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Toyota Corolla



  • canoe2canoe2 Posts: 128
    I have been an owner of 89 Corolla. It was serving me well in last 13 yrs. It has 220K Km on but not loosing single drop of oil during 4000Km interval. It still has original radiator, CV boots, automatic transmission...
    I was looking another car for long trip drive. Toyota Camry was my candidate for next purchasing but Camry was out of my list since I saw the 2003 Corolla. I believe the style of 2003 Corolla is much better than Camry and a lot less expensive.
    Under the hood of Corolla, I was impress the arrangement of the engine (hi-tech).
    Tomorrow I will have a test drive to check out the performance of new Corolla.
  • Just test drove a 2003 corolla LE auto.
    Ride: Very smooth, very quiet
    Handling: Actually pretty good
    Engine: Super quiet at idle, good pick-up, some engine thrashiness at higher RPM's
    Transmission: (auto) Silky, seamless shifts
    Interior: Rich and inviting, quality materials throughout
    Exterior: Flawless paint, trim, etc.
    All I can say is that this car is a HUGE improvement over the 2002 corolla. I also test drove a 2002 civic EX auto which was pretty nice, drove reasonably well, typical honda quality, but I felt overall the 2003 corolla is WAY better in the way it feels and the price is better as well. For those of you who like to sit low to the ground though, the corolla may not be for you. You sit pretty high, and that might take some getting use to for some.
  • Mine was missing the floor mats as well they ordered them, they said they that it would take a week to get them.
    It has been a week today, still have not heard from them. I will give them a few more days.
    Mine has the firestone tires.
  • protegextwoprotegextwo Posts: 1,265
    Britton2, the loaded LE auto Corolla LE I tested Monday was MSRPed at $17,929. I checked my notes again and the sales manager was going to let it go for $17,350. Diehl Toyota is a very high volume dealership. They had a least ten 2003 Corolla's in stock. 3 LE's, no S's and 6 or 7 CE's. I was not seriously shopping, Monday. I guess, you can call me an inconsiderate car buyer, however; I never told either the Honda or Toyota sales guys, I was ready to buy, today. My wife is a little disgruntled with her 2000 Mazda Protege. I was just scouting for some potential replacements. I was also curious on the real world trade value of her 2000 PRO-ES. Bottom line, I have a great sales guy and friend at the Lancaster Toyota Mazda Dealership, where I purchased my last three cars. I'm pretty sure, if I was ready to pull the trigger on a Mazda Pro-5, a Toyota Matrix or a Toyota Corolla (the 3 vehicles still in the running to replace my wife's 2000 PRO-ES before it's out of warranty) I could work out a fair deal with him and my local dealership. Nonetheless, I thought it was VERRRY interesting that the Diehl Toyota Dealership in York, PA. was willing to offer $500.00 off MSRP on their slim stock of LE's? I hope that info is helpful to others, whom might check out this board. Trust me $17,350 for a fully loaded LE is a very very fair price. I repeat, I think Toyota hit a grand slam with this re-design. Before, I would purchase a Jetta or a Civic, I would strongly advice you to test drive the 2003 Corolla!

  • toguytoguy Posts: 20
    I went to test drive the 2003 Corolla today and following is how it compares to my 4 month-old (grunt!) 2002 Corolla:

    -Engine/Performance: 2002's engine is quieter which I guess is due to the fact 2003's gearing is shorter to compensate for the extra 200 pounds or so the new model has gained over the old one, which makes it rev harder at any given speed (more on that later). That's also why low rpm pick up is keener in the new Corolla, but acceleration to highway speeds and overtaking is more or less similar in both cars. I should mention that both cars had the 4-speed automatic transmission, which was equally seamless in either one.

    -Stability and handling: 2003 is so stable you'd swear it's on rails! It was a windy day in Toronto but that didn't seem to affect the (tallish) car directional stability. Handling was equally impressive and it felt safe and confidence inspiring as I was taking high speed curves during my hour-long test drive. 2002's stability isn't bad but it doesn't zero-in on the straight-ahead quite as effectively. Ditto the handling, which is less buttoned down in my 2002 corolla.

    -Ride: 2002's ride is one of its good aspects. The new Corolla retains the smooth ride but its more solid body makes pumps reverberate less throughout the car's structure (more on that later), resulting in a more comfortable ride. There were no ill effects in the cars ride (or handling) that I could notice that would be attributed to changing the rear suspension's design to torsion beam as opposed to independent Mac struts in the 2002 model.

    -Body integrity: 2003 Corolla is one of the most solid and rattle-free cars that I've driven. The car seems hewn from a pellet of steel. I know this is a tired cliché, but it actually applies in this case. The doors close with a thud that imparts a feeling you only get in cars costing 2-3 times as much. Admirable! The 2002 Corolla, while solid in its own right and compared to the likes of Civic, Protégé etc., is a notch or two below in this regard.

