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Yes, the 2022 Toyota Corolla Cross is basically a lifted version of the brand’s compact sedan. After all, they’re both based on Toyota’s TNGA platform. However, I had the Corolla Cross for a week and realized that it’s much more than just a lifted sedan. Here are five reasons that Toyota’s latest small crossover could be better than you think it is.

1. The 2022 Toyota Corolla Cross offers a lifted ride height with familiar driving dynamics

2022 Toyota Corolla Cross front corner
2022 Toyota Corolla Cross front corner | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

Have you always wanted a Toyota Corolla, but wish it was just a little bigger and more capable? If so, that’s literally the Corolla Cross’ main draw. It drives like a Corolla in high heels, which means that it offers a more commanding view of the road and added capability – thanks to its optional AWD system.

2. The Corolla Cross’ subtle styling should keep you satisfied for a while

2022 Toyota Corolla Cross front
2022 Toyota Corolla Cross front grille | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

Whether you’re planning on leasing a Corolla Cross and driving it for a few years or you plan on financing it and then keeping it forever, you’ll likely never get tired of its styling. Yes, it’s subtle and safe, but that’s the inherent beauty of the Corolla Cross. The large front grille and soft edges make look a little weird now, but trust me, you’ll appreciate more as the years go on.

3. The Corolla Cross is slow but comfortable

2022 Toyota Corolla Cross Interior
2022 Toyota Corolla Cross Interior | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

The 2022 Corolla Cross is powered by a naturally aspirated 2.0-liter, four-cylinder engine that generates 169 hp and 150 lb-ft of torque and weighs over 3,100 pounds. I’ll admit, that the power-to-weight ratio equates to lazy acceleration from a standstill, but I will also say that the car is very comfortable and easy to drive. That means that although you may not get to your destination quickly, you definitely won’t feel sore or fatigued once you get there.

4. The Toyota Corolla Cross only costs $2,000 more than a Corolla

White 2022 Toyota Corolla driving on a city street at night
2022 Toyota Corolla | Toyota

When comparing the pricing between the entry-level Corolla sedan with the Corolla Cross, you’ll notice that the latter is only $2,000 more. Considering the base Corolla Cross comes well-equipped with features like Apple Carplay and Android Auto and a full set of driver-assist features like adaptive cruise control, it’s well worth the price. You’ll get a higher ride height and a 1,500-pound tow capacity, which isn’t bad either.

5. You can have an all-wheel drivetrain and good fuel efficiency at the same time

2022 Toyota Corolla Cross Wheel
2022 Toyota Corolla Cross Wheel | Joe Santos, MotorBiscuit

2022 Toyota Corolla Cross ‘Checks’ 2022 Subaru Crosstrek

While the all-wheel drivetrain in many crossovers tends to suck the fuel efficiency right out of it – since there are more moving parts – the Corolla Cross doesn’t suffer too much of a penalty for it. The front-drive model is slated to get an EPA-estimated 31 mpg in the city and 33 mpg on the highway. But when you opt for the AWD version, that EPA estimate only drops to 29 in the city and 32 on the highway. That’s not bad.

In my weeks’ worth of mixed driving at a mile-high altitude, I averaged 28.3 mpg. That’s still not bad considering I was mainly driving around town all week. Your results may vary.

The 2022 Toyota Corolla Cross is an excellent value

If you’re looking to buy a small crossover to graduate from that Corolla you were driving all throughout college, the Corolla Cross is the way to go. It’s cheaper and a little smaller than a RAV4, but still offers a good amount of capability should you need to drive off the beaten path. All things considered, the Corolla Cross is an excellent value and far better than you might think.