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Toyota Corolla Hatchback 1.6 VVT-i T3 3d Auto (02) (2003/03)

Toyota Corolla Hatchback 1.6 VVT-i T3 3d Auto (02) (2003/03) - Owner Review

Bought the 3 door model - and I'd never buy a 3 door again. Don't use the back seats much, but its a real pain for someone to climb in to the back. Being a 3 door the driver and front passenger seat belts are stored a long way back from the driving position.
3

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Review submitted by
Andrew Gadd on

Toyota Corolla Hatchback (02-06)

Summary

3 out of 5

What does this car say about you?
I don't really care what others think - or what the car says about me. But it's a pretty anonymous, silver Japanese car.

What do your friends / family / neighbours think of the car?
I'm sure they don't really care what car I drive.

Would you buy this car again and why?
No. The constant noise from the tyres (etc) are a real pain, and I'd look for a quieter car next time. The wheel bearing failure has dented my confidence in the 'unsurpassed' Toyota reputation for reliability.

What are you likely to buy next?
Really have no idea.

Buying experience

3 out of 5

Type of dealer you bought from?
Independent

Did you buy this car new?
Used

What price did you pay?
£8,000

When did you buy the car?
January 2005

Did you get a good deal and why?
Probably not. But I had two cars to trade in - so I wasn't in a position to bargain much.

Is there any special reason why you bought this car?
Toyota Reliability. Glowing test reports.

What was the dealer like?
Fair. Didn't feel as though I was being pushed along to much.

Driving it

2 out of 5

What's it like to drive?
Almost no effort to drive. Electric steering is pretty lifeless, and probably over assisted. 1.6 litre engine goes pretty well. It's an auto, and I suppose 30mpg around town and 40mpg on a long journey is ok. Biggest pain is noise. Tyre noise from the front, despite seeking the (reputedly) quietest tyres available. From the rear is a resonant 'boom' when driving over any (even minor) road bump. Makes long journeys tiresome and tiring. The car will cruise all day, just stopping for petrol - but the driver will give up before the car will, from noise exhaustion and ringing in his ears. Auto box is pretty good - adapting to different road conditions well.

What's it like to park?
Visibility isn't very good out of the back, but practice makes perfect. Very light steering, so it's no effort to park.

Living with it

3 out of 5

Have you had any problems with the car?
Had a previous Corolla and expected 100% reliability. However, this is the first vehicle I've ever owned that had a wheel bearing fail. Some say I've been lucky not to experience any other problems, and (£200) is a small price to pay over 5 years. But (even so)this has severely dented my confidence in the car - and Toyota.

What's most practical about your car?
Bought the 3 door model - and I'd never buy a 3 door again. Don't use the back seats much, but its a real pain for someone to climb in to the back. Being a 3 door the driver and front passenger seat belts are stored a long way back from the driving position.

Favourite gadget, option or accessory?
Non really. The electric mirrors are very practical. I tend to move the near side mirror down when reverse parking - to see the kerb more clearly.

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