Go Back   Team-BHP > BHP India > Team-BHP Reviews > Long-Term Ownership Reviews


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 9th April 2007, 14:49   #1
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Delhi
Posts: 2,175
Thanked: 128 Times
Default Toyota Corolla H4 Automatic EDIT: Now at 8+ years/78,000 kms

Since my office shifted to Gurgaon last year, I had actively considered buying an automatic since I prefer to drive myself, and the daily drive was exceeding 65 kms/2 hours. Finally, I shortlisted 3: Corolla, City, and Civic. I was more interested in Corolla or Civic, since I already own a car comparable to City. Initially, my heart was for Corolla for build, interiors, legendary reliability, and fuel economy. But, then new Corolla has been launched in Japan, and is expected in India during 2008. Buying the present generation Corolla when the new one is in the market somewhere around the world would have been risky because of lower resale value, lower buying comfort. In looks and styling, Civic scores over Corolla for many buyers, and I also felt the same.

Finally, I test drove both cars thrice and I finally bought the Corolla. This was despite the fact that Corolla H4 auto is priced at same as Civic Auto. Further, Corolla resale could go down once the new one is launched. Personally, I felt the Corolla to be much better at driving with a better engine. I am a short driver and there are two things about Civic that caused me great discomfort: the distance from seating position to seeing the bonnet. It is like driving from the back seat and can be painful in slow moving curvy traffic, where you have to weave. That may mean slower response times in cutting through traffic. Just drive Civic and make your own decision. I have done further research and the large dashboard is usually not found on many cars. Bottomline, sit around 8-10 cms further back (which is the excess space taken by the digital speedo) in your car and check how that affects you. Maybe you may get habitualised but sitting so far back definitely cuts down on maneuvering (is it also responsible for higher turning diameter, do not know) My driving intuition says, the more far back the dashboard, the worse it is to see and slower responses around corners and traffic. Civic also has a greater turning radius. Further, the digital speedo distracts.

I took delivery of Corolla Auto on 8-3-07 and so far have driven 2000 kms. Although I can not comment on long term quality, it was comforting to know that Toyota and its products rank at the top worldwide in long term reliability. It may not attract as much attention as the Civic but it feels elegant to me, and it has one attribute that most cars just can't boast about; an impeccable long-term reliability rating.

Corolla is roomy and comfortable inside without feeling large, and is impressively quiet at my practical speeds (do not exceed 100 kmph). It can be seen that wind and engine noise are kept almost totally devoid from the cabin; this is something that I cannot say about City CVT or Civic.

Handles predictably and provides a comfortable ride. However, getting used to higher seating position took 2-3 days and with a cushion, I now get a panoramic view while at the same time sit like on a sofa. It does smooth out rough pavement quite nicely. Corolla is not for hard, high rev driving and is best driven with a light foot. Although it's not as agile as Civic, it does corner extremely well and remains predictable and secure when pushed to its cornering limits. Bottomline: it will respond when needed and feel effortless to drive when cruising.


The engine is sweet, quick and thrifty. However, after driving a 88 bhp Corsa, it does take a bit getting used to faster acceleration, which may require hard braking initially. Braking performance is very good. Honda's engine is reputed to be equally great but I found it more noisy and felt high revs at initial acceleration. Though the auto transmission is slower than manual, pick up is still extremely fast. Further, the 4-speed automatic transmission is extremely smooth; shifts are hardly felt.

Interiors appear durable, high quality, well finished and definitely score over the Civic. For the same price (now I can hear so what, Civic is newer ), I got all leather seats, wooden panel, auto headlights, intermittent wash wipers, etc. The quality and the look of the Corollaís interior has also been a big selling point. Like the Civic, all materials feel solid and well put together; no exposed screws or loose plastic. The high roof imparts a roomy feel and allows a relatively high driving position. This was the major selling point for me, as I now find the seating position very comfortable. I have found that it enables me to have perfect all around vision. Although I have not sat in the back seat so far, other users feedback has been positive.

Fuel efficiency was 10.5-10.8 kmpl in the first 1000 kms. However, after the first service it has gone up to 11.4-11.6 kmpl in the last 2 fills. Remember this is an automatic, I use the auto AC (at 27C which cools great), and my drive involves around 20 kms at 70-90 kmph, 10 kmph at less than 50 kmph, and 4 kms that take 35 minutes. Also this is a 4-speed transmission (side info: according to official US figures, Corolla is the 8th most FE car in the US. Ranking above are it are 4 hybrids, Yaris-manual, Yaris-auto, and Honda fit).

Note from mod: Please do not use FONT/SIZE tags.
vasudeva is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 9th April 2007, 16:46   #2
Senior - BHPian
 
Dippy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Mumbai, India
Posts: 7,269
Thanked: 164 Times
Default

Thats a fabulous report there vasudeva. Its the first for a Corolla AT on the forum. Your FE figures are ver impressive. Its a myth that AT cars are not FE. They are, you just should know how to drive to the get that.

