Toyota Corolla Levin and Sprinter Trueno

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Toyota Corolla Levin
1983 Toyota Corolla-Levin 01.jpg
1983 Toyota Corolla Levin (AE86)
Also calledToyota Sprinter Trueno
ProductionMarch 1972 – August 2000
Body and chassis
Body style

The Toyota Corolla Levin (Japanese:トヨタ・カローラレビン, Toyota Karōra Rebin) and the Sprinter Trueno (Japanese:トヨタ・スプリンタートレノ, Toyota Supurintā Toreno) are small, almost identical, lightweight, compact sports coupés which were produced by Toyota from 1972 to 2000. The name of this Corolla model was taken from one of the New Zealand venues of the Tasman Series motor races. However Levin in Old English does mean lightning and Trueno in Spanish means thunder. In Japan, the Corolla Levin was exclusive to Toyota Corolla Store locations, and the Sprinter Trueno was exclusive to Toyota Auto Store locations, later renamed Toyota Vista Store in 1980.

TE27 Series (1972–1974)[edit]

1972 Toyota Corolla Levin 1600 (TE27)
Toyota Sprinter Trueno (TE27)

The first Corolla Levin and Sprinter Trueno of early 1972 were the high performance models of Corolla and Sprinter 2 door fastback coupe. They were powered by the 1.6 liter engines mated to a 5 speed manual transmission, borrowed from the Toyota Celica 1600GT. The inspiration came from Toyota manager Geisuke Kubo who wanted to offer something similar to the Alfa Romeo Giula Junior.[1] The Sprinter Trueno J had the 2T-B OHV with twin down draft carburettors. The other Levins and Truenos used the 2T-G (high compression) or 2T-GR (low compression) DOHC engines with two double venturi side draft Mikuni carburettors. Vehicles installed with the 1.6 litre engine obligated Japanese owners to pay more annual road tax.

TE37, TE47, TE51, TE55, TE61, TE62 & TE65 Series (1974–1979)[edit]

1977 Toyota Corolla Coupe 1600 Levin (TE51)
1975 Toyota Corolla Hardtop 1600 Levin (TE37)
1975 Toyota Sprinter Trueno 1600 GT (TE47)

With the second generation of the Levin and Trueno Sprinter there was a clearer difference between the two through design. Though based on the same shell the whole nose design differed totally with the Levin (TE51 and TE55) having an aggressive forward raked design while the Trueno Sprinter (TE47, TE61, TE62 and TE65) had a sleeker and more curved design. In contrast to its predecessor this second generation of Levin and Trueno Sprinter was offered with a much wider array of engines and trim. The Trueno LT grade used the plain 2T engine and the Trueno ST grade used the twin downdraft carburettors 2T-B engine. The Levin and Trueno GT grades used the 2T-G engine with DOHC head from the previous TE27 with 86 kW (115 hp) from two double Mikuni Solex carburettors and later with 82 kW (110 hp) from the 2T-GEU engine with a Bosch K-Jetronic EFI system.

AE71/TE71/TE72/TE75 Series (1979–1983)[edit]

Toyota Corolla Levin (TE71)

Although the sporty Corolla and Sprinter available as 2 door Sedan, 2 door Hardtop, 3 door Coupe, and 3 door Liftback, the Corolla Levin and Sprinter Trueno were only produced as 3 door Coupe (TE71). Trim levels for the Japanese models were Base, S, and GT APEX, all with 2T-G engine. In the United States, the Corolla Levin was sold as SR5 with 1.6 liter 4A-C engine (AE71) and 1.8 liter 3T engine (TE72/75).

AE85/86 Series (1983–1987)[edit]

The American version Corolla SR5 Coupe (AE86)
The European version Corolla Levin 1600 GT Liftback (AE86)
Toyota Sprinter Trueno 3-door (AE86)

In this generation, the Corolla Levin came with fixed rectangular headlights which distinguished it from the Sprinter Trueno with retractable headlights. However, the American Corolla SR5 and GT-S also had retractable headlights the same as Japanese Trueno, but with longer bumpers to meet the US Federal standards.


  • 4A-GEU (16 valve): AE86 GT, GT APEX, GT-V Models
  • 4A-GEC (16 valve): AE86 Corolla GT-S Model
  • 4A-C (8 valve): AE86 SR5 Model
  • 3A-U: AE85 SR, GT Models

AE91/92 Series (1987–1991)[edit]

The Japanese version Corolla Levin 1.6 GT (AE92)
The American version Corolla 1.6 GT-S (AE92)
1987 Toyota Sprinter Trueno 1.6 GT-Z (AE92)

Like the previous generation, the Corolla Levin and Sprinter Trueno have different headlight styles. Again, American Corolla Coupe SR5 and GT-S adopted retractable headlights like the Trueno. This is the last generation of Corolla Coupe in America. The SR5 was powered by 4A-F engine, the GT-S came with high performance 4A-GE engine, while the GT-Z came with a 4A-GZE engine. Earlier GT-Zs were equipped with DLI and an AFM sensor while later versions would change to a MAP, oil squirters on the 4A block and a set of forged pistons.

AE100/101 Series (1991–1995)[edit]

1993–1995 Toyota Corolla Levin (AE101) GT Apex
Toyota Sprinter Trueno GT APEX (AE101)


  • 4A-GE (20v)Silver-Top: GT Apex, GT Models
  • 4A-GZE (Supercharged): GT-Z Model
  • 4A-FE: SJ Model
  • 5A-FE: S Model

AE110/111/112 series (1995–2000)[edit]

1997–2000 Toyota Corolla Levin BZ-R (AE111)
1995 Toyota Corolla Levin BZ-G (AE111)
Toyota Sprinter Trueno XZ (AE111)

Pre Facelift

  • Manufactured from 1995 to 1997

Facelift Model

  • Manufactured from 1997 to 2000


  • 4A-GE (20v )"Black-Top": BZ-V, BZ-G, BZ-R Models
  • 4A-FE: XZ Model
  • 5A-FE: FZ Model

The BZ-R variant featured a 6 speed manual transmission, LSD, bigger front rotors, ABS, improved calipers, a taller rear spoiler and Super Strut Suspension (SS) all of which could be added to the BZ-G and BZ-V models as factory options. Additionally a set of Recaro SR3 (confetti pattern) seats could be installed as a factory option. This is the last series where the Trueno name was used, as the Toyota Sprinter was discontinued, the Corolla Levin continued to be made.

Other uses of "Levin" name[edit]

The name "Corolla Levin" was later revived for the Toyota Auris in Australia and New Zealand, where certain Corolla trim levels have the Levin label.

In China, the sporty model of the Toyota Corolla (E180) and Corolla (E210) with different lamps and bumpers from the regular sedan is called Levin (Chinese: 雷凌/凌尚; pinyin: Léilíng/Língshàng).

See also[edit]