2022 Honda Civic vs. 2022 Toyota Corolla: Which Small Sedan Is Right for You?

It’s safe to say the arrival of the 2022 Honda Civic has shaken the sedan world. Obviously, a new Civic is always a big deal, and the latest iteration is no exception. However, the 2022 Toyota Corolla has flown under the radar. Part of me knows there’s a new Corolla; why wouldn’t Toyota make one? Yet it remained forgotten in my mind.

Doug’s thoughts on the Toyota Corolla are spot on | Doug DeMuro

That said, the Corolla is a solid contender, but against the Civic? Let’s just say Toyota’s small sedan has a lot of work to do.

The 2022 Honda Civic is small sedan Goliath

A red 2022 Honda Civic hatchback shot in profile on a city street
The 2022 Honda Civic toned down the styling from last generation’s model | Honda

So, let’s start with the 2022 Honda Civic. Obviously, it’s the latest iteration of Honda models that have become a byword for affordability, performance, and reliability. We’ll get to performance in a bit, but the new Civic certainly checks that “affordability” box just as well as previous generations. MSRP is to start below $22,000, just $1,000 or so more dollars than the 2022 Toyota Corolla.

For your hard-earned money, you’re getting a totally new interior and your choice of a litany of options and configurations. For now, power figures sit right around 180-200 hp depending on trim level. We can certainly expect a 2022 Honda Civic Type R and Si, but for now, body styles are limited to sedan or hatchback.

Will there be a 2022 Toyota Corolla hatchback?

A red 2022 Toyota Corolla hatchback shot from the low front 3/4 in a studio
The 2022 Toyota Corolla hatchback beats the sedan in looks | Toyota

That sits roughly in line with the 2022 Toyota Corolla. For $20,000 and up, you get your choice of sedan or hatch Corolla, along with a few powerplant options right up near 200 hp, just like the Civic. That said, it certainly feels like the Civic’s $1,000 premium went right to the interior.

Outside of that, as Doug says in the video above, the 2022 Toyota Corolla excels at being, well, just a car. It’ll go where you need it to, and thanks to famed Toyota reliability, it’ll get there without breaking. That can also be said for the Honda, but the Corolla’s current powertrain has more than proved its mettle.

Both sedans offer a manual transmission, but only one is better

The six-speed manual transmission in the Corolla sedan
Both the Civic and the Corolla sedan offer a manual transmission | Matt West via Getty Images

The 2021 Honda Civic Si Isn’t Here and That’s Ok Because the 2020 Civic Si Is

Yes, you can both the 2022 Honda Civic and the 2022 Toyota Corolla with a manual transmission. It’s incredibly rare in this segment. The Mazda 3 only comes with an auto, after all. That said, if price is your absolute objective, then the Corolla is the clear choice. However, if you’re able to spring for the Civic, do so. It’s just a much nicer package that works out to tens of dollars more on a lease. Regardless of your choice, you’ll certainly end up with a reliable car.