agree that the Corolla is safe when equipped with the optional side bags and curtains, do you have any idea why Toyota would not have made them standard by now, as they are on almost every other vehicle in their lineup? Have you had any confirmation from Toyota that SABs/SACs will be standard on the 2009 Corolla?
  • drfilldrfill Posts: 2,484
    Considering the amount of standard safety features going into the new Tundra and Camry, I'd expect 6 airbags minimum, if not 7.

    ABS will be standard, with EBD, BA also std. I would presume Trac and VSC would make a option package.

    As Toyotas are redesigned, they tend to make quantum leaps in power and equipment, if necessary.

    Safety sells, but so do Corollas. ;)

    I would be shocked if Corolla received more than 140HP. From 28/37 I'd like to see it back to 30/38.

    I don't expect a particularly stylish car. I like the current styling, but I anticipate a step back towards the Yaris.

    One benefit to that is the Yaris is smaller, but more space efficient than the Corolla, so that could be a good sign. :)

    Weight should stay below 2700 lbs. I fully expect a better power-to-weight ratio.

    Purely speculation.

  • sandman46sandman46 Posts: 1,798
    Why can't Toyota make better brakes without that mushy feeling? We've had 4 Toyota's and the brakes stunk in all of them. What gives? The Nissans and the 3s and Civic that we now own are worlds better, and only the Civic has ABS. Never could understand this and it finally drove us away from Toyota for good.
    Having rented an almost brand new '07 Corolla LE last year, I was disappointed in a car with mushy brakes and that unnatural seating position. Never could get comfortable in it. Hopefully Toyota will have done it's homework since it went back to the drawing board last year on the Corolla.
    DrFill, why are Toyota brakes so lousy still?

    The Sandman :confuse:
  • mcmanusmcmanus Posts: 121
    It's almost as if Toyota only sees the competition from within and that designing the awkwardly long reach to the steering wheel (to make it safer on frontal impacts I'm sure), dull personality, etc. encourages sales of Yaris and Camry. This can be seen from many companies when they get big enough. Look at all the versions of Coke that flood the market.

    I sure Toyota could have rolled out a tweaked version of the current Corolla at anytime to address nearly all the concerns we've listed, but total Toyota vehicle sales certainly aren't suffering. The Corolla is a team player in the overall lineup. Again as a company gets bigger there's more to lose and less to gain from taking any chances.

    As far as mushy brakes, you haven't driven my Mazda 626. :lemon:
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,907
    I think you hit it on the head; Toyota has no incentive to improve the car if it sells fine without improvements. However, I'm sure they'd rather sell just as many if not more Corollas to private parties (vs. at fleet prices), and without the large incentives they have had to put on the car in recent years. And they are smart enough to know that the Corolla has fallen behind the pack and eventually reputation and fuel economy alone won't carry it in the marketplace. Enter the all-new 2009 Corolla! We can't wait.

    P.S. If they put center-mounted gauges in it ala Yaris, I'll scream.
  • mcmanusmcmanus Posts: 121
    Hopefully the center mounted gauges are gone as they've been eliminated from the new Scions. I'm sure Toyota sells enough Corollas to produce both versions.

    I'd like to see the compact (for urban considerations), tallish (for visability, space efficiency, and ease of access) form stay. Personally the Camry is too big (reminds me of the domestics my parents still drive). And I could do without another car with a hood like Camry or Yaris (looks like an upper lip pulled over the grill). The back of the Camry looks like the car it was designed from front to back and they didn't know how to finish it. I like the design of back of the current Corolla (looks tight and efficient without being "spacy").

    It is fustrating that obvious design flaws haven't been addressed mid-cycle. But IME its primarily brand loyality (then economy and realiability) that keeps selling Corolla, certainly not features, function, design, or price (where its not competitive).
  • eldainoeldaino Posts: 1,618
    the dash on the the new xb is still center mounted. the xd's isn't, and while i do like it, is still not exactly 'traditional'.
  • raychuang00raychuang00 Posts: 541
    There's a good change it will get an all-new engine. Toyota just announced a new variable-valve timing technology called Valvematic that operates in a fashion akin to Honda's new Advanced VTEC variable-valve timing technology. They say the first engine to use Valvematic with be a 2.0-liter I-4 engine--the perfect engine for the 2009 Corolla.

    I still personally contend that when the 2009 North American market Corolla is (likely) officially unveiled at the 2007 Los Angeles International Auto Show it may sport more radical styling than people original thought, use this new 2.0-liter engine, and might even go to a 5AT transmission to further improve fuel efficiency.
  • drfilldrfill Posts: 2,484
    Could go CVT too. Or save that for a Hybrid. I don't think it will look as much like the Japanese version, but I don't expect very aggressive style.

  • mcmanusmcmanus Posts: 121
    I saw that blip on the Valvematic too and wondered what they'd put it in. But I didn't think it'd be ready for 2009. And if it has more power than a current 2.0L it might be an optional engine for the Corolla. When's the last time Corolla had engine options, like the rest of the industry?

    I'd go for smart/modern design that is space efficient before giving up room for sleekness.

    I drool with thinking of what Toyota could build and grind my teeth when I see what they offer. A smart/modern styled 2.0L 5A 4-door hatch decently (PS, PB, cruise, AC, CD) equipped with a substantial feel and good handling/brakes for under $20K would be wonderful.
  • randydriverrandydriver Posts: 262
    I really hope the new Corolla is not so ......bland looking that kept me from even considering it as something I would look at....
  • mcmanusmcmanus Posts: 121
    Look back at page 45 for the new Corolla thats selling in Japan and China.
  • jaxs1jaxs1 Posts: 2,697
    The car sin Japan and China are not usually the same cars as the US.
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