Advertisement

Why ads?
Popular at KBB.com
  • Midsize Sedan Buyer's Guide
  • 10 Best Sedans Under $25,000
  • Compact Car Buyer's Guide
  • 10 Best Luxury Cars Under $35,000
Go

2008 Toyota Corolla

Overview
Share this page
Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?

2008 Toyota Corolla Review

By

Looking for an inexpensive car that offers a lot for the money? Consider the 2008 Toyota Corolla Sedan. While it may be a bit more expensive than some competitors, the Corolla has an exemplary history (38 years to be exact) of quality, longevity and reliability, not to mention a minimal appetite for fuel. Still, some shoppers will inevitably turn to the less-expensive and better-equipped models from Hyundai, Kia and Suzuki. But, buyer beware; for as these cars appear to offer more features and better styling for less money up front, when it comes trade-in time the Corolla owner will be laughing all the way to the bank.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you're looking for a compact sedan with a reputation for reliability, great resale value and good fuel economy, the 2008 Toyota Corolla tops a very short list.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you're looking for a small sedan with cutting-edge styling and a long list of standard features, the Corolla may not be your cup of tea. Those looking for a more stylish interior and the latest high-end options might want to check out the Mazda Mazda3 or Volkswagen Rabbit.

What's New for 2008

No major changes for 2008.

Driving the Corolla

Driving Impressions No matter which trim level you choose, you'll get the same peppy 1.8-liter engine and five-speed manual transmission. Rated at 126 horsepower, the Corolla's engine uses a number of high-tech...

features to help it move quickly while sipping fuel at a miserly pace. Even with the optional four-speed automatic, the Corolla feels relatively quick on level surfaces, though it does struggle a bit in high elevations or with a carload of people onboard. On the road, you'll find the 2008 Toyota Corolla a joy to drive. Its stable suspension returns a smooth ride, yet it's able to negotiate quick maneuvers without any loss of composure. Keep in mind the Corolla is not a sports car, but driven within reason the Corolla will always go where you point it and stop when you tell it to stop.

Auto-Dimming Rearview Mirror
The auto-dimming rearview mirror, optional on the LE grade, includes a built-in compass.

Optional Vehicle Stability Control (VSC)
Perhaps the most important safety feature since the invention of the airbag, VSC can help avoid accidents by keeping the car traveling in its intended direction.

2008 Toyota Corolla Details
2008 Toyota Corolla photo Interior

The 2008 Toyota Corolla touts a beautifully-detailed cabin with firm, supportive seats, grade-A quality plastics and a rear seat that can actually accommodate two adults in relative comfort. As with most cars in this class, the radio and heating controls are placed in the center section for ease of operation, though with the Corolla you may find that operating the radio requires a bit of a reach. There are bins and storage compartments galore, including four separate cup holders.

Exterior

The Corolla features a tall body that raises the bumper height a few inches, a feature that comes in handy when tapping bumpers with today's monster SUVs. The styling is subtle but pleasant. The sporty S model looks the best of the three trims, but offers no additional horsepower or performance enhancements.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The Corolla CE features a 1.8-liter engine, five-speed manual transmission, air conditioning, rear defroster, digital clock, automatic headlamp control, power mirrors, AM/FM stereo with CD, tilt wheel, tachometer and full wheel covers. The S trim adds ground effects, fog lights, six-speaker stereo, red illuminated instruments and chrome accents. The LE adds wood trim, power windows, Optitron instrumentation and remote keyless entry.

Optional Equipment

Options vary by trim and include power windows, power locks, remote keyless entry, four-speed automatic transmission, rear spoiler, alloy wheels, power moonroof, auto-dimming inside mirror, anti-lock brakes (ABS), Vehicle Stability Control (VSC), audio upgrades, front side-impact airbags, front and rear side-curtain airbags and cruise control. There are also a number of dealer and port-installed options that vary in price depending on region.

Under the Hood

The Corolla's 1.8-liter engine remains one of the best in the industry. Though it's no hot rod, there is enough pep under the hood to move the Corolla briskly and the engine's miserly fuel consumption is among the best in this class.

1.8-liter in-line 4
126 horsepower @ 6000 rpm
122 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4200 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 28/37 (manual), 26/35 (automatic)

Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?

2008 Toyota Corolla Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
9.1
Out of 10

Based on 1333 Ratings for the 2003 - 2008 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    9.3/10
    Quality
    9.2/10
  • Reliability
    9.5/10
    Performance
    9.0/10
  • Comfort
    8.8/10
    Styling
    8.9/10

Excellent Little Commuter, even OK for long trips.

