1 Jun 1967
In October 1966 Toyota kicked off what was to become the world’s most successful car line. Meaning “crown of a flower”, the Corolla arrived locally in June 1967 to instant acclaim.
Australia was its first export market.
Against its (mostly English) rivals’ heavy, ponderous, post-war engineering, the rear-driven KE10 series’ breezy styling, keen pricing, eager 44kW 1.1-litre four-cylinder engine and sweet-shifting four-speed manual gearshift were a sensation. Local assembly began in 1968.
At the same time, the two-door sedan was joined by a luxury SL variant, a two-door wagon (with an three-speed auto option) and a coupe, the latter also available in SL trim as well as in sporty Sprinter guise.
Flow-through ventilation was amongst minor trim changes introduced in ’69.
The 53kW 3K-engined KE11 series (of 1.2-litre capacity) was introduced in early ’70, featuring better performance and durability and a three-speed auto option on the well-equipped SE sedan. In all 1,171,384 KE10s were produced.
The Road to Recovery podcast series
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