Toyota Motor Corporation produces 10 million vehicles each year and yet has built a reputation for bulletproof reliability. This makes Toyotas a favorite among used car buyers. Here are three of Toyota’s most reliable decades-old used cars.
2007-2011 Toyota Camry
RELATED: Do Open Recalls Change a Car’s Trade-in Value?
When website UsedCars.com made a list of the world’s most reliable 10-year-old cars in 2021, the sixth-generation Toyota Camry was a no-brainer. The Camry is a mid-size front-engine sedan with FWD. Its base engine was a reliable 2.4-liter I4. But you can also opt for a 3.5-liter V6 to increase your horsepower from 179 to 268 hp. Both powertrains proved reliable, as did the Camry Hybrid.
This Camry was a bit ahead of its time, with optional touchscreen, navigation, eight-speaker stereo, leather-trimmed heated seats, and even push-button start. The vehicle offered stability control, traction control and electronic brakeforce distribution alongside the standard anti-lock brakes and driver and passenger airbags. Although the 2007-2011 Camry is now a little over a decade old, it’s still worth considering.
2009-2013 Toyota Corolla
RELATED: The GR Corolla is Toyota’s DVD/VCR player
The Corolla is Toyota’s compact sedan. It’s incredibly popular around the world and Toyota has sold more than 50 million cars with this nameplate. This makes the Corolla the most popular vehicle in history and means there are many of these reliable Toyota cars on the used market. A decade ago, Toyota built the 10th generation of its Corolla. The base engine from 2009-2013 was the highly reliable 1.8 liter I4.
Not only did the 10th generation Corolla come with driver and passenger airbags, it actually introduced side airbags both front and rear. There was a performance-oriented 2.4-liter engine that came with sport-tuned suspension in the XRS. Some people even ordered this trim with a manual gearbox. But such a car may have been driven aggressively and therefore needs some maintenance. The I4 with the automatic has probably been treated the kindest.
2009-2014 Toyota Prius
RELATED: Can You Upgrade a Toyota Prius’ Hybrid Battery?
When Toyota first released its Prius, the fuel efficiency of the hybrid caught the world’s attention. But over the years, the Toyota Prius has also proven to be a remarkably reliable used car. The Prius’ electric motor/generator is designed for regenerative braking: it helps slow the car under braking while charging the battery, as well as starting the car from a standstill. As a result, the Prius’ conventional brakes and 1.8-litre I4 engine wear out more slowly than a non-hybrid. The hybrid’s high-voltage battery will eventually wear out, but it often lasts 100,000 or even 150,000 miles. It’s never a bad idea to have a used hybrid inspected by a professional before you buy it.
According to UsedCars.com, one reason the 2009-2014 Prius is so appealing is that Toyota has made an effort to bring the vehicle to market by including a number of standard options. These include a power sunroof, air conditioning, LED lights, 17-inch alloy wheels, a touchscreen with voice-activated navigation and hands-free calling, a four-disc CD player and disc brakes on all four corners. Note that while most Priuses have nickel batteries, Toyota built many of the AWD versions with longer-lasting lithium-ion batteries.
A Toyota with a different name
RELATED: Oldest Cars With Apple Carplay: Find a Used Vehicle That Can Connect to Your iPhone
While these three Toyota sedans achieved excellent reliability scores, you’ll find several alternatives – built by the larger Toyota Motor Company – on the same reliable chassis but with different badges. For example, if you want a Corolla hatchback, consider either the Toyota Matrix or the Scion xB. Likewise, the Lexus ES shares Toyota’s “K” platform with the Toyota Camry.
If you can find one of these relatively low-mileage vehicles, it may have reached its depreciation sweet spot while still having most of its life ahead of it.
RELATED: What’s the best-selling car of all time?