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2018 Toyota Corolla Review

The 2018 Toyota Corolla ranks in the middle third of the compact car class. It has a great predicted reliability rating, and it's loaded with advanced safety features. However, many rivals offer zestier handling, stronger acceleration, and nicer cabin materials than the Corolla. 

Pros & Cons

  • Great gas mileage
  • User-friendly infotainment system
  • Near-perfect predicted reliability rating
  • Sluggish acceleration
  • Humdrum handling
  • Some low-quality cabin materials




Critics' Rating: 7.7
Performance: 5.4
Interior: 7.2
Total Cost of Ownership: 9.0
Safety: 9.3
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2018 Toyota Corolla Overview

Is the 2018 Toyota Corolla a Good Used Car?

Yes, the 2018 Corolla is a good used compact car. Its spacious cabin is packed with easy-to-use tech features. The Corolla is also well-equipped with advanced safety features, like forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, and adaptive cruise control. Those familiar with the Corolla won't be surprised by its high predicted reliability rating or impressive fuel economy estimates. That said, many class competitors offer nicer cabins or more excitement from behind the wheel.

The 2018 Corolla has several strengths:

  • Roomy seating
  • Lots of standard driver assistance features
  • User-friendly touch screen
  • Good fuel economy ratings
  • Excellent predicted reliability rating

It also has several weaknesses:

  • Cheap-looking interior materials
  • Sluggish passing power on the highway
  • Dull handling
Why You Can Trust Us

Our Toyota Corolla review includes far more than just one person's opinion. We collected professional evaluations from 44 sources and combined them with concrete data like fuel economy estimates, safety ratings, and performance specs to help you make an informed buying decision.

The U.S. News Best Cars team has been ranking cars, trucks, and SUVs since 2007, and our staff has more than a combined 75 years of automotive industry experience. To ensure our impartiality, we never accept expensive gifts or trips from car companies, and an outside team handles the advertising on our site.

How Much Is the 2018 Toyota Corolla?

There are about 2,200 listings for the 2018 Toyota Corolla on our site, with an average list price of $15,200. Prices range from $13,000 to $18,000 and vary depending on the vehicle’s condition, mileage, features, and location.

See the Best Used Car Deals »

How Much Does the 2018 Toyota Corolla Cost to Own?

The 2018 Corolla’s five-year costs for gas, insurance, repairs, and maintenance are projected to be about $22,400, or $4,480 per year. That’s a little above average for a compact car.

Is It Better to Buy a Used or New Corolla?

The fully redesigned 2020 Toyota Corolla starts at around $19,500. In addition to its updated styling, the 2020 Corolla offers features that weren’t available in the 2018 model, such as Apple CarPlay and traffic sign recognition. The base four-cylinder engine gains 7 horsepower for 2020, and a stronger engine option is now available. You can probably save a few thousand dollars by purchasing a used model, but you’ll miss out on these significant updates.

Read about the new Toyota Corolla »

You can save even more money by purchasing an older model within this generation (2014 to 2019), but there is a key update to be aware of. Models from 2016 and earlier aren’t available with the Toyota Safety Sense suite of driver assistance features, which includes forward collision warning, adaptive cruise control, and more. If you want these safety features, stick with a Corolla from 2017 and later.

Compare the 2018, 2019, and 2020 Corolla »

See the Best New Car Deals »

See the Best New Car Lease Deals »

How Reliable Is the 2018 Toyota Corolla?

The Toyota Corolla has an excellent predicted reliability rating of 4.5 out of five from J.D. Power.

Read more about Corolla reliability »

2018 Toyota Corolla Recalls

There are no safety recalls for the 2018 Toyota Corolla at this time.

See more information on Toyota Corolla safety recalls »

Which Used Toyota Corolla Trim Is Right for Me?

The 2018 Toyota Corolla comes in seven trims: L, LE, XLE, LE Eco, SE, SE 6MT, and XSE. All models have a four-cylinder engine and front-wheel drive. Most shoppers should be pleased with the base Corolla L. It’s a great value, thanks to its long list of standard tech and safety features. Those looking for a few more convenience features should consider the Corolla XLE. It comes with more technology, including a navigation system, as well as luxuries like heated front seats.

  • Toyota Corolla L: The base Corolla L comes standard with a rearview camera and the Entune infotainment system with a 6.1-inch touch screen, Bluetooth, a USB port, a six-speaker audio system, voice recognition, and Siri Eyes Free. It also comes with Toyota Safety Sense P, a suite of advanced safety features that includes forward collision warning, pedestrian detection, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning with steering assist, lane keep assist, automatic high beams, and adaptive cruise control.
  • Toyota Corolla LE: The LE trim adds automatic climate control and heated outside mirrors.
  • Toyota Corolla LE Eco: The LE Eco is the most fuel-efficient trim. It has the same base engine, but it squeezes out 8 more horsepower and gets a couple more miles per gallon than the other trims.
  • Toyota Corolla XLE: The Corolla XLE comes with LED headlights, a moonroof, satellite radio, HD Radio, heated and power-adjustable front seats, proximity keyless entry, synthetic leather upholstery, and an upgraded infotainment system with a 7-inch touch screen and navigation.
  • Toyota Corolla SE: The SE has most of the LE’s features, but it adds appearance upgrades like 17-inch alloy wheels and a sportier instrument cluster.
  • Toyota Corolla SE 6MT: The Corolla SE 6MT has a six-speed manual transmission instead of the standard CVT. It also adds the upgraded 7-inch touch screen with navigation.
  • Toyota Corolla XSE: The XSE includes all of the SE 6MT’s features, except the manual transmission.

