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Basic information about my car:
1991 Toyota Corolla Seg AE101
Reasons why I bought this car(purpose):
I was and am driving a 2012 Proton Preve 1.6 CFE. In love with motorsports and spirited driving i found that the Proton Preve and its CVT gearbox was too slugish and could not take the abuse that i have put it through. I was looking for a lightweight, reliable, high reving car that i could take onto the back roads and track. I considered many options like the Proton Satria (4g92 Mivec), Honda Civic (b16a) and the Honda Accord (H22A). I understand that in terms of horsepower, the 4age pales in comparison to the Vtec and Mivec engines. However, being an Initial D fan, the childhood appeal to the roaring 4age 20V somewhat drew me closer. All the above engines sound good as I had the opportunity to try them out but yes i know, Initial D. I wanted a car which I use as a project car to work on during my free time and at the same time give me that "driver feel".
Car selection process
- I have a budget of: RM20,000.00 (to buy and mod). Being a project car, I kinda over shot that budget with the mods. By alot. But what do you know, a project is never completed.
- Models that I have considered include: Proton Satria (4g92 Mivec), Honda Civic (b16a) and the Honda Accord (H22A)
Reasons why I chose this car:
I test drove multiple Corolla SEGs with both the blacktop and the silvertop. Most of them were in a very beaten up condition despite the owners claiming it to be in a relative drivable condition. I then came across this particular SEG with the 4age 20V Silvertop with a decent condition and relatively cheap price as the market was cheap during the 1st MCO. I didnt mind it being a silvertop as it had beefier internals which hopefully would take more abuse. I purchased the car around December 2020.
My average fuel consumption is: 10 km/l
Although the car was not in a bad shape I just somewhat felt the need to start afresh after a month of driving. Hence, since I purchased the car, I have done few changes to suit my needs:
1) replace all the pumps, pulleys and radiator;
2) complete rebuild and balanced engine;
3) lightweight flywheel;
5) stripped interior;
6) short shifter;
7) Steering wheel; and
Planning to upgrade the brakes and seats for a better feel in the ride but it smart not to splurge too much at one go. Although alot still needs to be done but thus far it has given me the satisfaction I need. It just something about being able to rev up to 8,000 RPM in a lightweight manual car that excites me. Of course I would lose out to almost all modern cars but that "driver feel" is something i dont think i would be able to feel in a modern car.
Pros and Cons
Pros of my car
1) it revs up to 8,000 RPM;
2) it has a manual transmission;
3) it give relatively good fuel consumption (for a 40 Liter tank pumped on Ron 97 or above to prevent engine knock, I am able to run the car for more than 400km with a decently spirited driving. If i were to granny shift it i think i can drive further). Note that my Proton Preve only gives me 300km on a full 50L tank.
4) according to Toyota, the 1.6 4age 20V makes around 160hp at the crank (stock). Although it doesnt sound like alot compare to lets say a Honda Civic FC, but for a car that weighs around 1.100 kg, thats not too bad.
5) handles quite well through the b roads.
6) the individual throttle bodies give very instant throttle response.
1) the car being stripped, is very noisy. You can hear the rocks and gravels of the road. bearable for a weekend car but not for daily use.
2) no power windows. yes the car uses the conventional roll up windows.
3) no air conditioning. its still there but doesnt work that well.
4) no radio. But you dont really need one when u have the tune of the 20 Valve. 5) Family calls it an uncle car.
Total Score: 4
Quality & Features: 1
Ride comfort: 1
Fuel Economy: 5
Price & cost: 2
Although not an AE86 but driving this Corolla Seg gives me something of my childhood. You can help but to smile everytime you change gears and hearing the revs match when you downshift. Driving this car is not so much of being the fastest. It is more of how do you feel driving and what the car makes you feel driving it. It makes me happy. Smiling with every gear change.
Now during the covid era I have not had the opportunity to take this car far or on the track yet. Maybe perhaps in the near future. Notwithstanding the unavailability of such, I do drive it around as a weekend car, responsibly (emphasis added). Never failed to put a huge smile on my face.
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