Here’s the latest reader question, along with my reply!
Terri asks: I heard you on the Bill Meyer show; you talked about the Toyota Corolla as one of the best cars to buy for dependability. Is that true for a used car as well? If not what would be a really good used car to buy for the long haul? Thanks!
My reply: It is very hard to go wrong with the Corolla – which is the world’s best-selling car, ever. More than the VW Beetle. More than the Model T. But the most persuasive testimony I can provide is out on the road. Take a look. You will regularly see Corollas from the ’90s still in service as daily drivers. How many Dodge Neons do you see? How about Chevy Cavaliers? Res ipsa loquitur!
Part of the reason for the Corolla’s enduring goodness is that Toyota is very conservative with the engineering – and with the changes, model year to model year. Even the newest Corollas (2020) still have naturally aspirated (no turbo) engines. And the recent vintage ones still used simpler six-speed automatics (the current car’s optional automatic is a CVT, but it seems to be well-built and in A to B cars, these transmissions usually perform well).
Note also the Corolla’s unusually roomy for the class interior; it actually has more backseat room than many mid-sized cars.
These cars also tend to be purchased by people looking for value – and such people usually take pretty good care of their cars, making a used Corolla a safer-than-usual bet.
The main thing is due diligence. Check the car over thoroughly – or have it checked over by someone competent to do so that you trust. If it checks out, you should have a new friend for a very long time!
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Got a question about cars, Libertarian politics – or anything else? Click on the “ask Eric” link and send ’em in!
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