I drive an OHC AT myself and I'm getting 11 kpl in the city with AC on 100%. Do give details of the performance of the AT tranny.

Nice car . About the Corolla / Civic choice well its to each his own
Dippy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 9th April 2007, 17:10   #3
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Delhi
Posts: 2,175
Thanked: 128 Times
Default

My Corolla AT gave around 10.8 kmpl on the first 1200 kms and 3 fills. For this I used premium unleaded (at 44.35/litre in Delhi). When I went for 1st service, they told me to use only regular as it gives the same FE. For the next 2 fills, I have used regular, and it is now 11.5 kmpl in the last week (388 kms). With Delhi-Guragon border NH8 choked at 9 AM, it takes 40 mins for me to reach the last 4 kms to my office. When that becomes clear, maybe FE would go up to 12 kmpl. I keep records of my weekly FE and have maintained it for around 1 year on my old Corsa and new Corolla. In Corolla or any other car, I think FE becomes better if driven lightly, engine switched off if car is standing for more than 15 secs, and speeds from 50-100 kmph. With Corolla, I do not think it matters if the AC is on or not. Better to keep AC at comfortable 27C than at a very cool 23-24C.

Regarding AT FE and reliability, I think both Toyota and Honda are in a way different class than Maruti and Hyundai. They have been selling automatics in the demanding US market for more than 40 years, and are the leaders in an `automatic' market. Corolla's AT is fine-initially for 200 kms, it had a rubberband effect, which has now disappeared, and acceleration is smooth and quick. For high accelerating car, braking is quick and precise.

Finally I have been so pleased with the higher than expected FE (I was expecting 10 kmpl at premium unleaded and am now getting 11-11.5 at lower cost regular) and with comfort of an automatic transmission, that I have vowed to never buy a manual again. My last word about manuals: no matter how expensive the interiors and how comfortable the seats, if you drive yourself, buy an auto, and spare the constant chore of clutch shift and the resultant left leg fatigue. It is more important for driver comfort than even an AC.

Yes Civic is a great car, but I am a short and conservative buyer, who loves to drive on my own, and in the Civic I could not see the [SIZE=2]hood over the extremely deep dash. That cut down on the enjoyment I derive from driving.
[/SIZE]
vasudeva is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 9th April 2007, 17:30   #4
Senior - BHPian
 
Dippy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Mumbai, India
Posts: 7,269
Thanked: 164 Times
Default

I agree with you vasudeva. And yes that makes two of us. I'm a short driver too.

For traffic conditions such as ours an AT is the best bet. The Toyota and Honda ATs are pretty quick. The Marutis used to have the old 3 speed tranny and on top of it they did not have the know how to deal with an auto tranny problem, surprising considering they are India's largest manufacturer.

A speed of 60 to 70 kph cosistenly at around 1500 to 1600 rpm gives good FE.
Dippy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 9th April 2007, 17:39   #5
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Delhi
Posts: 2,175
Thanked: 128 Times
Default

I had posted in this forum earlier that OECD and US EPA figures for FE and engine rpm give a curve with peak FE between 50-100 kmph (60 mph). This is for all petrol engines and not for a specific model. This would imply a rpm of 1500-2500 rpm in top gear. For petrol engines, 100 kmph corresponds to around 2,500 rpm. Corolla AT has 2000 rpm at around 85 kmph.
vasudeva is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 9th April 2007, 17:44   #6
Senior - BHPian
 
rahul_intlad's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Pune
Posts: 1,577
Thanked: 2 Times
Default

Dippy,vasudeva unfortunately most do not think like you.Talk AT and everybody talks about bad driving experience and FE issues ,perhaps to do with the fact that first generation automatic transmissions were not all that great to own.I would love to buy an NHC CVT for my mother but almost everybody is against the decision of buying an automatic.

I wish more cars in the mass market segment come with automatic transmission option.

Ps: Nice detailed review.

Last edited by rahul_intlad : 9th April 2007 at 17:46.
rahul_intlad is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 9th April 2007, 19:27   #7
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Delhi
Posts: 2,175
Thanked: 128 Times
Default

Bad driving experience and bad FE is from Maruti's obsolete ATs. Toyota and Honda sell mostly ATs in the US market, and their ATs are proven and successful. They are also class leaders in FE. If you are buying a car for your mother, why consider a manual at all. NHC CVT does give 13-14 kmpl and more, with proper driving (same holds for a manual as well). Toyota and Honda impose very liitle FE penalty for automatics.
vasudeva is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 9th April 2007, 19:56   #8
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 1,350
Thanked: 31 Times
Default

Excellent review for the Toyota AT. I'll forward this to a friend of mine who's deciding whether to buy a Civic or a Corolla.

Being a Civic AT owner myself I did read your review with a little bit of bias. :-) As Dippy said, to each its own.

