I bought this car from my neighbor as my first car when I was 16 (2 years ago) for 1,200$. It had 179,000 miles on it or more when I bought it. It now has 198,000 miles and has been running great. I have only had to replace the radiator (which is a common repair needed for this particular car), valve lifters and brakes on this car since I have had it. Right now my idle air control valve is going bad (which is also a common repair needed done) but she is still chugging as I save up to pay for the repair. Honestly, this is a great car. I have never been stranded with it and it gets amazing gas mileage. I love this car. I can't imagine driving another one. Also my car is automatic not manual.
I love the great gas mileage this car gets. I also love have maneuverable it is. It is also a very reliable car.
I don't know about suggested improvement but I will say if you are looking to buy this car and it is coming with high mileage (which it most likely will), make sure you can either afford to replace the radiator when it goes bad, or that they previous owner had it replaced.
Additionally, I am not sure if this is common with all of the cars, but the body on my tercel has some significant rust (it isn't too bad but significant enough to raise a little bit of concern). So just beware of that.
Lastly beware of a tercel that has a high idle. That means their idle air control valve is going bad and that is an expensive fix and will burn your oil until you can get it replaced.
I am on my 5th Toyota mostly Corolla's and this was my first Tercel (1997).
I bought it 10 years ago for a mere $4,000, 60,000 miles, in great shape!
I have taken good care of it with regular maintenance and it runs circles around my new Camry!!! Runs like a top, drives like a Champion, purrs like a kitten & STILL gets a WHOPPING 36 CITY!!!
I never even drive the new Camry since I like this one better!!
AND, the A/C works much better than the new Camry!!!!
I hope my baby car NEVER dies!!!!
36 mph, city
Runs like a TOP
A/C freezes you out
Never left me stranded on the side of the road
I've have driven all the American vehicle more than once but, I never dreamed that a Toyota would change my mind about driving. I have driven my '97" tercel for 2 yrs. W/o any major problems. I accumulated close to 300,000 miles. Love the dependability especially when your grandchildren are expecting to attend their sporting events. You have my vote for value.
Safety, Dependability and good Gas Mileage
The air conditioner system.The connection signals are good but,when you turn system on it kicks on then shutdown any suggestion on repairing this problem
I got Manson, my tercel, from my grandparents. I learned how to drive in it and it's great for driving and has awesome fuel economy, but it kinda kills my hotness scale. It's a great car for learners who don't really car about their image. Had to replace the cardboard speakers. Make sure you don't get in any accidents, because the car will be creamed and the car you hit will only have minor damage. So overall, great car and wonderful gas mileage if you don't get in accidents and don't care about being called a grandma on the road.
the car itself should be a little sturdier. I'm pretty sure its made out of plastic.