Roomy inside without feeling large outside, the Toyota Corolla is also impressively quiet. Corolla also has excellent fuel economy, while still posting good acceleration times, handling competently and providing a comfortable ride. The one drawback -- some of our drivers were not comfortable with the driving position. Overall, though, the Corolla is a fine choice.
Alerts
There are 13 recalls on this vehicle. Learn More.

Overall Owner Satisfaction

Consumer Reports’ Annual Owner Satisfaction Survey can improve the chances of finding a compatible car match. How? Our survey data reveals whether, all things considered, owners would buy the same car again. The answer to that question is what determines our owner-satisfaction rating, which is a powerful piece of intel because it predicts how well a particular model will satisfy other owners.

Overall Owner Satisfaction

Owner Satisfaction with:

Driving Experience

Includes acceleration and handling

What Owners Say

"Good performance. Ride actually improves with a full load (4 passengers plus luggage)."

John S., ON (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"I still enjoy driving this 14-year old car. It is a manual transmission, and accelerates very nicely. Handling is also quite good. Due to its size, it is not as good on icy roads."

Anonymous, ON (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"It's not a sports car, but it is seriously perky!"

Anonymous, CT (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Slow as molasses to get up to freeway speed, although when in "power mode" it has decent acceleration from a complete stop e.g. to get through an intersection."

Anonymous, OR (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Has VERY good acceleration when I have to floor it suddenly. Much peppier than my Subaru Forester. Good for highway passing. Nicely responsive in regular traffic, doesn't lag. Excellent, for an older car!"

Rebecca W., CO (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"This car is fun to drive around town but struggles above 75-80 mph on the freeway. quick and nimble with good vision."

Derik W., UT (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Just a great overall car... great runabout in the city."

Cheryl C., FL (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"For such a small engine the Corolla has surprising acceleration. Its a very good compromise of initial cost, reliability and operating cost."

Anonymous, MI (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Still a good drive, easy steering, above average acceleration."

Larry G., IL (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Still has power."

Anonymous, NJ (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Very peppy for a small car"

Richard G., ON (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Even after so many years it still handles nicely and has better pick-up then my husband's car which is 10 years newer."

Anonymous, MA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"runs great with very low operating costs"

Anonymous, CA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Pick up could be better"

Dave G., ON (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"The automatic transmission lacks driver control when acceleration is needed and downshifts excessively to accelerate. Typically the transmission shifts down one or more gear ranges to achieve acceleration anticipating a level of acceleration I did not specifically desire or need. I would prefer to have more control of the gear I wish to be in when accelerating."

Robert B., MI (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"This car, which is old and high mileage, still accelerates almost as quickly and crisply as it did when new, and the steering is still tightly responsive. I have to drive in heavy, high-speed traffic, and this car, while not a sports car, is plenty nimble. It's decent in winter driving, for a light, small, low-to-the-ground sedan, but of course it's not as good as a bigger vehicle, and doesn't have 4 wheel drive. But it doesn't cost as much as would such a vehicle (purchase price, insurance, gas mileage) - it is very good for what it is."

Anonymous, MN (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Love everything based on my use"

Anonymous, CA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Acceptable acceleration for a 1.4 L engine."

Anonymous, ON (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Disappointed with the 21 mpg. The ride is hard ."

Anonymous, NY (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Has a horrible turn radius for a compact car - cannot do a u-turn on a standard street."

Arlen B., OR (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"it serves me all of my needs great gas miles low cost of repairs gets me from point a to b"

Martin W., MA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"More than adequate acceleration and handling."

Raymond W., NY (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"OK, it's not a speedster by any means but I feel comfortable accelerating onto the interstate and the handling still feels very responsive."

Susan T., OH (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Satisfactory but not exciting."

Kris B., AZ (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"There is truly not a thing about this gem of a vehicle that does not meet or exceed my expectations."

Anonymous, ON (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Acceleration is excellent and has always has been."

Fred F., NJ (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Reliability"

Anonymous, FL (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Since I am doing relatively little driving at this point, it is adequate for my needs. We shall see what happens in the winter since I live in a pretty snowy area."

