2012 Toyota Corolla vs. Its Competition

2011 Toyota Corolla 4-door Sedan Auto S (Natl) Angular Front Exterior View
Bengt Halvorson Bengt Halvorson Senior Editor

The 2012 Toyota Corolla is competent in nearly all areas, but many of the alternatives are more distinct for styling, features, or the driving experience--at a comparable price.

The Hyundai Elantra is by many critics the new champ in this segment for value-conscious shoppers, with a stronger feature list than the Corolla and a bit more for the money; though like the Corolla the Elantra is more comfort-oriented.

The Nissan Sentra has better style and a better backseat, while the Mazda3 is the zippiest of all.

Comfort-minded shoppers should also consider the new Chevrolet Cruze, which has a great interior that transcends its price and feels almost like a mid-sizer for comfort.

The Honda Civic has been redesigned for 2012, with more of an emphasis on comfort, but it's arguably lost its way on styling and driving excitement.

2011 Toyota Corolla 4-door Sedan Auto S (Natl) Angular Front Exterior View2012 Toyota Corolla
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2012 Chevrolet Cruze 4-door Sedan LTZ Angular Front Exterior View2012 Chevrolet Cruze
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2012 Honda Civic Sedan 4-door Auto LX Angular Front Exterior View2012 Honda Civic
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2012 Hyundai Elantra 4-door Sedan Auto GLS (Alabama Plant) Angular Front Exterior View2012 Hyundai Elantra
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2012 Mazda MAZDA3 with SkyActiv2012 Mazda MAZDA3
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2012 Nissan Sentra 4-door Sedan I4 CVT 2.0 S Angular Front Exterior View2012 Nissan Sentra
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Quick Specs
For those who want frugal, trouble-free transportation but have no want of excitement, the 2012 Toyota Corolla fits the bill.
The 2012 Chevrolet Cruze is a practical, comfortable, fuel-efficient, and a strong value, but it does lack the nimble, tossable feel that some small-car fans appreciate.
The 2012 Honda Civic is a little more spacious, comfortable, and economical, but it's now one of the blandest of the bunch.
The 2012 Hyundai Elantra has officially left the Civic and Corolla in the dust, thanks to a 38-mpg gas mileage rating, a sleek look, and tremendous value for the money.
With its new Skyactive powertrains, the 2012 Mazda3 is the eco-conscious choice that sure doesn't drive like one.
The 2012 Nissan Sentra no longer looks fresh, but especially in base 2.0 form or SE-R Spec V guise it represents a strong value for the money with a roomy, comfortable interior.
MSRP From     
Gas Mileage     
26 MPG City / 34 MPG Hwy25 MPG City / 42 MPG Hwy22 MPG City / 44 MPG Hwy23 MPG City / 38 MPG Hwy18 MPG City / 40 MPG Hwy21 MPG City / 34 MPG Hwy
Gas I4Gas I4Gas I4Gas I4Gas I4Gas I4
EPA Class     
CompactMidsize CarCompactMidsize carsCompactCompact
Style Name     
4-Door Sedan Manual L (Natl)4-Door Sedan LS2-Door Manual DX4-Door Sedan Manual GLS (Alabama Plant)4-Door Sedan Manual i SV4-Door Sedan I4 Manual 2.0
Front Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel DriveFront Wheel Drive
Passenger Capacity     
Passenger Doors     
Body Style     
4 Door SedanSedan2 Door Coupe4 Door Sedan4 Door Sedan4 Door Sedan
Detailed Spec Comparison
 2012 Toyota Corolla vs. 2012 Chevrolet Cruze2012 Toyota Corolla vs. 2012 Honda Civic2012 Toyota Corolla vs. 2012 Hyundai Elantra2012 Toyota Corolla vs. 2012 Mazda MAZDA32012 Toyota Corolla vs. 2012 Nissan Sentra