It’s a problem we all have to face when deciding on a new commuter car: Do we blow the budge and get something that makes us look and feel good, or must we stick within our means and purchase yet another faceless econobox? Unfortunately for our egos, common sense usually takes over and we end up buying not the twin turbo v6 supercoupe, but the high mpg, low image low-buck sedan.
Toyota didn’t think you should ever again have to apologize for buying an economy car. In fact, the completely redesigned 1991 Toyota Tercel embodied the looks, comfort, and quality of a much more uplevel automobile, but at a price that was exactly the same as the boxmobile it replaced. The 91 Tercel was lighter, faster, roomier, and more powerful than ever before, but retained its traditional miserlike use of fuel.
When Toyota introduced the ’91 model, Toyota took the Tercel to new categories of quality. Few entry-level vehicles exhibited such a high level of refinement. The econocar you didn’t have to apologize for.