10 February 2016
The least reliable car iv ever owned is not what you normally expect from Toyota but that's what i got. Bought the car at 4 years old with 33k and full dealer service history thought id have no problems so long as it was serviced on time but i was very wrong! After less than a year and 6000 miles the engine was wrecked and needed a rebuild (£1900) due to oil starvation. This was partly my fault as i obviously hadn't checked the oil level enough but i had checked it approx 2 months before and it was fine id assumed with only doing low mileage every few months would be ok! Lesson learned! Apparently high oil consumption on the early cars can happen due to failing piston rings so not great as this can also ruin the cat and the engine when the cat disintegrates. Other issues where a sticking radio ariel, water/condensation in the tail lights and headlights, a sticking rear brake caliper, easily blocked drains off the roof behind the seats causing water to slosh around behind them, badly corroding alloys, paint flaking off around the sills, faulty lamba sensor (£109 just for the part) oh and the radio was a crap thing that looked like it came from the decade before! Faults aside i really liked the car when it worked pin sharp handling and good performance with low running costs make a fun car if very impractical! Wouldn't say don't get one if you fancy one just make sure to check your oil every week!
Submitted: 2014-06-06 | ID: 97071
I totally love this car, it’s the best and most fun car I have ever had. I bought it with 35,000 miles on the clock and totally immaculate and I’ve had it for a year and a half now and I can see me owning this car for a long time. The handling is superb and looks great, even better with the roof down.
Submitted: 2014-03-25 | ID: 48243
I bought my Toyota in 2000 it was a 1991 model in red it had 2 lady owners in Ireland and was imported from Japan in 1994. I found it in a garage in Gillingham, Dorset, it had done 138.000 miles and it has never let me down, always starting first time. I have taken it to a lot of classic car shows in the 13 years I have owned it, it really is "the Japanese Ferrari". The performance is quite awesome it developes 300 bhp with a top speed of 160mph and is a lot cheaper to run and buy than a Ferrari and it has the look, which is fantastic. It always puts a big smile on my face when I drive it. Best wishes to all MR2 owners.
Responses to this review
That’s nice to hear about a 1991 MR2. I owned a 2004 MR2 and loved every moment of it. Recently totaled it in an accident (not my fault--I loved that car toooooo much), and am looking for a replacement - from United States of America
Submitted: 2013-03-19 | ID: 48239
I’ve had my 2004 MR2 for just over a year now and had test driven mine at the tail end of the snow last year. I must have been mad, but hey it had to be done and I was impressed with the handling; it’s very precise on the corners and has an easy gear shift and very smooth drive. It also has a super sexy shape and looks good. I absolutely love everything about it and it’s very reliable. Given the fact I’ve always had a Celica mk3 (built like a tank until it went to scrapheap heaven ) I was sold on the MR2. It can catch you unware in wet and icy weather if you’re not careful so it may not be for the faint hearted. But like any car, treat it with respect and you will be driving the dream! And oh, I’ve managed to get 12 supermarket shopping bags in without a passenger, but remember to put seatbelt on the passenger seat or your be driving to the serenade of the beeping! :-)
Submitted: 2012-02-13 | ID: 48241
I collect my MR2 limited edition Red on Friday this week. I have test driven it 3 times and I’m very impressed. I have a 2.0L Peugeot 307 convertible. Compared to that the MR2 goes like you know what off a stick! Even though its 1.8. its more fun and £60 cheaper on insurance! Let’s hope the same goes for the fuel. Will keep you informed of my opinions after I’ve had it a while. Before I saw this one MR2s didn’t even cross my mind I was lookin at MX5 or Audi TTs, so glad this was sat at the garage waiting for me! Happy motoring everyone.
Submitted: 2011-08-03 | ID: 48242
I just bought an MR2 a couple of weeks ago on a whim. 39000 miles on the clock and what a beaut she is. The handling is superb and the engine sounds great at 5000 rpm. The MR2 is what driving should be like. The car is comfortable on the firm side. A basic stereo works just fine, who needs a fantastic stereo with the roof down? This car reminds me of the days when cars were fun; Mk 2 Golf GTI, the old Mini Cooper etc. Yep you’ve guessed I’m in my 50’s. I chose the car for its looks, driver involvement and performance , I love it to pieces. It did cost me my bike leathers (now gone to charity) and my wife’s new kitchen has been put on hold, but hey, what a small price to pay for such a brilliant car?
Submitted: 2011-07-16 | ID: 48236
I have a 2005 MR2 and love it to bits. Its’ the second one that I’ve had. Ok, there’s not a lot of shopping space, but what’s up with online shopping/home delivery ?? Having said that, we often go away for long weekends in mine and there’s enough space for 2 holdalls behind the seats and boots etc under the bonnet, you just have to learn to travel a bit lighter! In most situations this car is an absolute pleasure to drive, but you do have to remember it’s a rear wheel drive and extremely light; they can and do slide at the back end quite unexpectedly particularly in bad weather. However, most serious situations can be avoided by driving sensibly. I haven’t had any major problems with either of mine, but the oxygen sensors needed replacing on both at about 25k miles. It’s important to get those sorted straight away to avoid damage to the catalytic converter which is a BIG expense. One other annoyance is that the rear side panels tend to fill up with water; it’s supposed to drain out underneath, but the drain holes do block up quite easily, which then means a fair bit of fiddling around to remove the grilles on the side to unblock the drainage holes. The most annoying thing about this car? well, un-necessary beeping/alarms/whatever you want to call them. It beeps if you leave the key in with the door open, it beeps if you use reverse gear, and it beeps if you put a shopping bag on the passenger seat and don’t fasten the seat belt. But would I get rid of it because of the beeps? certainly not :-) The best thing about this car? its fun :-) Hope that helped!