    Interior/Exterior: Admittedly, this is a matter of taste, but I think few would argue that the interior of the new Corolla is in a league of its own in this segment. The only other car that's as impressive -IMO- is the VW Jetta, but it costs thousands more. Interestingly, the new Corolla's exterior has about the same stance and proportions as the Jetta, which is high praise since the Jetta is probably the most elegant design in the small car segment, again IMO. I still like 2002's exterior design (mine still looks sharp in black with alloy wheels), but it's soundly trounced in the interior department. Actually, if I were to pick a single aspect of the new car that's leaps and bounds ahead of the old one, it would be the interior.

    The only concern that I had during my long test drive is that the more noticeable engine drone may prove tiring in long trips. Now I should mention that I was driving at 140+ kmh (about 88 mph) most of the time where the engine is revving at about 3300 rpm. When I slowed down to 100 kmh (62 mph), noise was more tolerable. My 2002 Corolla revs at about 3000 rpm when I'm doing 140 kmh (due to its taller gearing) and that makes a difference in the decibel level that I noticed when I jumped into my car and drove back to work on the same roads I was test driving the new Corolla on and at the same speed. The difference wasn't huge, mind, since at high speeds, wind noise is more noticeable in my 2002 Corolla (moon roof equipped) than in the 2003 Corolla I drove (sans moon roof).

    So there you go. I hope this helps and sorry for the (very) long post :)
  • flootfloot Posts: 22
    Hi Larry -- I lurk over on the Protege5 board because I LOVE the way that car looks.

    Do Meade and all the folks over there know that you are sneaking out and flirting with Corollas?

    Last Sunday I had to walk onto the Toyota dealership lot and see a Matrix in person. (My first love will always be hatchbacks/small wagons for their utility). I also looked at the 2003 Corollas and was more impressed than I thought I would be. Nice interior improvements, especially the higher location of the climate and radio controls -- and thankfully, better cupholders.

    To those who end up getting the 2003 Corollas -- enjoy! It looks like a winner.
  • britton2britton2 Posts: 305
    I will have to get over to the dealership and take a look at the '03 out of curiosity - I am not interested however it buying it or any other car right now - I've had my '01 LE for almost a year and I am quite pleased with it - but I've seen pics of the '03 and I especially admire the new exterior styling as well as the interior - the man who sold me my car last year said they only have 2 new Corollas right now - he too is very impressed with the car - thanks guys for your reviews -
  • protegextwoprotegextwo Posts: 1,265
    Susan, I love my pair of 2000 Protege ES's, however after 3 years it might be time to trade them in? Or we might hold on to them. NOTHING, is forever is it? My wife and I have narrowed our decision to a 2003 PRO-5, 2003 Toyota Matrix, 2003 Toyota Corolla or a 2003 Mazda MVP or a combo of two of them. Also, possible,... a Honda CRV? Nevertheless, the research starts, now.

  • protegextwo : The difference in MSRP and invoice is at least 1500. (based on invoice of increases once you add more options. Again, the invoice at seems pretty low. I hope edmunds has invoice of 03 corolla soon. So, $500 off MSRP, they still making lots of profit. But you can definitely get better deal.
    Good luck
  • flootfloot Posts: 22
    I think the ecology class lectures I took a few years ago came pretty close. :~)

    Sounds like you have some great vehicles to choose from -- best of luck with the quest.

  • lfanlfan Posts: 61
    protegextwo: I don't know how far away you are from Chambersburg, PA but check out They have a "no-haggle" approach. Their prices are the best I have seen on the web on Corollas, $300-$500 over invoice. I recommend anyone else in the market residing in the mid-south PA and DC areas to check out this dealer.
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    Yes, that sums it up nicely! I have extensive experience in the 88-91 generation, and more still with the 98-02 gen cars. Your point about the difference in apparent solidity in the new car is absolutely what I felt. This is hard to describe to someone who hasn't driven both cars, but in size, ride quality, solidity, room, and trunk [the '03 is actually bigger], this car reminds me of nothing else but our '94 Mercedes W202 C [a C220 in our case] - for less than half the price. Can't compare the safety or braking, of course, but in terms of how the car feels on the road, this is the most apt comparison I could conjure. Just an overwhelming surprise...
  • I have a 1996 Corolla DX that has an oak interior without the thick arm rest on the center console. I've seen several DXs on EBAY with them and wonder if it was only an option? Where am I able to buy one of these. The dealership had them for like $117 and it didn't look like the huge thick one that had come with the car new. Does anyone know any place I could possibly look? Thanks.
  • Ifan is right. That dealer gives pretty good deal, but they don't seem to have corolla S. I have been checking their inventory every day. Maybe it's sold right away when the cars arrive or they just don't have it. :(
  • lfanlfan Posts: 61
    digiturbo: What I did to ensure I got the Corolla S was to work closely with the dealership to see if their allocation meets my requirements: model, equipment, color. With Fitzgerald's, they honored their internet price ($300-$500 over invoice) even when I reserved the car in advance.

