Toyota redesigned the Corolla for the 2009 model year, though it is still the same car at heart. In other words, it’s still the quintessential secretary’s car. If you’re looking for a small, extremely reliable, extremely economical car to drive to and from work, stop right here. Go to your local Toyota dealership and pick out your new Corolla. The 09 Corolla is great at this – getting you to and from work without gulping much gas at all ( it’s fantastically fuel efficient ), and does so with very few breakdowns / repairs. What you won’t get is performance – speed, handling, or braking. Even if you opt for the “big” engine, you’ll have just 158 HP under the hood. Folks who get the standard engine will have to suffer with just 132 ponies. Fortunately the Corolla weighs just 2767 lbs, or it would be really ugly.
But what does performance really matter? The Corolla is not for enthusiasts. To it’s target market, the Corolla is nearly perfect. If you’re looking for a tad more sportiness, you might want to spend a little time shopping the Mazda 3 and Honda Civic instead.
2009 Toyota Corolla Specs
- 132 HP 1.8 liter 4 cylinder engine
- Optional 158 HP 2.4 liter 4 cylinder ( XRS )
- 5 speed manual, 4 speed automatic, 5 speed auto ( XRS only )
- Side and Curtain airbags standard
- Curb weight: 2767 lbs
- EPA Says: 26 MPG city / 35 MPG highway ( 1.8 w/ 5spd )
2009 Toyota Corolla Reviews
Edmunds reviews the 2009 Toyota Corolla and says – ‘Regardless of which trim level you choose, the 2009 Toyota Corolla excels as a commuter car, as the suspension delivers a comfortable, controlled ride. Handling is uninspiring, however. Body roll is decently controlled, but the electric steering on non-XRS models provides so little feedback, you may find yourself making corrections simply to keep the car traveling in a straight line. Toyota retuned this setup for the XRS, and indeed its steering feels crisper and weightier. Driven on a back road, the Corolla XRS is undeniably a capable compact sedan, but compared to rivals like the Mazda 3, Civic and Lancer, it’s not a very entertaining one.’
Family Car reviews the 2009 Toyota Corolla and says – ‘Performance of the XRS was pleasantly perky, and casual driving took a lot less throttle to accelerate away from traffic lights without feeling like a traffic cone with wheels. The five-speed manual was reasonably crisp and didn’t suffer from synchronizer lockup when revved to its redline. Not, of course, that the forces are that great to begin with. Still, it scoots entertainingly and with more security than lesser Corollas, thanks primarily to the lower profile tires with less sidewall squirm. What the XRS lacks is a true sport suspension with firmer springs and shocks and well-sorted anti-roll bars.’
The Car Connection reviews the 2009 Toyota Corolla and says – ‘We found the lesser models just okay. Their interiors are cheaper than expected. Their performance is adequate with five-speed manual, less so with automatic. Their ride is good and their handling typical, better than previous rent-a-car Corollas — due largely to their two-inch wider front and 2.9-inch wider rear tracks — but not up to best-in-class. Part of the problem, at least subjectively, is their ultra-light, feedback-free electric power steering (EPS). On the plus side, their brakes are strong and fade-free in our on-road testing due to their larger front rotors and “high-performance” pads, and despite their much-maligned rear drums.’
TTAC reviews the 2009 Toyota Corolla and says – ‘That first drive almost turned into seven meters. The Corolla’s brake pedal felt like it was going to drop to the floor. We’re talking seriously mushy stoppers, unlike the firm ’08 comparison tester at hand. In sum, my five-meter impression was not a success; every time I hopped out of the ’09 and sat in the ’08, my “sensitivity performance” improved, and not just because of the smell. If any connection was going to happen, a longer drive was in order’