1985 Toyota Corolla required mileage

How many mpg does my corolla 1985 1.6 Gl require?

oh, a trick question? none… it doesn’t require any. LOL
are you asking what the normal MPG should be?


The US EPA says mid to upper 20’s combined city/highway: Gas Mileage of 1985 Toyota Corolla That’s a bit optimistic but based on my own experience owning a 1977 and a 2009 you should be able to get fairly good mileage.

1985 Toyota Corolla ; Compare ; Combined MPG :27. combined. city/highway. MPG . City MPG :24. city. Highway MPG :31. highway. 3.7 gals/ 100 miles

The manual transmission should be able to give you a few MPG extra in city driving compared to the automatic, if that’s what you have, and if driven properly. In my opinion the EPA numbers are kind of a combination of trust of the manufacturer, a possible bit of dishonesty, and assuming the vehicle is driven in the worst way.

There , fixed for you.


Oh shut up. You’ll try to have this removed won’t you, but your edited quote along with your post that was only meant as an insult can stay.

Completely untrue. EPA economy is computed using a complex formula based on several drive cycles and tailpipe emissions with the subject car on a dynamometer. The drive cycles are very conservative and as a result, the fuel economy ratings were way over what the average driver could attain in the real world, hypermilers notwithstanding. For this reason, the estimates were downgraded from these theoretical figures several times over the years so they now come much closer to real-world conditions. YMMV!


The EPA numbers are a means of comparison when choosing a new vehicle. The conditions are identical and based on dynamometer tests. A 2022 Honda Civic 1.5L gets an EPA average of 36 MPG, while a Nissan Sentra 2L gets 32 MPG. That tells us that the Civic gets 12.5% better gas mileage, and that’s what the EPA wants to convey.


Say for instance you drive for hours at a time at 60 MPH on flat roads with cruise control. My car will get 32 MPG doing that since the transmission locks up in 4th gear. The EPA says 26 MPG highway for the automatic and 27 MPG highway for the manual. That’s reasonable since people tend to vary their speed when driving the automatic causing the torque converter to unlock, and there is some stopping in real world traffic before you get to the highway. But if driven properly it gets better. But to get only 27 MPG highway for the manual transmission you would have to drive it quite badly. I don’t think the EPA gives proper credit to what fuel economy a car can achieve if it is properly driven. It would be quite helpful if the EPA published a figure for what a car can achieve at 60 MPH for long periods with no braking or speed variations. When I say that the EPA figures are dishonest, I’m mostly referring to dishonesty by omission.

As cars age carbon builds up in the engine causing the compression ratio and fuel efficiency to go up a little.

Which is why referring to EPA numbers (which have now been revised for older vehicles) to help someone figure out what how much it’s going to cost to drive their car isn’t the best thing. http://www.fuelly.com has real world figures from actual cars, but users on there probably tend to be hypermilers, but that might actually be what this person wants to be.

Here is the Fuelly data for the 85 Corolla: 1985 Toyota Corolla MPG - Actual MPG from 12 1985 Toyota Corolla owners

Such a figure would be rather meaningless for the average driver since few people actually drive that way. The figures are supposed to be estimates of typical fuel economy, not the theorectical maximum. Car & Driver does do a similar test except it is fuel economy at a steady 75 MPH.

How Vehicles Are Tested (fueleconomy.gov)

Data on Cars used for Testing Fuel Economy | US EPA

If you’re a gentle driver, you might get 30mpg combined, imo

I had a 1995 Corolla 1.8 5sp, and I got 37mpg combined, but that was newer technology than a 1985 Corolla

The EPA rates my Outback H-6 at 18 mpg city, 24 mpg highway. I can’t say what my “city” mpg would be because I don’t drive in urban traffic anymore. However, my “around town” gas mileage when running errands in my suburban/rural area is consistently 23-25 mpg, and on a long highway trip, I can eke-out 28-29 mpg.

I guess I’m not an average driver. :wink:

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Woot! Troll fight! Let me grab some popcorn.

Moving along, in my experience you were fortunate. The odd thing when I compare my 1977 and 2009 is that real world mileage didn’t improve. In fact, if anything, it got worse. My 1977 was a model specially intended to boost EPA ratings. It had a tiny 1.2 liter engine and a 5-speed manual and got 28 MPG and change in combined city/highway driving. My 2009 has a 1.8 liter and a 4-speed automatic, and gets 27 or less in similar (but not identical) driving. It’s a much better car in most respects, with niceties like ABS, air bags and A/C, but not when it comes to MPG.

Yes, but doesn’t the 2009 model also have considerably better acceleration than the '77 model?

You grab the popcorn I will get the beer. :laughing:


The EPA’s methodology has been updated a couple times since the early 80’s. In the early 80’s there were some completely asinine claims being made regarding fuel economy . But by 2008, the methodology became much more realistic, and the EPA estimates from that point on are going to be very close to what the average consumer can expect in real life. It’s not hard to beat the the current EPA estimates these days, whereas 40 years ago, it was only possible if your trip was downhill both ways.


As I said, the 2009 is much better in numerous respects. And yes, while it’s no hotrod and I owned the two cars roughly 30 years apart, which does cloud my memory a bit, I seem to recall the 1977 having less pep.

Well, since the OP has not come back and comments have gone off the rails, I will join in.
Had a 2.7 in-line Flathead six, I don’t know how many MPG it got but got about 200 miles per quart of oil, kept the mosquitoes away.

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