Your FE is excellent. I get 8 kmpl in Bangalore. Lot of stop-go traffic, and I'm very hard on the pedal. AT's are good fun to drive. It does save a lot of hassles, especially in stop-go traffic.

This inspires me to write up for my Civic.
csentil is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 9th April 2007, 20:05   #9
BHPian
 
subbarp's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 237
Thanked: 80 Times
Default

csentil,

really appreciate your acknowledgement that all of us do share biases towards our cars. We would do tons of service to all confused folks out there looking to choose, if we give facts and opinions(qualified). I remember the days when I was in the dilema, I would read every word wherever I could find.

thanks
subbarp is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 9th April 2007, 20:06   #10
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Delhi
Posts: 2,175
Thanked: 128 Times
Default

In real world conditions, both Civic AT/MT and Corolla AT/MT have almost the same FE. Official figures give Civic/Corolla AT at 30/38 mpg (US figures so multiply by 0.425) This can be verified both from the web and from actual figures posted on US EPA and consumerreports.org.

For Corolla, I know from other users in India that manual gives 12-13 kmpl in Delhi normal traffic. AT has a range of 8.5-14/15 kmpl. So in stop and go Bangalore, Corolla should also give the same as Civic. My relative has a Corolla AT which gives 10 kmpl, but his driver drives his AT, and he leaves for office later in peak traffic. I searched on the US EPA and other reputed sites (when I was researching Civic and Corolla) that actual users of Civic/Corolla achieved highs and lows of around 8-18 kmpl.

Now about Civic, I had planned for Civic but finally bought a Corolla because of some reasons specific to me detailed above. Both have same FE, both are equally lon-term reliable, and both earn 5-star out of 5 in front airbag protection from NHTSA. Both also earn the highest safety rating from IIHS.
vasudeva is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 9th April 2007, 20:23   #11
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Delhi
Posts: 2,175
Thanked: 128 Times
Default

Being a Civic AT owner myself I did read your review with a little bit of bias. :-) As Dippy said, to each its own.

Nearly all car owners feel proud of their cars and defend it. That being said, the long-term reliability of Toyota and Honda is legendary and proven. 10-year problem records attest to this. They will always give FE that is at the top of their class, and equal to achieved by other cars a class above.
vasudeva is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 9th April 2007, 20:50   #12
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Delhi
Posts: 2,175
Thanked: 128 Times
Default

Your FE is excellent. I get 8 kmpl in Bangalore. Lot of stop-go traffic, and I'm very hard on the pedal. AT's are good fun to drive. It does save a lot of hassles, especially in stop-go traffic

Both Corolla and Civic are known to give highs and lows of 8.5-17 kmpl by actual users. Both ATs have same FE, although Corolla manual has a higher official FE than Civic.

You can check out both US EPA, consumerreports.org, and other reputed websites. My AT gives 11-11.5 kmpl, but that is because I do not drive hard, and only use a light foot on accelerator. A relative of mine gets 9-10 kmpl on Corolla AT but he lets his driver drive the AT and he leaves for office at 10 AM in peak conditions. Corolla manual is known to give 12-13 kmpl in normal (mixed) conditions.
vasudeva is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 1st May 2007, 16:13   #13
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Delhi
Posts: 2,175
Thanked: 128 Times
Default

I have published some comparison of Corolla, Civic, Sonata, and Elantra at this link:

This is from JD Power and Consumer Reports:

vineetnigam - COROLLA VS CIVIC
vasudeva is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 1st May 2007, 16:27   #14
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Delhi
Posts: 2,175
Thanked: 128 Times
Default

The JD Power Comparison of Corolla, Civic and Elantra is here: This is public info:

vineetnigam - JD POWER COROLLA CIVIC ELANTRA
vasudeva is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 1st May 2007, 16:38   #15
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Delhi
Posts: 2,175
Thanked: 128 Times
Default

I have now posted Consumer Reports 10 year report on Corolla and its review for 2007:

vineetnigam - CR COROLLA REVIEW 2007
vasudeva is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
2009 Toyota Corolla Altis 1.8 GL ownership report - 68,000 kms and close to 8 years later Vid6639 Long-Term Ownership Reviews 293 13th July 2017 14:51
Toyota Corolla Altis 1.8 AT - 4.5 years, 51000 kms. Running well...very well! geronimo Long-Term Ownership Reviews 39 12th May 2017 17:59
300,000 kms in 7.5 years on my Esteem Diesel. EDIT: Sold @ 3.4 Lakh kms benzinblut Long-Term Ownership Reviews 72 8th March 2014 01:54
Toyota Corolla Altis Automatic now available in 2 variants Vid6639 The Indian Car Scene 23 27th February 2012 00:12
All new Corolla coming soon EDIT: Corolla Altis now Launched extreme_torque The Indian Car Scene 295 19th September 2008 23:48


All times are GMT +5.5. The time now is 13:15.

Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Team-BHP.com
Proudly powered by E2E Networks