Anonymous, NY (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"My Corolla continues to handle as it did when I bought it almost 17 years ago! It is agile and nimble. While I don't normally get myself into difficult situations, I feel as if it could avoid bad consequences if I happened upon one."

Howard H., WA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"It feels solid. Steering and suspension are tight, especially in an older car."

FLINT T., WA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"A little sluggish in entering a freeway where acceleration is important and also going up steep roadways the ability to maintain speed drops considerably."

D F., CA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Acceleration is pretty anemic."

Anonymous, FL (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Drives and handles great."

T M., GA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Mostly it's just a nice perky little car for city driving."

Anonymous, IL (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"the 4 speed automatic transmission isn't as controllable as I would like it to be. In hill climbing it tends to downshift 2 gear levels in an effort to maintain constant speed when the speed control is engaged."

ROBERT B., MI (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"It is a 4 cylinder, so it accelerates as I would expect. Even after having the front brake discs turned and replacing the pads, the shimmy during braking returned after a few weeks."

BEN M., GA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Like driving a sports car; even after 13 years."

BRUCE D., CT (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"I had to have the manual transmission replaced. I learned that this was an issue common to the year of my vehicle and that Toyota refused to acknowledge to any owners of this model year and subsequent years that had the same transmission that they were defective (failing on many vehicles with less than 100k miles). I paid in excess of $4k to have a replacement transmission that Toyota switched to several model years later."

PAUL T., RI (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Ride is a little rough. I've ridden in newer Corollas and the rid is much better."

Anonymous, UT (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"The 2003 acceleration is ok but I am possibly comparing the vehicle with my other vehicles."

Anonymous, DC (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Acceleration is fine. Handling is better with larger than average and wide Michelin tires, which I can no longer afford. It handled like a sports car with the best tires."

Anonymous, OR (2003 Toyota Corolla)

Comfort

Includes seats, climate control, noise, and ride

What Owners Say

"Great lumbar support, little noise, very nice ride. Nice ride is also due to good tires."

Cheryl C., FL (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"It's a mostly comfortable ride, but you do feel every single bump and rock in the road. The noise-cancelling is wonderful. My mechanic has all the seals on the car are in good shape, which is great for an older car that sits out in the elements all the time."

Anonymous, NJ (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Quite noisy car should have considered a model up to get some more refinement"

John B., IL (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Seating position and comfort are excellent Ride is very good."

Anonymous, CT (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"cloth seats are great"

Anonymous, WI (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"nothing special but no complaints"

Anonymous, CA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Road noise is a little on the high side. Definitely have to turn up the radio when on the freeway."

Wm S., WA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Comfotable."

Royace P., IL (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"I often have problems with my back, particularly after sitting for some time. The Corolla has one of the most comfortable seats, and my back never hurts - even after a long drive."

Anonymous, ON (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Very noisy. Tough ride. Can hardly drink without spilling on myself. Size of everything small."

Anonymous, CA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"This is our third corolla, so we obviously like the make and model. This one is just very old, so it is worn out and stuff is broken and it's just not enjoyable to drive."

Judith D., GA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Good quiet ride. Much more fun to drive than my 2016 Outback."

Anonymous, MI (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Comfortable and smooth ride for an old vehicle."

David L., ON (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Has had a rattle when going uphill at about 40 kph almost since the beginning. Source never found."

Anonymous, BC (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Don't feel any bumps. Smooth ride."

Anonymous, NJ (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Roomy and comfortable seats front and back row, in light of this being a small car. Quiet and relatively smooth ride."

Anonymous, BC (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"The seats and ride are comfortable. The general noise level is higher than expected."

Jim T., VA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Lots of road noise and engine noise. Seats are adequate but not comfortable on a long ride."

Anonymous, CA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"One of the best cars for your money! Great comfort with very little noise."

Joshua B., CA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"New sedans are very close to the ground. This car is very easy to get in and out of. Very comfortable ride and roomy both front and back seats. A bit noisy."

Anonymous, NY (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"The only thing I don't like about my great little Corolla is the drivers seat. Not enough adjustments to make it comfortable."