    I think you will be please with the Corolla S. It seems like most folks are going for the LE or, lesser degree, the CE. The S may not have some of convenience features as the LE (double stack center arm rest, variable intermittent wipers) nor the "mini"-Lexus interior decor. But it's stylish in its own right which has turned a more than a few heads in the 3 weeks I've driven it.
  • protegextwoprotegextwo Posts: 1,265
    "So, $500 off MSRP, they still making lots of profit. But you can definitely get better deal."

    No doubt. Nonetheless, I was just relating a price, one dealer was offering. Edmunds suggests TMV on a new Corolla is MSRP, lol! My local Toyota Dealer has hinted all Corolla sold so far have been MSRP deals or a tad higher. Due to dealer added crap (pin stripes, undercoating, yada yada). I prefer to wait until the stock builds up and the acclaim dies down. However, I'm not dissing anyone who has or shortly will purchase a 2003 Corolla. BTW, I'm open to all new info on these cars! Including pricing. :-)

  • Which dealer in Toronto could give a grand rebate?
    The rebate for 03 Corolla could be CDN$800 off MSRP as I ever heard.
  • samv3samv3 Posts: 8
    Would appreciate if anyone can tell me how to check air leaks through the windshield. I had my windshield replaced but i can hear a different noise like air coming from outside but very hard to find out by using hand while driving. Can anyone give me any guidance on this.

  • Use smoke to check air leakage?
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    ...Use tape around the windshield seal on the outside - keep moving it around until you locate the source of the problem.
  • Is any one else having an idle problem with their 03 mine is revving up to 2000 rev when I start it, when I test drove another one at the dealership it had the same problem, not sure if it is normal or a problem
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    Are you in a cold weather climate?
  • lfanlfan Posts: 61
    My 2003 also revs to 2000 rpm at engine starts. It should be ok as long as the engine has sufficient lubrication. I will ask my dealer when I next bring it in.
  • gman40gman40 Posts: 15
    All the 1.8 engines from Toyota do this.
    My brother has the Celica, same deal.
    I have a theory that perhaps it helps lubricate
    the engine faster. Anyway it is normal and them
    2003 Corolla's are some fine cars. I had the pleasure to check out an S at my dealership.
    MSRP was $15,900. What a deal. I think this may be my next car. I have been a loyal Honda guy for the past 10years. I drove the new civic and it was just so boring. I love the fact this is being
    referred to as a little Lexus. I love the Lexus,
    but only have enough $$ for a Toyota that wants to be a Lexus. Anyhow I need to drive one so I can see for myself. I am also wondering I like the looks of the chromed door handles on the interior, but if I understand correctly you have to get the leather to get it in the LE. I may go
    with the S anyway because I thing I can pick up a
    lot of babes in it(lol). They go for that boy racer look. Of course it would be nice to have something more in the engine bay to back those looks up. Oh well I guess you just can't have everything.(jemk)
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    Driving a standard transmission enhances your appeal to the opposite sex, from what I've observed. Plus, it will make the most out of those 130 hp. Being only 2590 lbs, having good torque breadth, and equipped with a stick, I'll bet you'll see Corolla 0-60 times in the very low 8's. My guess is that Car and Driver (the most objective, candid, and reputable of the major NON Consumer Reports auto mags, IMO) will manage 8.0-8.4 0-60 time.
  • I am in Dallas, it has not been cold. I thas been a lite winter for us.
  • Since I have discovered from various bulletin boards that it's really impossible to "order" a Toyota from factory, what's the chance of getting an LE with a manual shift? I like the options that come standard with an LE, but I'm afraid it's going to be tough finding a 5 speed. Does anyone have an idea what percentage of Corolla's (especially LE's) are going to be made with a manual transmission? Thanks,
  • protegextwoprotegextwo Posts: 1,265
    "Is any one else having an idle problem with their 03 mine is revving up to 2000 rev when I start it."
    by readytobuy8

    "My 2003 also revs to 2000 rpm at engine starts..."by lfan
    by lfan

    When, I took a 2003 Corolla LE test drive last week, I noticed the exact same thing. I currently own a pair of 2000 Mazda Protege's and they actually start off idling at a tic above 2200 rpm. I'm starting to believe, modern 4-cylinders engine share this characteristic. Nonetheless, Toyota builds the smoothest engine/tranny combo's in the auto world. I'm sure the "revs to 2000 rpm at engine starts" are just a idiosyncrasy of this engine and not a problem.

  • I mentioned this in a post a week or so ago. I noticed it immediately when I started the 2003 at the dealership. I've never been in a car that idled that high. Has me wondering?????
  • mbnut1mbnut1 Posts: 403
    My guess is that the high idle is there to warm up the catalytic converter faster to minimize cold engine emmisions.
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