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Looking for a 5-year-old compact car? The 2018 Toyota Corolla and 2018 Ford Focus are two popular models. They provide practical transportation without breaking the bank. This article will compare these two vehicles in several categories, including average used price range, fuel economy, reliability scores, and common problems. By analyzing these aspects, we aim to help you make an informed decision and determine which is the better used car.

2018 Toyota Corolla vs. 2018 Ford Focus: Used price range

2018 Ford Focus Titanium interior 1st row
2018 Ford Focus Titanium | Ford Motor Company

According to J.D. Power, people are paying $15,981 and $20,725 for a used 2018 Toyota Corolla. On the other hand, buyers are paying $11,632 to $31,086 for a used 2018 Ford Focus.

It’s worth noting that prices vary based on factors such as trim level, mileage, condition, and geographic location. If cost is a significant consideration, a base-model 2018 Focus will likely be more affordable.

2018 Toyota Corolla vs. 2018 Ford Focus: Fuel economy

A dark-blue 2018 Toyota Corolla SE
2018 Toyota Corolla SE | Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc.

The 2018 Corolla and 2018 Focus excel in fuel efficiency.

The Corolla, known for its exceptional gas mileage, boasts an EPA-estimated 27 to 30 mpg in the city and 35 to 40 mpg on the highway, depending on the model.

The sporty 2018 Focus RS AWD is less fuel-efficient, achieving only 19 mpg in the city and 26 on the highway. But other gas-powered models get 25 to 34 mpg combined. And the electric model can get 118/96 MPGe city/highway.

Corolla vs. Focus: Reliability scores

Reliability is a crucial factor when considering a used vehicle. According to J.D. Power’s ratings, the 2018 Toyota Corolla earned a “great” quality and reliability score of 86 out of 100, making it a dependable choice.

On the other hand, the 2018 Ford Focus has an “average” reliability score of 76. The Focus might still provide decent reliability, but the Corolla’s reputation for long-lasting performance and durability offers peace of mind.

Regardless of a used car’s reliability score, always obtain a vehicle history report and have a trusted mechanic perform an inspection to uncover potential problems before purchasing. 

Each car’s most common problems

To gain insight into potential issues, we examined owner complaints.

The 2018 Toyota Corolla has relatively few reported problems on Minor electrical issues and some engine issues are the most common.

In comparison, shows that the 2018 Ford Focus has had more reported problems, particularly related to the transmission and engine. Therefore, a used Ford Focus might give you more trouble because transmission and engine problems are two of the most costly fixes.

However, issues can vary significantly by model, depending on whether it has had consistent maintenance and where it has been driven. For example, a vehicle that has spent most of its life in snow and ice might have rust issues. It’s important to note that these problems are not universal and might not affect every model, but the Corolla has a better track record.

Which 5-year-old compact car is better?

2018 Toyota Corolla SE interior
2018 Toyota Corolla SE | Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc.

Based on the average used price, fuel economy, reliability scores, and common problems, the 2018 Toyota Corolla is the better pick between these two 5-year-old used models.

Although the 2018 Ford Focus has a lower starting price, the Corolla boasts superior reliability and fewer reported problems. This compact car’s reputation for longevity and dependability, along with its fuel efficiency, makes it an excellent daily driver.


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