Shirley D., WA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"I am very short. This car fits me, supports my back well, and, because the driver's seat has a separate control for vertical height, lets me see well. The car has gotten a bit noisier now that it's so old, but it's still a very quiet car overall. The suspension is finally beginning to age, just a bit, but not enough to affect handling; I just feel the road a bit more."

Anonymous, MN (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"The noise level is unsatisfactory. Too much outside noise (wind, tires, etc.) is present. Better sound insulation would be an improvement."

Anonymous, OR (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Comfortable interior for a 2003 vehicle."

Anonymous, ON (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"road noise is rather loud when driving at highway speeds."

E A., FL (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"This 15 years old vehicle is the best I've ever had in every way. Seats are comfortable, little noise and ride is smooth with enough pep to get off the line in a hurry."

Anonymous, ON (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"My wife finds the seats very comfortable"

Anonymous, CT (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"The A/C stopped working - in Florida - in the summer. But internet searches provided me with the troubleshooting tips I needed to find a bad relay which I replaced myself at the cost of < $10 for the part."

KEN S., FL (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Has the best climate control of any car I've ever owned."

CARL M., OH (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"I'm very short. This model of Corolla, in the top trim line, has a driver's seat that can be raised vertically - this is separate from the control that brings the seat forward. So I can have a good, clear sightline, without having to be too close to the steering wheel and its airbag. Toyota has eliminated this feature from newer Corollas. I hope they reinstate it before I need to buy my next car."

Anonymous, MN (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"The cab does not appear to be insulated enough against road noise."

Anonymous, MI (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"The car rides very well. It handles well but I have to drive gingerly because you can feel every bump in the road. I have managed to keep all of my hubcaps as a result."

MARJORIE R., PA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Gives a comfortable ride with low noise level."

ROBERT S., ME (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"I find road noise to be excessive."

EDWARD S., NY (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"road noise high"

Anonymous, CA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Seats and room are not great for a large person."

Anonymous, FL (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Awesome comfort regarding seats and climate control, but it is not super quiet inside."

Z K., AZ (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"It is better than expected in all areas"

Anonymous, CA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"my wife finds the seats comfortable"

WALTER S., CT (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Passengers complain of rear seat discomfort, especially middle rear seat, especially over longer distances."

ARLEN B., OR (2003 Toyota Corolla)

Value

Did you get what you wanted relative to the price you paid?

What Owners Say

"this is the best car I have ever owned as far as getting a quality vehicle. I have never had any expense yet as far as repairs other than oil changes, a new battery, new brakes & tires"

Anonymous, AB (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"We haven't hardly spent any money on this car since purchased new. Great value for money."

John S., ON (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Only standard maintenance required over the last 14 years of ownership."

David L., ON (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Great mileage;still looks good after 15 years;a pleasure to drive"

Anonymous, NY (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Easy to park in small places. Good fuel economy and high reliability."

Anonymous, WI (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Car is 14 years old and repairs have been limited to the routine, ( tires, brakes, muffler ). Thats why I have kept this car."

Anonymous, CT (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"reliable;few problems since owned (july,2002);gas mileage consistently good ;easy to parallel park"

N K., SC (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"worth every penny"

Anonymous, CA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Reliable transportation with good gas mileage"

Eric M., CA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Worth it. No major repairs yet, just routine tune-ups and maintenance. This car has zero luxuries, but it is worth it for the low cost and expected lifetime of this car. It is the best value I have ever gotten out of a car."

Anonymous, NJ (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"High value."

Royace P., IL (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"runs great with very low operating costs"

Anonymous, CA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"$17,000 for almost 17 years and 93K miles, and it's still going strong! Never any significant problems! I could easily go another two years, probably five, maybe even another ten, before I start learning of problems! This is how I define value!"

Howard H., WA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"ONce I got the brake and exhaust system fixed, the car was in such good shape, the mechanic said if I bought a new car, he would be happy to buy mine."

Anonymous, NY (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Runs great with very low operating costs"

Anonymous, CA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"I got my moneys worth when I bought this car new in 2003 as far as repairs I replaced muffler & had brakes repaired. I do not drive my car hard I don't baby it either. I would buy another corolla used when necessary cause I do not to pay high sales tax on new car"

Martin W., MA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Good price, good value, one of the best cars ever owned."

