New to Toyota - 2005 Corolla Sportivo!

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Update time, so not long ago I purchased the newest mod to the list. Although when I first saw it in action months earlier I was a little worried but now that issues are sorted I was definitely keen to build further. So with the addition of the new mod, it will give even more benefits from my current mods and any future ones.


The Greddy E-Manage, another piggy back unit that allows control of redline, timing and fueling. Combining this unit with the V-Manage basically gives the full options of a stand alone ECU but they work as a piggy keeping all the nicety's of the standard unit.

Once I got the unit, it was packaged and sent down to Melbourne, where Ed worked his magic with the harness and basically made it a plug and play unit (in the photo above). Ed made the harness, checked it all and put on a tune for my mods along with the final test which showed all was working. 

After receiving the package yesterday afternoon, I was obviously super keen to get it installed. After a confirmation of how to get it installed correctly, I gave it a crack this morning. I basically disconnected the main harness plugs, connected them into the E-Manage harness which connected onto the ECU and had the E-Manage patched in. The install was done and I turned the key to make sure all was working.

Once it started up I noticed there was a sputter and when I revved a little, it sputtered even more and began back firing along with been hesitant to rev. So I turned it off, turned both switches 2 and 3 on which control the advance in ignition and when I started the car, it idled normally again. So it was off for a test drive and the first thing I noticed was the change in responsiveness, it felt even more lively than it did before the install. I drove around more to get the car warm so I could test the new redline but, sadly not all was well.

Once getting above 6200 RPM, the car would immediately began sputtering and not rev anymore. I pulled over and turned switch 3 off as this would reduce the amount of timing and tried again but sadly the same issue was happening.

After a discussion with Ed, we decided it would be easier to send the unit back to him to check over as the parameters set shouldn't change and he believes the issue is been caused but a significant change in the timing parameters. So the increased redline dream is on hold for now but I will be sure to keep you all updated.

More to come.

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Update time.

Not long after my last post, I was driving in to work on the motorway. As I merged from the middle lane to right lane to over take a slower car, my windscreen was hit by a rock or something solid and left me with a small crack right in my field of view. Annoyingly enough, as I was merging the slow car moved over to the left so if I waited half a second longer it wouldn't of happened basically.

So I was left with this for a few weeks.


Luckily it wasn't too bad from other cracks I've seen happen from flying debris. I eventually got on the phone with O'Brien who advised I should bring it around to their head quarters not to far from where I work and have them inspect and check if it can be repaired or if a new windscreen is needed. After an inspection, they confirmed that the crack was repairable and they were able to fit me in before I got into work for the day.

The end result.


Yes, this was taken after the repair. In daylight you can still see a mark from where the crack was which is obviously quite hard to cover up but O'Brien did an excellent job repairing the crack and I've had no issues so far since the repair.

I also decided to take the long weekend off, getting 3 days of leave for 10 days off and received the E-Manage back from Ed a few weeks earlier. I plugged it all back in, did a nicer job of hiding the harness and started it up with no advance but sadly the same issue was happening. Once I added advance timing, it idles perfect and I took it for a spin where I found again that the car doesn't seem to rev passed 6000 RPM without a major rev cut like before. I decided to take it out for now and will wait until Ed comes around to Sydney again so we can have a better look at what's happening together.

After some discussion, we are having suspicions that it may be the lower lift contributing to the issue around 6000 RPM, since that's where my lift point is set on the V-Manage currently. Just something that will be checked this year to hopefully get it fully working.

Other than that, I've still got some plans for some minor additions to come and just keeping the car reliable and as clean as possible.


Of course, I'll keep this all updated.

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Alrighty another update.

No long after my last update it was time for one of the first big cruises for the year, the Toymods Nasho/Kangaroo Valley cruise. Originally I wasn't able to go but when the date was change I was luckily able to attend. There was a nice turn out of cars ranging from KE70s all the way to Supras and turbo Corollas. Although I did get my mate and I lost at one point since I stupidly didn't use my GPS we made it to all the stops and the end at Kangaroo Valley. It was an awesome day out and I discovered a bunch of new roads I have never seen before, which is definitely good for some future cruises with mates.


Surprisingly, the most common model of cars in attendance we Sportivos, an oddity at most of the monthly meets and some other cruises. 