Responses to this review
Do not even think about driving it in icy. I wrote off mine going up hill on the M25 in January 2010. I only knew it was very hazardous about five minutes before hand and was shocked that there was no gritting or illuminated signs. So I slowed to about 30mph but soon felt the rear right let go sending me to the right barrier, I steered to the left at which point I started skating to the inside left barrier. I hit the barrier which then spun me back onto the middle lane. A braking Land Rover Discovery then hit me head on at about 25mph. I was totally unharmed and the front crumple zones did their job but the airbag did not deploy. Rear wheel drive, mid engine, low weight and going uphill meant that front grip disappeared. The steering wheel went slack in my hands. So be wary if you have frosty windows when you set off. However I bought an identical model six weeks later. Still a great car on balance - Roger Fitch from London
Submitted: 2011-01-11 | ID: 48237
I have had mine just over 2 years. In that time I have had brake discs replaced and a full set of Toyo’s fitted which improved it greatly. It only let me down once, when the battery died on me, other than that, trouble free, joyful motoring. If you are thinking of getting one go for one with the hard-top which will cost more, but you will be grateful for it in the winter months: it also stiffens the car a bit and makes it a tauter drive wheras you do notice a bit of chassis flex at speeds with the roof off and top down. The only real word of warning is to treat it with respect in the wet, ’cos like all rear wheel drive cars it can bite you in the ass if you get too enthusiastic. I don’t know why people moan about the standard stereo, mine sounds fine and its plenty loud enough for anyone to destroy their hearing. It’s relatively cheap to insure, good on fuel (for a sports car), reasonable service costs but with the bonus of 10K intervals!! I think it’s one of the most attractive roadsters out there. Pose factor is high - and people regularly let you out at junctions, which doesn’t seem to happen a lot to BMW or Porsche drivers. Some people call this the poor man’s Boxter, which I do get, but honestly I would rather have the MR2 because you get a HUGE amount of bang for your buck, without the cost disadvantages or the resentment that other road users seem to dish out to more expensive marques. A fabulous little car. Who can knock it? It’s fast, good looking, reasonable to run, handles great and puts a huge grin on your face.
Submitted: 2010-01-13 | ID: 48235
Have had the car for two years now, a replacement for my Mk1. All I can say is that the car is fantastic: great handling; reliable; good service from the dealers and with the turbo you get that shove in the back performance. It is capable of keeping up with most performance cars on the road today.
Responses to this review
The Mk3 has no turbo. It has one engine option, the normally aspirated 1.8 vvti - Justin Hewitt from London
There is a turbo version . . . 2006 - from England
Submitted: 2008-09-15 | ID: 48245
The only reason I can’t give my ’2 5/5 is that I would like the TTE turbo option! I have had my car for 2 years and bought used with 17k on the clock. There is an issue on the earlier cars with the cats in the manifold falling apart but this was solved by Toyota with the facelift (fog light) model in 2003. De-catted manifolds are cheap to buy and fit for peace of mind though. So far I have reached 35k and have had a new water pump new discs and finally replaced the original Bridgestone tyres that came with the car when I bought it. I recommend straying from the standard tyre size as it is an odd size that means you pay for the nose for tyres to match original spec. You can get a set of Toyota’s for a reasonable £250 rather than paying £180 just for the rears in Bridgestone OE format! I have fitted a luggage rack which helped when I took a large suitcase on holiday and I have removed the doors to the luggage compartment for easier access behind the seats. Removing the spare wheel gives lots of extra space but makes the front light so be careful if you decide to use this as your ’boot’ I regularly get 40mpg from my 6 speed ’2 and have never dropped below 36mpg even when I tried! I have once managed to get the 44mpg as listed in the sales brochure! Insurance is cheap and tax is relatively low compared to other sports cars due to Toyota’s ultra low emissions pledge when they revised the car in 2003. Hard tops only come with air con models so if you aren’t lucky enough to have a hard roof with yours you are looking at anything from £300-£800 for a lid on eBay and the fitting kit will set you back £150 from Toyota. Watch for cars that have been modified, thrashed and then put back to standard for sale. Also for track day damage. Servicing is every 10k and is reasonable. The standard stereo is rubbish even with the £1000 CD option - replace it as soon as you can! I researched the MX5, S2000, VX220, Z3, MGF etc before buying my MR2 and I am very happy with my choice. :)
Submitted: 2008-08-26 | ID: 48244
Without a doubt the MR2 is one of the best cars I’ve ever driven. Almost everything about this car is great. The handling is awesome, the steering razor sharp. Obviously one of the reasons for buying a car like this is the pose factor ; ) Its contemporaries like the MX-5 can’t hold a candle to it as the car just oozes style and is far less of a common site. Ok, it’s not perfect. The load space is appalling, practically non-existent and the suspension can be so firm you can feel every pebble you drive over. However there are good reasons for this: to keep the weight almost 50/50 and to allow for better handling. A true driver’s car. All in all Toyota have created a genuinely excellent two seater sports car that you can buy for under £10,000 second hand and for that they should be applauded.
Submitted: 2008-01-09 | ID: 48248
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Have recently just a bought this MR2 in pristine condition with just under 22,000 on the clock and she’s a beaut! Such a great car to drive, so much fun. Completely impractical if you want to do the weekly shop of course, which means the wife doesn’t get to use it! Not too pricey to run and these cars really do hold their value well.
Responses to this review
In reponse to Thom’s note about shopping, well I have to mention that I managed to get 10 shopping bags of food in my MR2 (careful packing of course!!) and didnt even use the space in the bonnet. So ladies don’t let what seems a lack of shopping space deter you from buying this car, it can be done - Nicki Weaver from Warwickshire
Submitted: 2007-10-31 | ID: 48249
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