Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

Toyota Corolla through the Years; 1

Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

Toyota Corolla through the Years; 1

Article excerpt

Iain Curry

AUSTRALIA'S Toyota Corolla love affair has endured the best part of 50 years, and the fire burns brighter than ever today.

Across 11 Corolla generations we've bought 1.35million of these small passenger favourites, the model topping our national best-seller's list the past three years.

Who could have dared dream of such success when just 15 cars left Japan bound for Australia in November 1966?

We celebrate Corolla's golden anniversary with a look back through the model's evolution in the past half century.

1st Generation (1967)

Arrived in Australia as a two-door sedan and was a mere 3.85m long. New tech included MacPherson strut suspension and a four-speed transmission, and used a 44kW 1.1-litre or (from 1969) a 48kW, 1.2-litre four-cylinder with power going through the rear wheels. Toyota began assembling the Corolla at Port Melbourne in 1968.

2nd Generation (1970)

A hit with young people, Corolla became the second-best-selling car in the world. It passed the 1million sales mark with this second gen offering, bringing a more curvaceous exterior style, longer wheelbase and improved suspension.

3rd Generation (1975)

Gained popularity during the global oil crisis thanks to its fuel efficiency and development of a catalytic converter. Wind tunnel-aided exterior design and a focus on interior quality boosted its appeal, with annual Australian sales topping 20,000 for the first time in 1975. Available as a two-door, four-door, wagon and van. The 1.2-litre engine was replaced by a 1.3-litre in 1978, and a five-speed manual was offered.

4th Generation (1981)

Now more than 4m long, the body design evolved into a wedge shape and this was the last Corolla to have rear-wheel drive across the range. This generation finally scored coil-spring rear suspension (except the wagon). Global production reached 10million vehicles in March 1983. Australia gained the Toyota T-18 liftback version in October 1979 with a 1.8-litre engine and five-speed gearbox.

5th Generation (1985)

Transformed into a front-wheel drive car and engineered with the aid of computers. …

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