Car Buyer Labs

Car Buying Advice, Tips, and Reviews

A red 2022 Toyota Corolla SE is shown driving away from a used Toyota dealership.

Your Guide to Shopping for a Used Corolla

Doesn’t it seem as though everyone’s driving an SUV these days? Whatever happened to the classic compact sedan? After all, compact sedans aren’t just super easy to maneuver through any type of traffic situation imaginable, they’re also cheap, efficient, and pleasantly comfortable. There’s no reason why if you’re searching for a used vehicle, you shouldn’t peruse the selection of used sedans to find the ultimate ride for your travel adventures.

There’s one model that tends to stand out from the rest and that’s the Toyota Corolla, one of the brand’s best-sellers for years. Not only are you able to enjoy a confident ride, but the Corolla also offers supreme efficiency, reliability, and savings for your journey like no other vehicle can. Buying used will allow you to harness all of this and more, so when you head to your favorite used Toyota dealership, take a closer look at the Corolla. Here’s what to know about shopping for a used Corolla.

Why Buy Used?

First thing first—why should you buy used to begin with? Isn’t the Corolla inherently affordable, even when buying new? Of course, buying used allows you to get way more for your hard-earned money, especially if you have a certain set of features in mind. The used vehicle lot can offer you an extensive selection of options, ranging from various years to trim levels and more, especially when you’re looking at the Corolla, which has been on the scene since the 60s. Not only can you save money, since used vehicles have already depreciated, but you’re also able to afford a better-quality model, higher-level trim, and enhanced features to make your drive what you need it to be—and more.

Vehicles depreciate the most within their first year on the streets, so buying used allows you to skip this frustrating part of car ownership, helping you save money. In addition to this type of savings, you’ll also get to save when it comes to your insurance rate since used vehicles typically cost less to insure. The Corolla is also heralded as being one of the most reliable compact sedans on the road, with recent used models showcasing advanced safety tech. This can potentially help you save even more when it comes time to insure it. Dealership fees tend to be lower, as well as down payment amounts, making it easy to see why buying used has a hold on so many drivers.

Saving money without having to compromise on the model you want makes buying a used car even more popular than buying a new one these days—at least that’s how it seems. This is why dealerships across the country are stocking their used lots with premium options to appeal to the desires of today’s modern travelers. This is also another benefit of buying used, as you won’t have to worry about low-end vehicles residing on the lots of reputable dealers. As more high-quality cars emerge on used lots across the country, used car shoppers can have their pick from much better options than in years past.

A red 2021 Toyota Corolla Hatchback is shown parked in a city.

What Can the Corolla Offer to Your Drive?

The Corolla is a compact sedan that’s ideal for just about everyone, from daily commuters to small families and others. Its small stature makes it easy to zip through traffic, park, and navigate congested roadways with absolute ease, while its comfortable cabin provides the perfect amount of tranquility on board to sit back and enjoy your time behind the wheel. Despite its small size, the Corolla offers favorable legroom from front to back with a surprisingly spacious trunk, making it perfect for accommodating luggage, strollers, work materials, and even larger items when you fold its rear seats down. In addition, it’s LATCH compatible, making it easy to install car seats and keep your little ones safe while on the road.

Speaking of safety, newer Corollas are armed with the advanced Toyota Safety Sense suite, which includes helpful features to maximize safety during the drive. From lane keeping assistance to collision avoidance, the Corolla watches out for you from front to back—and you don’t need to buy a brand-new model to enjoy these top-of-the-line safety features. The Corolla isn’t the quickest off the line, but chances are, if you’re looking at this particular model, efficiency is more on your mind than a short 0-60 mph time. The Corolla impresses here too, with impeccable fuel economy ratings, allowing you to travel longer distances between fill-ups, and thus keep more money in your wallet.

Don’t forget that the Corolla is a Toyota through and through, which means that it represents a brand that showcases one of the best reputations of reliability in the industry. Holding its value over time, the Corolla can last for many years when properly maintained, offering a comfortable and safe ride for all on board. It’s been named a Top Safety Pick+ by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, it’s earned the Kelley Blue Book 5-Year Cost to Own Award and Best Resale Value Award, among other accolades. There’s no doubt about it—the Corolla is one of the best compact cars on the street; when you buy used, you get to enjoy cutting-edge features and incredible ride quality for less, adding extreme value to your time in the driver’s seat.

Best Toyota Corolla Model Years

Any Corolla model you choose will be able to offer you an exquisite ride and unmatched dependability; however, there are a select few model years that go above and beyond for drivers. One of these is the 2020 Corolla, which showcases one of the Corolla’s most recent redesigns, including more modern appointments inside its cozy cabin, as well as more chiseled exterior elements. Built on the Toyota New Global Architecture platform (TNGA), the 2020 Corolla exhibits better performance with a revitalized powertrain and chassis to deliver a ride quality that’s more impressive than ever. This model year also sees the debut of the Corolla Hybrid, which further enhances the Corolla’s efficiency, no matter where it’s traveling.

Models from 2017 also impress, with the 50th Anniversary Edition available, adding in exclusive style elements to make a statement in the crowd. You’ll also find that every 2017 model is equipped with Toyota Safety Sense, which features state-of-the-art safety features to bring immense confidence to your daily drive. From adaptive cruise control to help you remain at a safe speed and distance from those traveling around you on the highway, to automated emergency braking to reduce the damage of a collision by braking for you at low speeds, the 2017 Corolla has what you’re looking for to stay safe. You’ll also get to take advantage of tech features, like an easy-to-use touchscreen, Bluetooth capabilities, rear camera, and more innovative options to improve your ride.

A white 2020 Toyota Corolla is shown driving in a desert.

Buying a Used Corolla

When you’re in the market for a used car, don’t ignore the lineup of Corollas that reside at your local used Toyota dealership. The Corolla is one of the most trusted sedans that has ever been on the streets, and from safety to convenience, comfort to performance, this compact traveler knows how to deliver big energy in a small package. Buying used has its perks, as we talked about above, but it’s important to remember that certain vehicles tend to perform better than others, and the Corolla is a perfect example of this. If reliability, value, affordability, and overall ride quality are factors that you place at the top of your list, the Corolla will deliver on all fronts, which is why it’s regarded as one of the best sedans that the industry has ever seen.