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The Toyota Corolla was completed redesigned for the 2020 model year, which you would assume would make it one of the top used cars right now. But, in a volatile market with shrinking inventories, there’s no better time to broaden your horizons. Shopping for a used sedan can be tricky right now—here are four reasons why you should skip on a used 2020 Corolla.

Do Toyota Corollas have problems?

Interior of the 2020 Corolla sedan
2020 Corolla interior | Toyota

There aren’t a huge number of annoying Toyota Corolla problems. But, when you’re shopping for a used car, there are some that you should be aware of. Strange issues with the evaporative emission (EVAP) system can trigger the check-engine light. The Corolla with automatic transmission may experience shifting problems. Some of the safety features may glitch out.

Many of these problems affect older-model-year or high-mileage Corollas, so you may be safe with a lower-mileage used 2020 Corolla. But, there are other used sedans with fewer problems.

#4: Limited space in the interior, even in a used Corolla hatchback

Now, the Corolla is a compact car, so nobody’s expecting old-timey-Cadillac amounts of space.

You could opt for the Corolla five-door model for more interior space, but critics found that even the hatchback wasn’t that great.

#3: The Corolla makes you pay for premium features

We get it: the Toyota Corolla is a cheap crowd-pleaser. But does Toyota really need to be so stingy with the standard features? The 2020 Corolla doesn’t have Android Auto but it does offer Apple CarPlay. Features that we’ve come to expect from our cars are kept at the upper trim levels in the Corolla lineup. 

A used 2020 Corolla L, LE, or SE probably won’t have what you’re looking for. You’ll likely need to pay for a more-expensive used Corolla SE Nightshade, XLE, or XSE model for features like premium seat upholstery or a moonroof.

#2: The 2020 Corolla is underpowered and sluggish

Rear angle view of a silver 2020 Toyota Corolla sedan
Used 2020 Toyota Corolla sedan | Toyota

It’s been suggested that the 2020 Corolla got too much respect when it landed new. The model has been around for a long time, and Toyota may have gotten a little too lax in their efforts. The Corolla makes only 139-169 horsepower, which is less than many of its top competitors.

Car Buying Strategies says that the 2020 Corolla “struggles to perform well in driving situations.” A used Toyota Corolla Hybrid may feel even more underpowered.

#1: You’ll pay out the nose for any used Corolla in good condition

Why are used Corollas so expensive? Because these compact cars are so reliable and durable, they hold their value better than almost any other car. In some cases, used 2020 Corolla sedans are even more expensive than their brand-new counterparts. When shopping used Toyota Corollas for sale, don’t expect to find any bargains. 

If you’re hoping for a used Toyota under $5,000, anticipate find high-mileage cars in less-than-ideal conditions.

What to buy instead: a used 2020 Mazda3


Used-Car Battles: 2020 Honda Civic vs. 2020 Toyota Corolla

Why is a used Mazda3 a good choice over a used Corolla? The Mazda3 also offers a lot of configurations with its hatchback and sedan body style (plus a variety of trim levels). Mazda’s compact delivers fun driving performance from a peppy little engine and choice of a manual or automatic transmission. It’s not as reliable as a Corolla, but reliability isn’t everything when buying a used car.

Then again, you could always just buy a used Honda Civic. That’s the typical recommendation you’ll receive when shopping for a used compact car for sale. But, wouldn’t it be fun to spice things up a little? Try the Mazda.