On the way home, I decided to stop by and see Alec since I was out towards his area and went through some back roads I've been through before. Since it was quite deserted I thought it was definitely worth taking some quick pictures.




The last is probably my one of my favourite pictures I've taken, seeing as I only really use my phone and don't get too many with proper cameras.

Recently, I found some nice OBD readers that people had been using in various cars and one just happened to be a Sportivo. I inquired about them and a week later it was in my hands. It's nothing crazy but for the price I really can't complain and the unit is actually quite handy and has a lot of neat features that myself and some of my mates weren't expecting either.


Here's how it sits currently, I hid away the wiring as best as I could behind panels and trim rubber. I currently have RPM, water temperature, ignition timing, volts and intake air temperature and I've also setup the shift light feature which begins around 6000 RPM and an additional light comes on every 500 RPM. I find the unit pretty responsive for an OBD reader after changing a few settings with the system so it's as responsive as possible.

I'll be using it for easier driving and monitoring what's happening as I go along. I'll be doing some research also into the ignition timing that is run to see if future improvements can be made to my tune and for others in the near future. I do highly recommend the Lufi X1 as a nice budget OBD reader with a nice list of outputs shown for various models. 

Other than that, not too much else has happened in the last month. I do have an event I am entering next month which should be a good night out, even if I may be the slowest car entering.

Stay tuned!

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Minor update.

Finally got the chance to catch up with @Blacksheep not too long ago for a drive through Mccarrs Creek Road, not too far from Ku-Ring-Gai Chase. I had never driven on the road before but it was amazingly smooth and had plenty of twisties. Although it's short drive, it's still one of the nicest roads I've driven on in some time.

I got the chance to take some quick pictures when we stopped off near Church Point. We also took turns with Go-Pros driving to get some shots and did some walk around shots with them too, well Blacksheep did of course.





So this week I've got some preparation to do which I will cover in more detail in my next update for the event that I'll be entering. I definitely will be on of the slowest cars there but my mate and I entering are super keen to have a fun night out.

Stay tuned!

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Alrighty update time (Long Post)

So last month was pretty busy for me. I was busy with work and also getting the car prepped for an event to enter. So in the lead up, I made sure everything was in top notch, cleaning the engine bay in mostly hard to reach areas and doing checks all round to make sure everything was in working order. I was planning on doing an oil change prior but decided to do it after the event seeing as it was still in good condition and hadn't even reached 5000kms yet.

The night before, I went to the local car wash and gave the car a good clean and no I definitely didn't use the brush there that's for sure.

Luckily I was on the early shift for work which I had planned and once I got home, I began to strip the car out. Pretty much anything that added weight was removed. I removed most the trim from the boot, removed my sub, rear seats, floor mats and basically anything else I could find that added unnecessary weight.

Once I was done, I was left with this.


The car felt so lively and obviously a lot louder than normal which sounded awesome. I honestly didn't want to put anything back in.

So now to the event, here's a hint.


So with all the prep done, it was time to head out to Sydney Motorsport Park for Roll Racing. I know most of the Sydney, Perth and possibly Queensland ladies and gents may be aware of this event but basically what the idea is that you start off and go to 50 km/h and once you're neck and neck the christmas tree will go green and you have 250 meters to go for it. It's an awesome concept because it takes the pressure off doing a perfect launch and of course possible damage.

Now, I was obviously the slowest car of the night seeing as the cars that attend are basically the top 5% of Sydney's fastest street cars but it was honestly an awesome night out. The variety of cars around was amazing and the other drivers were pretty friendly, probably having a laugh at why I took my Sportivo to be quite honest 😂

I ended up going up against mostly V8 Commodores with a wide range of mods, the closest run being against a modded VE SS wagon which didn't get all to far away from me ( say around 4-5 car lengths or so behind) and also went up against 4 door R34 GTT, turbo charged Datsun 240Z (sounded RB), a turbo DC2 VTi-R, a big single turbo R33 GT-R, a nice single turbo Supra (JZA80) and also went up against the eventual winner of the night, the BYP K swap turbo SW20 MR2.

