Toyota Starlet (1996–1999)

What's good

S and T reg cars came 15th in 2001 Top Gear / JD Power Customer Satisfaction Survey.

In June 2001 Toyota was rated by Motor Warranty Direct as Britain's 3rd most claim-free used marque.

BMW, Toyota and Ford jointly suffered the fewest breakdowns attended by German ADAC during 2001.

Toyota had fourth lowest average cost in warranty claims for cars up to 10 years old in 2002 Warranty Direct index.

Toyota generally 10th lowest average warranty repair costs in 2003 Warranty Direct Reliability index (index 74.95 v/s lowest 31.93) www.reliabilityindex.co.uk

What to watch out for

'Sporty' SR version not exactly sporty.

May be a government stats quirk, but very high 9 point death rate from accidents in this model.

Now very old for a small, cheap Japanese car.

If a 3-door manual, check that optional PAS has been fitted.

Not much point in buying a used independent import of one of these unless you want air-conditioning and the price is right.

May need a timing belt.

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