John C., AL (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Great it's what we could afford in 2003. It was a smart. We feel it will out live us."

Anonymous, AZ (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"I certainly didn't expect to have this car on the road since June 2002 (16 years) and have put this many miles on it. Only normal maintenance for a car this age and no recurring problems. Hopefully, they still make 'em like they used to!"

Anonymous, NY (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"This car is OLD but handles like new. We have had no serious maintenance issues."

David O., FL (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Exceptional reliability; 16 years and it still looks and feels new to me and it's just as peppy as the day I drove it home."

Susan T., OH (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"I have drives it 15 years with few repairs necessary. It has been dependable."

Anonymous, MA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Toyota Corolla is a long lasting car. I've had two now that have covered the last 30 years."

Dona R., CA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"With 14 years this car shows no decline in driving experience and has required only minor maintenance such as air filter replacement."

Fred F., NJ (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"No issues other than routine maintenance on this 16 year old Corolla, and the cost of routine maintenance is very reasonable."

Anonymous, BC (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"The car is 16 years old and is a pleasure to drive. Good mpg and good acceleration"

Anonymous, NY (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"This car is very dependable/reliable. Car motor hums as if brand new still. Great MPG and handling / maneuverable. I love a car you can keep for years with great reliability, this makes the car a great value for low cost."

David S., OH (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Very basic ,reliable, inespensive,most “nice to have‿ items were included in the price, pretty high miles accumulated , still functioning well at 15 years old"

Anonymous, MO (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"great value. price was on the low end of new car purchases."

E A., FL (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"This car is over 15 years old - still looks and runs great - that in itself is a tremendous value for the money spent..."

Anonymous, OH (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"This has been a good reliable car."

Anonymous, ON (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"This car gets great gas mileage and with close to 160,000 miles, it has not given us any problems."

Anonymous, AZ (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"excellent purchase"

BOB D., QC (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Our Toyota Corolla had her first breakdown in 8 years. Beside regular maintenance, nothing was disbursed to exception of one break caliper, an 800$ job. Quite an exceptional return on the investment."

DANIEL R., QC (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Fair price but most importantly the car has been practically maintenance free."

TERRY E., TX (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"I paid 5000.00 for this car with 8000 miles. I have owned it 6 years. It now has 100,000 miles. I was thrilled to find out it had a timing chain. Other than routine maintenance, tires, oil changes it has not cost anything. But the air bag recall is a concern."

Anonymous, RI (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Good outside styling & very good mpg."

Anonymous, CA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Having had experience previously with American-made autos, I am amazed that we continue to drive this car month after month for 13 years and it has required very little maintenance other than routine work."

STEPHEN M., AL (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"A 13 year old Corolla still holds its value. Same clutch,new tires though.I've owned three Corolla's. All purchased new and kept for 15 years each. I'll probably sell this one at age 15 and buy another."

Anonymous, WI (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"good value what i paid for it, steady ride, moderate noise level at hwy speed"

HERB L., ON (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"It's value -- it's a 13 year old car that aside from routine maintenance, I've never had to put any money into it. But it is absolutely terrible in the snow."

ROBERT G., NJ (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"it is the best car I ever had"

ALEX H., NB (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"It has been exceptionally reliable, with only annual servicing and battery and tires replaced - and those are all inexpensive thanks to the car being basic."

NEAL W., BC (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Very low maintenance cost. extremely reliable. I take it in to the dealer for preventative maintenance, not necessarily because the vehicle calls for it."

ALLAN A., GA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Car has 350,000+ miles."

KENNETH B., AL (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"GOOD GAS MILEAGE THE BEST I GOT ON A LONG TRIP WAS 47 MPG."

OLIN P., CA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"it is better than expected in all areas"

Anonymous, CA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"This car gets excellent gas mileage - 35 in town, 45 on the highway. And if properly maintained (read: oil changes every 3,000 miles), it just goes forever without problems. It's very comfortable on long trips."

RB W., CO (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Very reliable. AC unit hard to diagnosed to restore to service. Turned out to be blown fuse."