It was honestly an awesome night out, Alec hopped in for some laps and got some good footage of the cars absolutely destroying me. I was able to get 50 km/h for most runs to go down and ended up always getting around to 145 km/h or so by the finish line which I was actually not expecting. My original guess was around 140 km/h or so max but one or two runs I almost reached 150 km/h which I thought was impressive seeing as it's quite a short distance to run.

I did end up getting some shots on the night, thanks to Bero Photography. I may also upload some videos of the night I got from dashcam but I'll need to see how the quality is first.



For anyone thinking about entering, I'd definitely go for it. I had the slowest car of the night and still had a blast! Especially if you go with some mates, there is a race a mate lane so you can keep racing each other all night.

The following day, I decided since the rear seats were out that I'd give them some leather treatment and clean them up. I took some progress photo's to see how a good clean really clean does wonders. I used the Oakwood leather car pack which I've had for sometime and have used previously.


The base originally


The base after the cleaning solution was applied.


The hydrating solution. Added the top section of the back seat for comparison.


And lastly, the final product for the back seats.

I spent most of the weekend putting everything back in the car and it honestly takes a lot longer to put everything back in compared to taking it out. By Sunday, pretty much everything was back in and the car was back to it's street trim (I don't normally run the spare and tools).

And the most recent news for this month, Ed had flown up last week and was able to setup a new tune. We had to remove the 3 wires that allow the lift point to be changed as I have been doing an on-going investigating for the last few weeks or so trying to figure out the issue. Before I talk about the new tune, here's what was investigated:

- Confirmed essential wiring
- No low lift (turned off via unit) - No issues
- Tried a different unit - Worked perfectly 
- Checked main boards on units - Matched between mine and the second tested
- Tried unit with another tune (MAF voltage vs RPM instead of TPS vs RPM) - Jolting still occurred 
- Test my unit in another car - Same issue follows it.
- Turned off VVT tune via unit - No issues
- Changed jumpers on main board to match other unit - No change 
- Set lift to 7500 - Jolts as soon as lift engages

So after some lengthy investigation, I've since removed the drop lift and have the standard 6200 point now. Ed was able to set an awesome tune with the stock point and it feels awesome to drive regardless, still feeling lively and more powerful than stock. Once I find a new unit which allows lower lift to work, we're hoping to lower it to possibly 5500 RPM or so as the setup should allow for power and torque to be made earlier in the rev range.

As always I'll keep this thread updated. Stay tuned!

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3 hours ago, Squalled said:

so with all the prep done, it was time to head out to Sydney Motorsport Park for Roll Racing.

good stuff ! do you also get the chance to do a 1/4 mile time ? or is it all just roll racing ?

3 hours ago, Squalled said:

probably having a laugh at why I took my Sportivo to be quite honest 😂


theres a blue turbo sportivo that goes there too, do you know of him ? or seen him ? 


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On 7/11/2019 at 12:17 PM, jeffy said:

good stuff ! do you also get the chance to do a 1/4 mile time ? or is it all just roll racing ?


theres a blue turbo sportivo that goes there too, do you know of him ? or seen him ? 


Sadly no times or anything as it's more of a head to head race to see who is faster.

Yeah that's Bil (Xoom) who've I've spoken to on a few occasions. His run extremely well, I'm sure he has a load of videos linked on his build thread actually. He's surprised a lot of the guys that turn out there!

Edited by Squalled

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Since my last update, not much has really happened. Other than doing an oil change not long after roll racing I haven't made any significant changes since. I do have some other plans coming up soon to get the exterior back up to scratch but that will be for another update once I either receive the parts or get time to do the work.

I recently purchased the Bowdens wash and wax since Supercheap had a sale not long ago and thought that it was definitely worth a try seeing as I've used the Meguiars wash and wax for sometime now and have heard a lot of good things about Bowdens (seeing as I've used the naked glass, quick detail and wheely clean prior). Safe to say I am pretty happy with it, very cheap for a 2L bottle, smells awesome (smells identical to banana milk!) and really makes the car shine. I have to finish the Meguiars bottle first which is only a small one but overall I'm pretty happy with the purchase.

Decided to take some quick shots once I finished the wash. It had been a few weeks since I gave it a good wash and it worked an absolute treat with the new wash and wax.



The next morning the car was covered in moisture so I gave it a quick dry up and took a shot I don't think I've taken ever.


