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Pros & Cons

  • Good safety scores
  • Weak engine
  • Dull interior design




Critics' Rating: 6.6
Performance: 6.8
Interior: 7.2
Total Cost of Ownership: 9.4
Safety: 9.3
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2012 Toyota Corolla Overview

Reviewers were less than impressed with the 2012 Corolla’s performance. The Corolla is equipped with a four-cylinder engine, which most reviewers agreed feels underpowered. Some mentioned that the Corolla struggles to maintain highway speeds and climb steep hills. Some noted that the available automatic transmission is slow to shift and is down a gear or two on many rivals that have five- and six-speed automatics. At 27/34 mpg city/highway, the Corolla’s fuel economy is slightly less than some of its rivals’. Test drivers noted that the Corolla offers a comfortable ride, but some pointed out that cars like the Ford Focus and Mazda3 are more fun to drive.

Most critics focused on the aging dash design, which they said looks old compared with rivals that were more recently redesigned. Still, many commented that the seats are plenty spacious and there is decent outward visibility. Some critics liked the simplicity and ease of use of the climate and audio controls, while others commented that the climate control knobs aren't as smooth or precise as those found in most rivals. The Corolla comes standard with a four-speaker stereo and an auxiliary input. Available features include an upgraded six-speaker stereo, a USB port, cruise control, navigation, a power sunroof and satellite radio. The Corolla’s trunk offers 12.3 cubic feet of space, which is adequate for the class.

See the full 2012 Toyota Corolla specs »

Other Cars to Consider

The 2012 Ford Focus was well-liked by the majority of automotive journalists for its lively driving dynamics and high-quality interior. The Focus is available as either a hatchback or sedan.

The 2012 Chevrolet Cruze offers a larger trunk, and some trims offer better fuel economy than the Corolla. Reviewers praised the Cruze’s interior for its eye-catching design and spacious, comfortable seats.

Compare the Corolla, Focus and Cruze »


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