Last post on Sep 10, 2013 at 11:49 AM
You are in the Toyota Corolla
What is this discussion about?
Toyota Corolla, Steering, Sedan
#537 of 667 2007 Santa Fe vs. 2010 Corolla Steering
Dec 19, 2010 (11:54 pm)
I am fully aware that it's an apples to oranges comparison, and can no way to be on the same scale. But, since these are the two cars I drive regularly, here's my impression on the EPS issue.
The 2007 Santa Fe 4WD I drive for work, long distance usually, has a classic power steering. It is quite "stiff", needs force to be steered, and you feel the road very intimately. The upside is that you don't veer in the lane. The downside is that your arms get tired pretty quickly as little corrections due to road pattern change require significant force, and non-smooth road surface keeps vibrating the hands severely.
By comparison, the 2010 Corolla that I bought for personal use about a month ago, and which i drive 3-4 days a week medium distance has a "light" steering. The upside is that I can effortlessly steer the car using nearly zero force, and little corrections on the road take no energy at all. I hardly feel the road through the steering, no matter how rough it is, and I like it this way. The downside is that even little tugs on the steering moves th ecar, and I dare not drive it using one hand even on a long straight road, as I comfortably do with the Santa Fe.
Here is my *guess* about what's happening. The motor controlled Corolla EPS is meant to make driving physically effortless. But no matter how steady hands you have, you inadvertently keep turning the steering a little with minimal force, and then need to correct for that, and out of habit from old car feel, you'd over-correct by using too much force.
Now, while I like the Santa Fe's stability, I love that the Corolla does not leave my hand sore after every ride longer than 10 miles. While it is true that the Corolla EPS does not feel natural, I am loving the ease of driving it. In my personal opinion, the hydrolic to full-electric switch is a progress. But Toyota will do better to offer the hydrolic steering as an option, so that those who want old-style steering can get it.
Or may be, the car can have an easy to use "tuner", using which each driver can pick how stiff they want their steering to be? It seems that all future hybrids / electric cars are going to come with a engine volume control, to choose how loud they want to make the engine noise. Then why for a steering stiffness control as well?
#538 of 667 Re: 2007 Santa Fe vs. 2010 Corolla Steering [shouravv]
Dec 20, 2010 (3:34 am)
You have some very good ideas and suggestions I really like, that would please all drivers’ steering taste. I would remind all drivers that “natural” is just what we’ve become used to having all these years, it’s not really “natural” it’s just the past standard as it’s all we had.
#539 of 667 Re: 2007 Santa Fe vs. 2010 Corolla Steering [terceltom]
Dec 20, 2010 (5:54 am)
"Natural" would refer to steering in its unaltered state, the fewest barriers between the driver's hands and the road.
"Normal" would be the standard everyone is using (and thankfully it isn't like the Corolla). I know tom wasn't speaking about the Santa Fe, but I'll reply here: my fiancee has an '07 Santa Fe GLS, and it's steering is quite nice. Relatively numb, and too light, but not so light that it doesn't know straight-ahead.
#540 of 667 Re: 2007 Santa Fe vs. 2010 Corolla Steering [thegraduate]
Dec 20, 2010 (6:30 am)
Well how in the world would you know if “unaltered steering feel”, is the old manual steering feel or the new EPS steering feel? Perhaps the steering feel your trying to describe is “most common” but not necessarily “natural”.
#541 of 667 Re: 2007 Santa Fe vs. 2010 Corolla Steering [shouravv]
Dec 21, 2010 (12:28 am)
As someone that has had the issue and took it to the dealer for the TSB fix I can assure you I do not/did not hold my hand more or less steady than I did when I was having the ECU (Electronic Control Unit that is the 'brains' for EPS) issue.
I completely agree w/ your assessment of the corolla feel, but at the same time I do not think you had one that had the issue.
Do you think actions speak louder than words?
When I first went in I was told - it's the alignment, tire pressure, crown in the road or I gotta get used to it. I did not believe that for one second. I have driven cars out of alignment, low and high tire pressure, on extremely crowned roads and I have gotten used to a variety of steering systems before. The kicker w/ this issue is that is only rears it's ugly head when you start to hit 40+ MPH. If it were any of the other issues I was told I would have noticed them at lower speeds as well as at higher speeds. I as well as my two gear-head brothers that drove/inspected it all suspected it was ECU-related.