Other than that, not much else to add for this update. I'll be fairly busy with work in the coming months so hopefully I'll still be able to keep the updates coming as they come through.

Stay tuned!

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Alrighty, not much to update on this month. With some recent changes for work I've been catching the train lately as it's quite a PITA to drive where I'm currently working. Hopefully it shouldn't be too much longer and I'll be driving it on the daily again.

Since I've been quite busy over the last few weeks the car has been neglected a little, I haven't given it a nice clean for a while now and still need to attack the interior with a vacuum and give the engine bay a good scrub down. I'll more than likely do it closer to Toyotafest since I've entered again for the 3rd straight year. I may possibly get the beast detailed professionally this year but still undecided at the moment.

Most recently I've noticed 2 issues. 1, the crack that I had repaired seems to be coming back and seems a lot more noticeable inside then before. 2, I believe I may have a failing/leaking power steering pump which is a pain because I know it's right at the bottom behind the engine in a tight spot.

I have however, received one of the new goodies mentioned in my previous update.


BRD engine mounts, I selected the red version which is more suited to street use over the yellow more suited to track. Some of the Sportivo guys and I decided to do a mini group buy since shipping is quite expensive from the UK. I've had the inserts for around 2 years or so and they've been somewhat decent but pop out which is a real pain since you'll need a clamp or washer to keep them in. These mounts require the stock centers to be removed completely and they slip right in and stay in place. I haven't got them installed as of yet but have heard heaps of great feedback about them so looking forward to reviewing them and comparing them to the inserts.

I have another part on the way, unsure when it'll arrive but will be sure to update my thread with it.

Stay tuned.

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Just a quick update to add for September. I've recently passed the date I bought the car 4 years ago last week, and after almost 90000 kms since I've bought I can definitely say it's even more fun than the day I bought it. I don't plan on selling the car anytime soon although, there is the temptation to buy something faster and something bigger, I really can't part ways with a car that's being super easy to own and maintain and especially all the great and amazing people I've met from owning the Sportivo.

Anyhow, I finally gave the car a nice wash 2 weeks ago just for it to rain for a few days after.



With Toyotafest now fast approaching, I was able to organise a detailer to give the car a nice clean up the day before Toyotafest since I had organised with him before the end of August. He noted the car was a great base to get looking great again with the only main imperfections being the spoiler and roof. I'll need to the leave the car with him for a day or so to give him enough time to really work some magic and I'm really looking forward to the results.

I've also recently begun troubleshooting my E-Manage which was causing quite a few issues which I've previously mentioned. We found that the current setup on another car still caused the same issue and it led us to find that the tune was actually causing the issue. Once a new tune was loaded up, the sputtering idle, hesitation at high RPM and 6000 RPM rev cut were gone and the unit appears to be ins good working order.

In the next few weeks, I'll be organising a few hours with my mate who's been helping to diagnose the issues to get the E-Manage and V-Manage wired up, tuned and hidden in the car. So safe to say I'm looking forward to the new gains for the end of 2019.

Other than that, I'll be updating when I can.

Stay tuned.

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Nice update coming for this month, very picture heavy!

So in the coming weeks before Toyotafest, Alec had got his hands on a mint condition OEM 6 speed gear knob which I was able to get with a trade, trading him my Super Pro end links as he needed some new ones for the air bag setup on his car before Toyotafest. Luckily they fit, just and he was able to get the car going with them. If you look through all my old interior photo's, my OEM gear knob is quite worn down and I didn't want for fork out the $350 for a new gear knob, and now that these specific gear knobs are discontinued they'll be a lot harder to find.



It's nice to see that reverse is red instead of the faded and dirty black mine has always been. I tend to only run this one when I go to shows to hopefully keep it in top condition.

So as noted in my last post, I had organised a detailer for Toyotafest. Since I hadn't done much in the years before other than give it a wash a best as I could and with the paint slowly turning for the worst I thought it was time to give it some love. A massive thank you to Arnoub at Turn Heads Detailing who was an absolute pleasure to deal with, answered all of my questions and was extremely reasonably priced for the work that was completed. Another massive thank you goes out to partner who happily drove me to drop off and pick up my car, without her I would've basically been stuck with walking and catching a train to and from.

