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The 2023 Toyota GR Corolla is one of the newest hot hatchbacks in the market. It has 300 hp, an all-wheel drivetrain, and it competes with the Honda Civic Type R and Hyundai Elantra N. However, not every enthusiast can afford its $35,900 price tag. In that case, we recommend checking out the regular Toyota Corolla sedan, and here are four reasons to support that.

The Toyota Corolla sedan is cheaper than the GR Corolla

A 2023 Toyota GR Corolla shows off its aggressive hot hatch fascia.
Toyota GR Corolla Circuit Edition | Toyota

As stated, the 2023 Toyota GR Corolla costs over $35,000. However, the Corolla sedan starts at a far more affordable $21,700 for the base SE model. Stepping up the up-level XSE trim only adds another $5,000, meaning this more civilized model is far cheaper than its hopped-up counterpart. Of course, with the GR Corolla, you’re paying for the drivetrain. But considering the regular Corolla costs nearly $10,000 less and comes with a peppy 169-hp engine, we think it’s worth considering.

The 2023 Toyota Corolla sedan is not nearly marked-up as much as the GR Corolla

2023 Toyota Corolla XSE back end
A 2023 Toyota Corolla XSE | Amanda Cline, MotorBiscuit

Speaking of pricing, we have seen and heard of many 2023 GR Corollas being marked up by dealerships nationwide. Some dealers are adding $10,000 to $20,000 to the car’s price tag due to the car’s rarity and demand. We understand, considering the GR Corolla is quite the performer, but is that extra cash really worth it? We think not.

The Corolla sedan comes with a CVT

The interior of the Toyota Corolla
2023 Toyota Corolla | Amanda Cline, MotorBiscuit

OK, this might not be the best argument for the Toyota Corolla sedan, but it’s a valid one. For those that can’t drive a car with a manual transmission, the Corolla sedan comes with a CVT automatic. No, a CVT is not good for performance driving, but it does have a “launch gear,” which is basically a first gear to help the car get off the line smoothly and quickly.

After that, the transmission switches to its normal CVT mode, which acts like a single gear. Best of all, there’s no need for a third pedal.

The Toyota Corolla sedan gets better fuel economy

A front view of the 2023 Toyota GR Corolla
2023 Toyota GR Corolla | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

The 2023 Toyota GR Corolla can get up to 21 mpg in the city and 28 mpg on the highway, according to the EPA. The Corolla sedan, on the other hand, can get up to an EPA-estimated 32 mpg in the city and 41 mpg on the highway. That’s a large difference, especially for anyone that likes to take long road trips or has a long commute every day.

The Corolla sedan could be a better choice over the Toyota GR Corolla

Although comparing a Toyota GR Corolla to its normal counterpart may seem like comparing apples to oranges, it’s worth some buyers’ consideration. Not every GR Corolla shopper needs the extra performance and handling that the car provides, and some can’t even afford it. In that case, the 2023 Toyota Corolla sedan is worth a look, whether or not it only comes with an automatic transmission.