Toyota Corolla Overview
It’s been 50 years since the original Toyota Corolla was released in Japan. Today, it still fulfills the same purpose. It’s the bread and butter of Toyota’s lineup. This practical, no-nonsense car is the best-selling vehicle of all-time! Let’s take a look at the evolution of the Toyota Corolla through the years.
Toyota Corolla Through the Years
1st Generation (1966-1969)
- The first gen Corolla wasn’t available to the USA until 1968.
- The car was priced around $1700.
- A 1100 CC K Pushrod engine powered this RWD car.
- Some side mirrors were located closer to the headlights than the A pillars.
2nd Generation (1970 – 1974)
- In 1970, the Corolla took on a more rounded body.
- 1400 CC T and 1600 CC 2T engines were added to the lineup.
3rd Generation (1975 – 1978)
- In 1974, the Toyota Corolla got rounder, bigger, and heavier.
- Front seat retracting seat belts were added
- The car was available as a 2-door sedan, 4-door sedan, and station wagon.
4th Generation (1979 – 1983)
- Toyota offered a smaller grille and a more boxy design.
- A 1.8L engine powered the Corolla, producing 75 hp.
- A 3-speed automatic transmission was made available.
5th Generation (1984 – 1987)
- Corolla took on a sharp-edged, sloping hood design.
- Most Corollas transitioned to FWD.
- The first Corollas were built in the US.
6th Generation (1988 – 1992)
- The car took on a slightly rounded, more aerodynamic design.
- Features like AC, power steering, stereo, and dual outside mirrors were still optional.
- In 1990, all Corollas had fuel injection.
7th Generation (1993 – 1997)
- Toyota made its car even more rounded and heavy.
- According the EPA classification, the Corolla went from “subcompact” to “compact” in this generation.
8th Generation (1998 – 2002)
- The 8th gen Corolla grew bigger, but lost weight.
- An all-aluminum 1.8L 4-cylinder engine was used, improving fuel economy.
9th Generation (2003 – 2008)
- This Corolla featured a small grille, rounded headlamps, and soft, conservative styling cues.
- The wheelbase was 5” longer than the previous generation.
- Base Corolla’s now included “necessities” such as CD player, power mirrors, and AC.
10th Generation (2009 – 2013)
- While the Corolla was still conservative overall, sharper styling cues added a contemporary feel to the exterior design that the 9th generation lacked.
- The 1.8L 4-cylinder engines was now rated at 132 hp.
- An XRS trim was added, including luxuries like leather, navigation, and sunroof.
11th Generation (2014 – )
- Toyota redesigned the Corolla, putting its exterior appearance on-par with modern competition.
- Like it has throughout the generations, the Corolla is still known as simple, inexpensive, and practical car.
- CVT transmission is now available.
- A more fuel-efficient Eco model was added in 2014.
- Toyota Entune infotainment is also optional in the 11th
Toyota Corolla Fast Facts
- Toyota Corolla reached a milestone of 40 million cars sold in July of 2013!
- Indian businessman Azim Premji allegedly drives a Corolla, despite having a net worth of around $16 billion.
- GEO Prizms and Chevrolet Prizms were essentially Toyota Corollas that resulted from a joint venture between Toyota and GM.
Similar Competitive Models
- Honda Civic
- Ford Focus
- Mazda MAZDA3
- Chevrolet Cruze
- Kia Forte
- Hyundai Elantra
- Dodge Dart
- Nissan Sentra