The car was washed using snow foam, clay barred (found the paint was medium to heavily contaminated), swirl remover and gloss enhancer applied before being waxed all round and tire gel applied. Arnoub was also able to perform a headlight restoration which was much needed as the lights had faded and gone yellow fairly badly in the last few months.

After leaving the car with Arnoub for a day, I went to pick up the car and was welcomed with this.


I honestly couldn't keep my eyes of it. It's honestly the best it has looked since I've bought it. Now it'll be an absolute breeze to wash until the treatment will need to be re-applied in the near future. Below are the photo's taken by Arnoub of the car and the products used. The only major flaw now is some orange peel effect which doesn't bother me as it's in small patches on different panels.










After driving back home, I took a photo before the end of the night and before it would get moisture before Toyotafest.


The morning of Toyotafest had arrived, and as like previous years I was up bright and early ready to clean the car before heading off to a meeting point to meetup with Alec and first time Toyotafest goer Blake.




Sadly I didn't get a photo of Blake's Sportivo at the meet point since we needed to get to Castle Hill Toyota but we luckily got placed together unlike last year, albeit with a pillar separating my Sportivo from Alec and Blake's cars.




Toymods yet again organised a great day out, unlike last year the day felt like it went quite fast for me as we were all a lot more prepared with food, drinks and chairs and caught up with a few mates and spent plenty of time at the trade stands. Once 3pm came, there was the mad charge to leave the venue so we all waited for most of the first leavers to head off before we left the venue for the day. Before day was finished, I headed to an industrial area to take some shots while the car was looking it's best.





Well, that's basically it for this month. I've got some plans ahead for the remainder of the year which I will hopefully get done before the start of 2020. As normal, I will keep the thread updated.

Stay tuned.

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Update time.

For the last year and a half or so, I've been really contemplating whether to get my current wheels repaired and resprayed or, get a completely new set. I was more or less split 50/50 between the two options since I've really loved the look of the RG2's and seeing as not many people around the globe run them, it's quite unique. I've also been pretty indecisive about wanting to get news wheels as a whole heap had come up in the last year that I was looking at and by the time I decided they were usually sold.

So after such a long wait, I finally found a set that I was considering since I was having a bit of trouble finding some other wheels I had in mind in my preferred spec and colour. So, farewell to the Advan RG2's which served me well, and now on to...


Yeap, Enkei RPF1's. They are obviously one of the most common wheels in the world but, not in this factory colour I managed to find them in. They're factory Matte Gunmetallic which the first Australian owner was lucky enough to find on Yahoo Auctions just over a year ago with minimal mileage covered while in Japan. The owner was kind enough to accept a small deposit after I inspected them before I picked them up on the Friday which was super kind seeing as I wasn't too sure if I actually was going to get them.

They're 15x8 +28 which is 1" smaller in diameter compared to my RG2's and also 1" wider too. I also managed to get them with Hankook RS4's in practically new condition which I will run until they wear down and I plan to go for a sports road tyre like an RE003 since I don't plan to do any circuit work anytime soon.

So a week later it was off the tyre shop after work to get the wheels fitted and to save me a huge chunk of time having to jack it up at home. Massive thank you to my mate Kyle and his team for fitting me in so fast and getting the wheels fitted.



The following morning I was up early to get the rear guards rolled. I don't plan to go too low anytime soon but I'd rather try and reduce unnecessary scrub if I can.



Super happy with the result and have had minimal issues with rubbing so far.

Once the guards were rolled I headed over to Alec's work and he got it up the hoist for an alignment. It was the first time since I got my pilot sports over 2 years ago, which is pretty bad of me. Alec was able to get -1.5 degrees of camber on the front and get everything else aligned correctly including my steering wheel which had been off center since I've owned the car.


Once it was all done, left the work shop with a straight steering wheel and excellent alignment. The BC's can run roughly -3.0 degrees of camber on the front but we were only able to get -1.5 which turned out to be good enough seeing as I drive it on the daily and -3.0 degrees would wear down the tyres pretty badly too. Massive thanks to Alec for getting it all aligned.

And this is how it sits now!




Definitely loving the new look. It looks somewhat like a go-kart seeing as the wheels are smaller and wide as well. Seeing as the wheels stick out quite far I will need to be fairly cautious when and where I drive in the future. I haven't had the chance to test the handling side of things just yet but will be hopefully in the coming weeks before the end of the year.

