Bought it in 2005 from a car supermarket. Apart from wear & tear items(tyres,brakes etc) I can honestly say that I've had almost two and a half years of trouble-free motoring until it got written off by a LHD lorry on the motorway.
No complaints about it's safety. Me and my mum miraculously came out of this one virtually unscathed thanks to the car.
Has been a decent car to drive with plenty of mid-range and enough go to keep up with most motorway traffic. The 2.0(114bhp)is pretty quiet, responsive and refined unless you're really giving it some. Handles pretty well too. Fuel economy questionable. Computer regularly reads mid 50s when mid to late 40s is a more realistic figure even on a run. I clock up a lot of miles and a 6th gear would be helpful on motorways especially.
Build quality good, but not as classy inside as my previous VW Bora. Friends keep ribbing me about it being an old mans car. Not the most exciting, but once you own one it's easy to see why some folks swear by them. Would I have another? Probably not, but I can certainly recommend them. Going for something more sporty next time.
Great to drive, good acceleration and feels sure footed. Slight niggles with interior. The internal door handles feel slightly loose as in they don't feel securely fitted. There is a gap between the stereo and the top of the dasboard especically in cold weather. The rear bumper is loose on one side. Not sure if Toyota's build quality is as good as it used to be. The mechanics of the car are great though. The engine and gearbox are very quiet and the gear change is very smooth (better than my old avensis) and the brakes are very good too.
Just drove a 54-plate T-Sport today, and first things first; it felt like a brand new car. Superb.
It strikes an impressive balance between civility and madness, though it could use more grunt below 6000rpm. Yes, below 6000rpm. Above that it pulls like a train, but you won't find many Pendolinos that put out such an addictive howl.
The chassis isn't uber-sharp but it rides very well according to my backside, feeling solid but never harsh. That's the ride, not my backside.
Mid-30s mpg is the norm if you're not too heavy with the loud pedal, but I saw the instant consumption gauge fall to 5.3mpg when I was pushing past 7000rpm...
Around town most will probably want more grunt, but you can stroke the T-Sport along with the flow of traffic. Its major failing comes to light here, though. The 189bhp engine is all or nothing and it's a challenge to change down and get the revs spot on for a quick take-off, meaning that if you want to nip into a gap or just put on a burst of speed you've either got to change down and floor it so that pedestrians scowl or you've just got to forget it altogether.
If you drive mostly around town get something with a broader spread of torque. If, like me, you do a good mix of driving, want the screaming engine now and again and you're not too bothered about deliberately blocking Mr 50mph-in-a-30-limit-while-on-his-phone, then the T-Sport is a winner.
Did I mention that the one I drove was 3 years old and it felt absolutely brand new?
I drive an early 2002 model with 43000 miles. I've had the car since July this year and apart from getting Toyota to fix the cigarette lighter under their used car warranty there have been no problems. Very comfortable and smooth car. Great air conditioning and sound system. Lots of space for a 3 door hatch. The 1.4 makes it a bit slower than I'd like but then you expect this from this size of engine. I'm 19 so couldn't afford the insurance on a bigger engined version! Looks very smart too especially with the T3 alloy wheels.
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