Stuck Deciding Between the Honda Civic and Toyota Corolla? Here’s a Tiebreaker

Toyota makes some of the best cars on the market right now, but it has some tough competition from Honda, which also makes a lot of great vehicles. Two of the best cars that Toyota and Honda make are the Toyota Corolla and the Honda Civic, and both cars are competing in the compact sedan segment. It can be tough choosing between these great options, but there may be a way to decide between the two compact cars.

The long-lasting Civic is one of the marque's most dependable cars.
Honda Civic | Honda

The Toyota Corolla and the Honda Civic are both great compact cars

The sedan segment hasn’t been selling as well lately, but a handful of compact sedans continue to dominate the segment. Two of the top cars in that segment are, of course, the Corolla and the Civic. Both cars sell very well, and while they have their fans, many shoppers are simply looking for an affordable and reliable car. 

When it comes to their specs and capabilities, both the Corolla and the Civic are very similar to one another. The Toyota will be cheaper, as it starts at about $21,500, while the Honda starts at about $24,000.

They’re similar under the hood, and both Japanese automakers offer a sporty version of their sedan. The Corolla’s standard 2.0-liter engine gets 169 hp, while the Civic’s standard 2.0-liter engine gets 158 hp.

They’re also fairly similar in terms of fuel economy, as the Toyota gets about 36 mpg combined, while the Civic gets about 38 mpg combined. Both cars also have a lot of safety features, and they both did well in crash tests.

They have a similar cargo capacity, but the Civic does have a small edge in that regard. The Corolla has 13.1 cu. ft. of trunk space, while the Civic has 14.8. cu. ft.

The tiebreaker that can help car shoppers choose between the two sedans

There are, of course, other minor differences between the two compacts that may sway car buyers. For example, Toyota currently offers a hybrid option for the Corolla, while Honda plans to introduce the Civic Hybrid to American buyers in the near future. The Toyota sedan can also be equipped with all-wheel drive, while the Honda currently doesn’t have that option.

If those differences don’t sway shoppers, then there’s another that may be worth mentioning. According to J.D. Power, both Toyota and Honda won a lot of awards for how much residual value their cars had.

However, the Civic won an award for its resale value, while the Corolla didn’t win an award. As such, car shoppers who want a tiebreaker between the two compacts may want to consider the Civic as it has a great resale value.

Here’s why a car’s resale value can be an important factor to consider

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Both the Corolla and the Civic are reliable cars that can last for years, but eventually, most owners will end up selling or trading in their cars. This is when a car’s resale value matters a lot, as it can mean more money in the bank, or more value for a trade. The actual resale value of a car can vary a lot though, as it can depend on the car’s model year as well as the condition that the owner left it in.

Another big reason why this can be an important factor to consider is simply that it shows how worthwhile a car really is. Both cars cost more than $20,000, but if one car loses a lot of its value over its life, then most of the $20,000 that was spent was lost. As such, a good resale value can also mean that buyers made a good deal.