Picking Out The Best Toyota Corolla

March 20th, 2020 by

Three Toyota models, all 2020 Toyota Corollas, are parked in the desert.

A lot of people drive Toyota Corollas. Just how many? In 2019, Toyota sold nearly 305,000 units in the United States alone. And this is nothing new. This is nearly identical (a 0.4 percent increase) to 2018 numbers. It is the third best selling car in the United States with the Toyota Camry leading the way for car sales. With these kinds of sales numbers, you know you’ll always be able to find not only a great deal but also replacement parts for less than most other cars on the road. But with so many people driving a Corolla (over 600,000 sold in the last two years), how do you stand out and find the right design that personally fits you as a driver? This is where finding the right trim is essential. It helps you sift through the different Toyota models to find the one that meets more of your needs without paying for features you’ll never use. To help you decide which Toyota Corolla is the best, here is a rundown on all the different 2020 Toyota Corolla trims.

Three Corollas To Choose From

First, there are three Corolla designs to choose from. First, there is the standard sedan. Then there is the hatchback design, which gives you the raised rear fifth-door over a traditional trunk. And the third option is the 2020 Corolla hybrid. 2020 marks the very first year Corolla has a hybrid design. Each of these vehicles come with different trim possibilities, so we’ll go over the different trims for each model design.

A dark grey 2020 Toyota Corolla XSE is driving on a tree-lined road near Indiana, PA.

2020 Toyota Corolla

For the standard Corolla, the base trim is the L. This is followed by the LE, the SE CVT, the SE Nightshade Edition, the SE, XLE, and finally, the XSE.

The L vehicle comes with one trim engine option, which is a 1.8L I4. This is the same engine option as the LE. Both the L and LE come with LED headlights and LED daytime running lights. The big difference is the LE features color-keyed heated power outside mirrors (the L mirrors are not heated). You also have the option of adding color-keyed heated power outside mirrors with a blind-spot warning.

The SE CVT comes with a new trim engine upgrade, with a 2.0L I4. It also features high-grade LED headlights, accent LED lighting, and LED tail and stoplights with smoked sport trim. The rearview mirrors are heated and come with turn signal indicators. The wheels are upgraded as well to 18-inch machined alloy (the L uses 15-inch wheels while the LE uses 16-inch wheels The SE offers the same features as the SE CVT, only it is a manual transmission).

The SE Nightshade Edition uses the same engine trim as the SE editions. This one though comes with a black roof-mounted shark-fin antenna and blacked-out Toyota badging. The wheels are also 18-inch black-painted alloy. It gives you a total blacked-out design for when you want to go streamlined (or when you want to pretend you’re driving around in the Batmobile).

The XLE trim uses a slightly different 1.8L I4 engine from the previous trims. This particular engine pumps out slightly more horsepower, although the 2.0L I4 is still the best in terms of sheer performance numbers. It uses smaller 16-inch wheels, although it comes with an available premium audio system with a dynamic navigation option, which is not available on the other trims.

Lastly, there is the XSE. This takes much of what the XLE offers, but it drops in the slightly larger 2.0L I4 engine. It offers both normal and sport driving modes and has the 18-inch alloy wheels. Basically, the XSE is the combination of the XLE, and the SE trims into one vehicle design.

2020 Toyota Corolla Hatchback

The Toyota Corolla Hatchback does not come with the sheer number of trims as the base Toyota Corolla. However, when features are the same when comparing hatchback models with the regular sedan models.

The three hatchback trims are the SE, the SE Nightshade Edition, and the XSE. All three of these models come with the same 2.0L I4 engine. All come with the same LED headlights, taillights, and automatic high beams. However, only the XSE comes with integrated LED fog lights and optional adaptive front-lighting. The SE Nightshade Edition again comes with a mostly blacked-out design and a black roof-mounted shark-fin antenna (although this is an option on the other two trims).

One of the main external differences is the SE uses 16-inch twin-spoke alloy wheels while the XSE uses 18-inch machine-finished alloy wheels. For the Nightshade Edition, the hatchback features 18-inch black alloy wheels to match the blacked-out paint and badging. The XSE does take the SE and build upon it, though. It comes with more optional packages if you want to customize your hatchback, including a new audio plus speaker system, blind-spot monitoring, and a two-tone black roof.

A blue 2020 Toyota Corolla Hatchback is driving through a shipping container storage area.

2020 Toyota Corolla Hybrid

So which trim is best for the 2020 Toyota Corolla Hybrid? Well, that’s the easiest question we’ll answer all day because there’s only one available: the Hybrid LE. This way, if you want a hybrid Corolla, you won’t need to do a lot of thinking about it.

The LE comes with the same features found on the regular Toyota Corolla LE trim; only this one uses a 1.8L hybrid ECVT engine. Of course, it comes with the hybrid power mode to help you save with your fuel economy (you’ll be hitting up to 53 miles per gallon with the Hybrid LE). It also uses a 7-inch color TFT multi-information display behind the steering wheel, which is a slight upgrade over the standard LE. However, other than this, the two vehicles will come with the same features.

Which Corolla Trim Is Best?

So, out of all the trim options available, which is best? Well, we don’t want to tell you the trim to buy, because it really comes down to personal preference, but we’ll go over our favorites. The SE Nightshade trims are probably the sportiest, sleekest looking Corollas. When you want that Night Rider feel (sorry, it doesn’t come with KITT talking back to you, although you can talk with your Google Home or Amazon Alexa if you’d like), this is a fantastic way to go.

Now, if you like some of the features of the SE Nightshade, but the all-black design is a bit dreary for you, the XSE is the way to go. It comes with the most optional upgrades, not to mention there are more colors to choose from than the Nightshade.

If you want the most options, you’ll want to go with the traditional sedan, but if you like that fifth door design, you should hop into a new hatchback. The best thing is with so many model designs and trims you will be able to find something that always matches your needs.

The Best Corolla Trim For You

With so many different Corolla trim options to choose from, you can always find one that fits your vehicle needs. Whether you want a sporty, edgy Corolla, one bursting with color, or one that offers fantastic fuel economy, there’s a trim that can do that. Because what is best for you isn’t always going to be what’s best for the next person, but that’s perfectly fine. Because giving people what they want is what Toyota does best. Want to see for yourself? Check our selection out at Colonial Toyota in Indiana, PA today!

Posted in Toyota Models