See 2018 Toyota Corolla trims and specs »

What Does Toyota's Certified Pre-Owned Warranty Cover?

Toyota offers a certified pre-owned program for vehicles six years old or less and with fewer than 85,000 miles. Eligibility is determined by the vehicle’s initial sale date. Toyota provides a one-year/12,000-mile limited warranty on all its certified pre-owned vehicles, and it extends the original new-car powertrain warranty to seven years from the initial sale date or 100,000 miles. Each CPO Toyota must pass a 160-point inspection. Additional benefits like a CarFax vehicle history report, towing, and roadside assistance may be available, so read the Toyota warranty page carefully.

Toyota’s CPO program is about average for an affordable carmaker, according to our research. Hyundai and Kia both have better programs.

See the best CPO programs »

How Safe Is the Corolla?

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety named the 2018 Corolla a Top Safety Pick. It earned the highest rating of Good in five out of six crash tests, and it received the top score of Superior for front crash prevention. Properly equipped models received the second-highest rating of Acceptable for how well the headlights illuminate the road ahead. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration gave the 2018 Corolla an overall safety rating of five out of five stars, as well as five stars in the side crash test and four stars in the frontal crash and rollover tests.

Standard advanced safety features:

  • rearview camera
  • forward collision warning
  • pedestrian detection
  • automatic emergency braking
  • lane departure warning
  • automatic high beams
  • adaptive cruise control

See Corolla safety scores »

2018 Toyota Corolla Versus the Competition

Which Is Better: 2018 Toyota Corolla or 2018 Mazda3?

If you’re looking for a compact car that will add some fun to your daily commute, the 2018 Mazda3 is one of the best options. Its base four-cylinder engine has more power than the Corolla’s, yet it returns similarly good fuel economy. A stronger four-cylinder is also available. On the road, the Mazda3 boasts agile handling, sharp steering, and strong brakes. It has one of the nicest cabins in the class as well. The only downsides are its slightly smaller trunk and its lower predicted reliability rating in comparison to the Corolla.

Which Is Better: 2018 Toyota Corolla or 2018 Honda Civic?

The 2018 Honda Civic is a top performer among compact cars. If you’re a frequent highway driver, you’ll prefer the extra highway oomph of the Civic’s available turbocharged engines over the Corolla’s weaker power plants. The Civic also has nimbler handling, particularly in the performance-tuned Civic Si and Type R trims. While the Corolla returns great gas mileage, the base model Civic beats it by a few miles per gallon. Inside, the Honda has roomy back seats and a bit more trunk space than the Corolla. It’s also available with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. However, the Civic has a lower predicted reliability rating than the Corolla.

Compare the Corolla, Mazda3, and Civic »

2018 Corolla Performance

How Does the 2018 Toyota Corolla Drive?

Both of the Corolla’s engines have decent power for local drives, but acceleration is slow, and the engine is noisy when climbing to highway speeds. The standard continuously variable automatic transmission shifts smoothly. The Corolla has a decent ride quality, though larger bumps in the road can jostle occupants around. Handling and steering are fairly composed but not all that exciting. Many cars in this class feel more agile and fun to drive.

  • Base engine: 132-horsepower 1.8-liter four-cylinder
  • Available engine: 140-horsepower 1.8-liter four-cylinder
  • Drivetrain: front-wheel drive
  • Transmission: standard continuously variable automatic (CVT); available six-speed manual
Does the 2018 Toyota Corolla Get Good Gas Mileage?

Fuel economy estimates with the base engine are excellent, and they’re even better in the Corolla LE Eco trim.

  • CVT: 28/36 mpg city/highway
  • manual: 27/35 mpg
  • CVT: 30/40 mpg (LE Eco)

Read more about Corolla performance »

2018 Corolla Interior

How Many People Does the 2018 Corolla Seat?

The 2018 Corolla seats five people in two rows. The Corolla’s front seats are comfortable and roomy, and the rear seats have decent headroom. Rear legroom is plentiful, thanks to the flat floor. While the Corolla has a good-looking cabin, its material quality doesn’t measure up to that of rivals.

Standard seating features:

  • cloth seats

Available seating features:

  • premium cloth upholstery
  • synthetic leather upholstery
  • sport seats
  • eight-way power-adjustable driver’s seat
  • heated front seats
How Many Car Seats Fit in the 2018 Toyota Corolla?

The 2018 Corolla has two complete sets of LATCH car-seat connectors on the rear outboard seats and an upper tether on the rear middle seat. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gave this system the second-highest rating of Acceptable for its ease of use.

2018 Toyota Corolla Features

The Corolla’s infotainment features are easy to use. The touch screen has sharp graphics and large on-screen buttons. There are also physical controls for some settings, like volume and air conditioning.

  • Standard infotainment features: a 6.1-inch touch screen, a six-speaker audio system, Bluetooth, a USB port, Siri Eyes Free, and voice recognition
  • Available infotainment features: a 7-inch touch screen, satellite radio, HD Radio, and navigation.
  • Other available features: automatic climate control, a moonroof, proximity keyless entry, and push-button start

See 2018 Toyota Corolla specs »

Read more about Corolla interior »

2018 Toyota Corolla Dimensions

Toyota Corolla Cargo Space

The Corolla has 13 cubic feet of trunk space, which is about average for the compact car class. The wide trunk opening makes it easy to load cargo.

These cargo dimensions are for comparative purposes. There is no substitute for visually examining the storage area in any car you’re considering.

2018 Toyota Corolla Length and Weight
  • Length: 15 feet, 3 inches
  • Curb weight: 2,840 pounds to 2,885 pounds

Where Was the 2018 Toyota Corolla Built?

Toyota built the Corolla in Mississippi and Canada.


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