By on Saturday, May 02, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 177,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Reliability, fit / finish, MPG, overall qulity"

Cons: "None. Solid car from a one-owner family."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"For the record, while I am the 3rd owner, I KNOW this car. My aunt was the original owner, my mom was the second and I am now the third. I know it has been maintained, but not religiously (i.e. regular oil changes but 6K intervals instead of 3K etcetera)... I have had this car for 4 years now and I use it regularly as my daily commuter. I still get a solid 30 MPG combined driving. I also have used it for multiple road trips with a family of 4 between CO / MO and between CO / AZ. While not nearly as comfortable as my Acura MDX, no trip was uncomfortable... The reliability has been incredible. The only road related issue was shortly after I bought it from my mom and we went from CO to AZ for a family vacation... Well, right before Crater Monument in AZ, the A/C slowed WAY down, almost to the point on not working. We enjoyed Crater Monument but we were lucky to find a shop right off the highway in Flagstaff open and they discovered that A), the interior air filter had never been changed (incredibly restricting air flow), and B), the A/C freon needed recharging. 90 minutes and $120 later, we were on our way, cool as cucumbers... Was that a design or reliability issue? NO! It was a mom and an aunt driving a car in AZ and CO heat / cold without ever changing cabin air filter, thus placing MUCH added pressure on AC unit. Is this a super comfy car? Well, no. That said, it's certainly not uncomfortable; its utilitarian. Its more comfy (both interior and ride) than my wife's '07 Honda Fit and my 2000 F-250 Super Duty, but its not nearly as comfy as my '03 Acura MDX, but hey, its not designed to be. Exterior has a little paint sealer flaking, but for its age and its lifetime in AZ / CO, that is to be expected. Considering it was never garaged until I purchased it, its actually pretty impressive. Interior? Effective, clean, comfy and QUALITY... This car has ZERO rattles, ZERO defects and is as quiet today as it was 11 years ago. Fantastic. While I LOVE Honda and Acura, I will submit that my experience leads me to believe that Toyota has a slight interior quality edge. No black eye for Honda, but Toyota's have (for me) been a little more solid that Honda's in my experience. Final summary: Excellent car. My son will be driving it in 3 years (unless I give him the MDX), MPG fantastic, reliability is bullet proof, comfort is good, fit and finish is excellent, interior is clean, simple and easy... Driving attitude is vanilla but I mean that as a compliment. I mean, its a Corolla not a 911 4S or BMW 5, you know? I would highly recommend this little car for commuting, running kids to kung fu / gymnastics, grocery getting and mid-distance (900-1200 miles) family travel. Great little car."

1 person out of 1 found this review helpful

Very Reliable! Car will outlast you!

By on Wednesday, April 29, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 160,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "great gas mileage, dependable, low maintenance"

Cons: "No cons! Would have loved a multi-disk CD changer."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I have been having my 2008 Toyota Corolla since May 2009. It was bought with 40,000 miles on it. This car has been very dependable and has never given me any major problems in the 6 years that I have had it. It is great on gas mileage. I have only had to keep up with maintenance such as oil changes, tires, one new battery, new front brakes as needed. It has never fallen dead on me, and now has over 160,000 miles on it. It is still rolling, even after multiple 10 hour road trips, and lots of driving. I am going to keep this car even when I get another, and I highly recommend it to anyone. My cousin bought a new Toyota Corolla recently after my recommendation, and she loves hers as well."

1 person out of 1 found this review helpful

very nice dependable car with low mileage

By on Thursday, April 23, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 50,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "A zippy car with low miles"

Cons: "not much leg room in the back passenger seats."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I have owned this car for 8 yrs. and only put 27,000 easy miles. It is in excellent condition in my opinion and very clean. Non-smoker! If you want a dependable new looking low mileage car this is the one!"

Always needing coil packs and spark plugs

By on Monday, April 20, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 120,000

10 6.0
overall rating 6 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
6/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
2/10
Quality
4/10
Performance
4/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
7/10

Pros: "great gas mileage (better than some hybrids)"

Cons: "coil packs replaced every 6 months, small"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 3

"We have had to replace the coil packs every six months since we got it. None of the mechanics we've been to know why. Although, they do say our car is the only Corolla they've seen require this many coil pack replacements. Other than that, we love the gas mileage. It is roomier than most small cars. Well thought out interior, even in our no bells or whistles car. Never a problem with the heat or air. Good for a small family if you can manage to buy one that doesn't need this many coil packs. By the way, there are 4 coil packs at 100 dollars a piece and when one goes out they all need to be replaced. So, yeah, good luck!"

3 people out of 3 found this review helpful

best car ever! Dependable.

By on Saturday, March 14, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 75,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "reliable, good gas mileage"

Cons: "headrests block my view"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Bought this car new in Oct. 2003. Just recently replaced water pump. My choice of new tires about 2 years ago. Otherwise only cost is regular service. Have had no other repairs. Love this car! Like the back seats that fold forward for hauling lumber, etc. I like the automatic windows and door lock remote. The space in the trunk is great. The only "minus" that I can think of is because I am only 5 ft. tall, the headrests for passengers block my view and since I rarely have riders I had to remove all but the driver's. 4 family members & 3 friends have bought Toyota's after seeing and/or driving mine! I will ALWAYS drive a Toyota Corolla! Even in winter starts with first try. This car will be mine as long as it stays this reliable. It's doing great, being eleven and a half years since I bought it."

7 people out of 8 found this review helpful

Outstanding automobile

By on Monday, March 09, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 150,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "reliability and durability. beast."

Cons: "interior breaks easily"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"beast. experienced every kind of conditions California has to offer among various adventures through the western coast."

5 people out of 7 found this review helpful

Share this page

Advertisement

Why ads?
Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?