DAVID T., SC (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"The Corolla was exactly what we needed in its class and the price we paid. Had been the best overall car ever owned. No repairs other than normal wear items. Never been in the shop except for airbag warranty repairs."

JACK J., AZ (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"good city and highway mileage, easy to drive, reliable"

SALLY C., CA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"I have had minor repair work, mostly normal oil changes and maintenance, gas mileage is good."

Anonymous, TX (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Still running and running well at 268000 miles."

Anonymous, MI (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Very reliable, good gas mileage, very economical to operate"

BEN M., GA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"I bought this car in 2002 and except for the normal repairs and replacements (brakes, battery, tires, etc.) I have had no problems with it. The car has over 95,000 miles on it and I don't see any reason to get a new car."

CAROL K., PA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"best reliability in a vehicle we have had"

Anonymous, BC (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Air bags are Takata. Otherwise has been a reliable workhorse for 13 years"

Anonymous, ON (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Paid little and it lasts a long time."

Anonymous, QC (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Bought the car Dec. 2002 and other than the recalls, problems have been few and minor."

CARL M., OH (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"It's a good reliable car with few problems. The exhaust system had to be replaced but the dealer wanted $1800. I got a custom exhaust company to do everything for $276."

BOB K., OH (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Again, patience paid off. Took our time and purchased from a private owner who we met and liked. Did our research -carfax and consumer reports. We're able to provide daughter with a reliable car for only 3,000. No car payments! Yahoo."

TONYA B., OH (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"No repairs other than routine maintenance for 12 years. Battery lasted 12 years."

Anonymous, PA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"For $14,000 cash it was the best car I could buy in 2005. I chose well and wisely. I have it serviced as required and suggested and it just keeps on going without problems. I love the car."

Anonymous, OR (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"There's not many better buys on the market than the Corolla, in this category."

DAVE-ANNE C., MN (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"We bought this car new Oct31,2002 and with almost 138,000 miles it is still driving like it was when it was new. All its cost us is gas, tires, brakes, filters and incidentals that all cars need when you keep them. Knock on wood never a major repair. We're buying another Corolla and planning on keeping this one too!"

Anonymous, NY (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"The value of Toyotas cannot be overstated."

T M., GA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"This car has over 300,000 miles on it, and has NEVER broken down; very good value purchase, excellent gas mileage."

MONICA E., MI (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"same as the tacoma"

JAMES W., WA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Quality/Reliability"

Anonymous, ON (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"I have over 256,000 miles with this car. Except for regular engine and brake maintenance and the replacement of something that made loud noises near the engine and the replacement of steel bearings, it has been very reliable. The interior leather and design is much prettier than the exterior suggests."

TONY S., CA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Good price. Little upkeep. Great 2nd car.Keeps going."

ROBERT G., LA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"This car is now 13 years old. It still handles like it was new. Gas mileage remains high, up to 40 mpg on long trips. Maintenance costs are low. Yes, it needs a new paint job and the speakers in the stereo need to be replaced, but I paid $13K for this car 13 years ago. Think I got my monies worth."

SHARON P., CA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Currently have 74,000 miles on car. Value is sub-par usage is low, catalytic converter has failed and must be replaced at owner expense, replacement is nearly have the Kelly Bluebook value of the vehicle. Also, Sunroof and front windows are prone to leaking, damaging seals, interior trim, and carpets. Low quality plastic trim and decorations also prone to breaking and peeling."

GUNNAR S., NC (2003 Toyota Corolla)

Styling

How it looks inside and out

What Owners Say

"Styling was great in 2003, now prefer the new styling over the 2003."

ROBERT S., ME (2003 Toyota Corolla)

"Looks sporty, & decent enough"

Anonymous, CA (2003 Toyota Corolla)

Would you buy this car again?

2003 vehicles
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Percentage of owners who would definitely purchase that same vehicle again. Owner-satisfaction Ratings are determined by the percentage of those who answered "definitely yes" to the question asked by the Consumer Reports Annual Auto Survey "Considering all factors (price, performance, reliability, comfort, enjoyment, etc.), would you get this car if you had to do it all over again?". If we don’t have sufficient data, a similar model might be used to form the owner-satisfaction score.
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