Later on the same day, I headed over to my mate Adam's place so he could have a look further into the Greddy V-Manage setup. In the last few months, he's really worked some wonders with his setup in his own Sportivo and it was now time to get mine running up to standard. So as I've mentioned previously, with the low lift enabled my car would tend to jolt around 7500 RPM at random points, it went from a rare occurrence to basically every time I would engage lift. Adam managed to find a way to get it working by using a relay which works by using the stock VVTL-i signal to emulate the stock oil pressure switch.

After many hours of checking, wiring and re-checking again along with a slight hiccup with the car rev cutting at 7000 RPM in the first test run which turned out to be on wire connected incorrectly to the relay, we were in business. Lift is now set to 5500, and it's honestly awesome to drive. It's much easier to keep the car in power band between gear changes without having to shift as fast as lightning. I will be doing some fine tuning in the future to improve the power curve once Lift engages to reduce any sort of bogging or flat spots but so far, so good.

Also managed to get another shot of the front fitment while the V-Manage wiring was getting fixed up.



That's all for this month. I've still got plenty ahead for the car so stay tuned until next month.

Edited by Squalled

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Hey dude, let us know how you in your next 4x4 event, i reckon you'll have no issues in the dune sections. Wheels look great, it's nice to hand the monster truck mantle over to someone with a head as large as mine

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14 minutes ago, Chain said:

Hey dude, let us know how you in your next 4x4 event, i reckon you'll have no issues in the dune sections. Wheels look great, it's nice to hand the monster truck mantle over to someone with a head as large as mine

Hey mate,

Let us know how the Sahara is with your non gains Power FC tune that is slower than a stock tune Sportivo. Thank you for you kind comments, I will be sure to crawl over your head some day soon.


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Final update for 2019!

To begin, something not mentioned in the last update as it's now been fixed is that I had lost 6th gear again as I had sometime ago when the gearbox was rebuilt. This time, it was determined that the 6th gear and selector hub were the likely culprits causing the issue. After leaving it with the mechanic to do some checks he indeed found that 6th gear and the selector hub required replacement. Since the wait time to receive the parts was between 3-4 weeks, I was able to drive around but drive it as a 5 speed seeing as there were no other issues with any other parts.

After a 3 week wait, driving on highways sitting at almost 4500 RPM in 5th doing 100, the parts finally arrived and the car was booked in to get the job done. Thankfully it was a quick job as the gearbox could stay in and the gear and hub could be removed without removing the gearbox.


I had also collected some new gearbox oil sometime ago as I was planning to change the gearbox oil before the end of the year seeing as it had been almost 2 years since the last change.


After hearing some great stories from multiple people and mates, I ordered some Royal Purple Synchromax. After driving with it for almost a month now, I can definitely say it's well worth the extra coin over Penrite. The gears are so much smoother to engage both up and down shifting and the cold shifts are a breeze now, not that there were any issues but the main difference is how much smoother and less notchy it is when cold. I'd highly recommend it to any Sportivo owners looking for some quality oil for their gearbox.

Moving on, the 6th gear felt a little notchy at first but after a 1000kms or so it felt as it was before it was replaced. From what we found, the teeth on both the 6th gear and selector hub were worn down causing the selector to not fully engage the gear and slip off once some load was given. There is roughly 3mm of movement for the selector hub to engage 6th gear and over time like most things, it's worn down although nowhere near as bad as my synchro's for instance. I was able to keep the gear and hub to add to sadly and slowly growing gearbox part collection...





A little hard to get the photo's of the gear and hub to show the wear but hopefully they'll give a good idea. I've also found the new 6th gear selector teeth are now even, where as the old 6th gear point on the teeth is not centered so I guess Toyota have redesigned it since 2005.

Since NSW is going through one the worst droughts in history, and with the raging bush fires continuing around the state it's been quite hard to keep the car looking clean. I last washed it at the start of the month before using some quick detail and other Bowdens cleaners a few weeks ago to remove most of the dirt and grime. Hopefully in the next few days it will get some much needed love. Here's when it was last cleaned properly at the car wash.



Stay tuned for my updates in the New Year. There's still a whole heap more to go proving that this definitely is a never ending project.

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