However, a few months later out comes the TSB. Well, when I took it in (with a print out of the TSB) for the fix I let the service manager purposely NOT KNOW I KNEW. So, I go thru the schpell of telling him what it does and when it does it (Which they already had records of by that time). Mind you, I was very civil and polite each and every time I went in. Yet seriously, this guy (like the others before) looks and me and talks to me like I am a doofus or a child or in the vein of this can't possible be in such a manner as I describe.
As soon as he said we'll take a look at it and call you (like all the previous times before) I said oh yeah - Here is a TSB on it that may help you and here is my case # w/ corporate. From this point on the service managers mannerisms changed in a way I think you can deduce... And he never said he was unaware of the TSB or acted like he hadn't heard. It was kinda like OK you gave me the super double secret hand shake so....
Also, keep in mind the car had been driven by toyota three times before and they 'could not replicate the issue'. Yet, with nothing done to the car except the print-out of the TSB it was miraculously diagnosed that go around. Things that make you go hmmmmm........
Trust me when I say- you'd notice it like it was the difference between day and nite if you had one w/ the issue.
I am pleased to say that since I had the TSB applied to my car in SEP '10 it seems normal now.
#542 of 667 Re: 2007 Santa Fe vs. 2010 Corolla Steering [sjarea]
Dec 21, 2010 (2:55 am)
Just out of curiosity, sjarea, what *exact* difference do you feel after the EPS computer TSB fix? Do the steering feel heavier / stiffer like hydrolic ones all the time, or is it just better at staying centered once you straighten the wheels and speed up?
Also, do you happen to know if your EPS computer assembly got replaced or reprogrammed?
#543 of 667 Re: 2007 Santa Fe vs. 2010 Corolla Steering [sjarea]
Dec 21, 2010 (4:54 am)
I'm glad you were able to get your steering to your liking. I agree with your sumation of shouravv's assesment. I was also very fortunate as to not have the EPS steering problem when I purchased my 2009 new Corolla. Although many, many 2009, 2010 Corolla owners acused me of being a Toyota rep. or just being plain crazy or lying because I defended my car. I'm glad you at least acknowledge that some never even had this steering issue in their cars to start with.
#544 of 667 Re: 2007 Santa Fe vs. 2010 Corolla Steering [terceltom]
Dec 21, 2010 (5:46 am)
Yes, I'm referring to manual steering. It couldn't be the Corolla's new EPS feel, because it has no feel at all.
#545 of 667 Re: Guess what? Steering issue! [pekelvr]
Dec 21, 2010 (7:22 am)
I bought a Corolla for my daughter and after the first 2 months she refused to drive it .
I lived for a year with phone calls to Toyota Customer Service and bringing the Corolla from dealer to dealer (we managed to put 3 thousand miles on the car in 1.5 years, everyone was afraid of driving it).
Dealers acknowledged there was a problem, but Toyota told them and me that the car was designed to drive like that.
I started Lemon Law proceedings with my state attorney general and Toyota referred me to "National Center for Dispute Settlement" a completely useless company. NCDS concluded without seing my car, that the car was designed to drive like that (veer from lane to lane).
My attorney general office made an appointment to meet with me and gave Toyota one last chance to drive the car. This time Toyota took it seriously drove the car and made an offer to buy the car for full price I paid, plus loan interest, minus 12 cents per mile.
Even after we reached an agreement the customer service people decided that they wanted to pay only the loan portion and not the down payment. They claimed it was because they had no proof I had given a down payment. My bank came to the rescue and for a fee gave me a copy of the canceled check.
My 2 lessons learned were: 1) Always pay the down payment with a check and keep a copy, and 2) After 5 Toyotas, I know own a Honda Accord.
If you need to find help look for Lemon Law in your state. This is Florida's http://www.800helpfla.com/lemonlaw.html. You have 2 years from purchase to do it or loose your rights.
#546 of 667 Re: Guess what? Steering issue! [ed_accord]
Dec 21, 2010 (9:21 am)
Glad it finally worked out for you in the long run. I hope you have much better luck with your new Honda.