Reliability Hotshot Exceeds Performance Expectations: 2023 Toyota Corolla XSE Review
2023 Toyota Corolla XSE Review Highlights:
Price: $21,700 – $26,850
Pros: The 2023 Toyota Corolla is the quintessential reliable sedan, and the XSE trim adds a little extra style.
Cons: The engine can be loud when under acceleration, and the trunk is slightly smaller than expected.
The 2023 Toyota Corolla XSE is still fresh from a pretty recent design and only received minor improvements this year. As one of the best-sellers for the brand, Toyota didn’t change much in the magical Corolla formula. As one of the original Toyota models, practicality and value are two of its biggest strong suits.
After living with the 2023 Corolla for a week, there was not much to complain about. This well-rounded sedan only adds to its stellar reliability history for another year.
What’s new with the 2023 Toyota Corolla?
The 2023 Toyota Corolla had minor style upgrades and a new infotainment system. Toyota added some safety systems as standard equipment and improved some aging technology. Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard now, and the new eight-inch touchscreen looks good and works well.
Which 2023 Toyota Corolla trim level is right for you?
The 2023 Toyota Corolla prices range from $21,700 and up. There are seven trim levels divided between gasoline and electrified. A base LE Corolla will run you $21,700 this year, up to the Hybrid XLE for $26,850. The base model is still well-equipped for how inexpensive it is.
Our test vehicle was the XSE for $26,850. This version had a few upgrades, like 18-inch graphite wheels and SofTex-trimmed heated seats. I recommend this trim level or the Hybrid SE for the best of both worlds. The Hybrid SE trim gets 50 mpg in the city and 43 on the highway.
|2023 Toyota Corolla Trim||MSRP||Fuel Economy|
|LE||$21,700||32 mpg city/41 mpg highway|
|SE||$24,140||31 mpg city/40 mpg highway|
|XSE||$26,850||31 mpg city/40 mpg highway|
|Hybrid SE Infrared||$26,025||50 mpg city/43 mpg highway|
|Hybrid LE||$23,050||53 mpg city/46 mpg highway|
|Hybrid SE||$25,490||50 mpg city/43 mpg highway|
|Hybrid XLE||$26,850||53 mpg city/46 mpg highway|
The test vehicle also had a JBL Premium Audio package for $675 and a $1,095 delivery fee. In total, this 2023 Corolla XSE was $28,970.
How does the Toyota Corolla XSE drive?
Those looking for a reliable four-door sedan with good fuel economy will find all that in the 2023 Toyota Corolla. It is a sensible vehicle for everyday driving and has plenty of room for how small it appears on the outside.
Toyota’s 2.4L four-cylinder engine is durable and comes with a CVT transmission. The engine was a little loud under hard acceleration, but it wasn’t very noticeable with any music playing. It uses three different driving modes, and Sport mode was notably helpful for getting up to speed on the highway. During testing, Eco mode did a good job of keeping fuel economy in the expected range. To be fair to the Corolla, it is full-fledged summertime in Florida, and the air conditioner ran hard the entire time.
One drawback to consider is the cargo capacity, which is only 13.1 cubic feet. Most small sedans have at least 14 cubic feet of cargo space, if not more. A guitar case barely fits, which is a pretty standard item to carry around—something to consider if you tend to carry a lot of cargo regularly.
While new car costs remain at an all-time high, the Corolla is a breath of fresh air. With the top-of-the-line Corolla Hybrid trim still under $27,000, Toyota delivered another stellar sedan option for shoppers on a budget.
How is the tech on the 2023 Corolla?
Toyota updated its multimedia system for this year, and the new eight-inch touchscreen works well. The Toyota Audio Multimedia system has wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, which worked quite well during testing. The wireless capability was helpful and automatically connected to a phone after setup. After driving a different car that required the phone to be plugged in and disconnected every two to three minutes, the Corolla’s wireless Apple CarPlay was a breeze.
A sub-$30,000 car will not have a ton of technology, but what the Corolla does have, performs as it should. The dashboard was clear and easy to read, and the screen was responsive. Push-button start was a convenient addition.
The 2023 Corolla also had plenty of safety systems, which we will explore further. However, it had plenty of alarms to remind you to buckle up and check the back seat after getting out. While the alarms were sometimes overbearing, this tech is meant to keep everyone safe. Mission accomplished, as you will buckle your seatbelt immediately to stop the alarm.
What is the gas mileage for the 2023 Toyota Camry?
Toyota offers a few different engine choices, but the base model is the 2.0L four-cylinder that gets 32 mpg in the city and 41 mpg on the highway. Similar trims get 31 mpg city and 40 mpg highway. The four-cylinder gets 169 horsepower and 151 pound-feet of torque. These models only get front-wheel drive as an option.
The Toyota Corolla Hybrid engine is a 1.8L four-cylinder that gets 50 mpg in the city and 43 mpg on the highway. Depending on the setup, that goes up to 53 mpg city and 46 mpg highway. Front and all-wheel drive are available.
While driving the Corolla around town, fuel economy estimates were better than expected. With mostly city driving, the Toyota saw higher than 31 mpg. Estimates for annual fuel costs are $1,300, lower than the average new vehicle by a lot.
How reliable is the new Toyota Corolla?
Reliability is one of the most significant factors shoppers consider, and the 2023 Toyota Corolla is one of the best. It offers some of the best value in the game, and while it isn’t the sportiest option on the market, it isn’t trying to be. The winning formula remains for 2023, and the Corolla is one of the most reliable sedans out there.
In its 12th generation, Toyota keeps the Corolla looking and feeling fresh. The XSE trim adds some updated wheels and a sport mesh front grille. An upgraded suspension also offers a comfortable ride. Minor improvements and styling changes set the 2023 Corolla apart but keep the decades-old reliability.
How safe is the 2023 Toyota Corolla?
The Corolla is very safe, thanks to Toyota Safety Sense 3.0. That includes many standard systems, such as:
- Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection
- Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist
- Automatic High Beams
- Road Sign Assist
- Advanced Airbag System, 10 airbags throughout the cabin
- Driver and front passenger Whiplash-Injury-Lessening (WIL) seats
All of those systems and extra airbags work together to make the Corolla very safe. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety awarded the sedan with its Top Safety Pick award. It earned high marks on important crashworthiness tests, and the LED projector headlights provide good visibility.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration also gave the 2023 Toyota a five-star overall safety rating. It provided the driver and passengers with protection during testing. While driving the Corolla around town, Road Sign Assist worked well and displayed speed and other information on the dashboard. Lane Departure Alert also worked as described without being too intrusive.
The editors at MotorBiscuit give the 2023 Toyota Corolla a rating of 8.4 out of 10
We give the 2023 Toyota Corolla a score of 8.4 out of 10. This sedan delivers on all its promises and provides a safe vehicle for daily driving. It has enough power to move around town and enough fuel economy to keep from hitting the gas station frequently. There are many hybrid powertrains to choose from, and all of the trim levels stay under $30,000.
It is hard to find another sedan option that comes as well-equipped as the Corolla for the price. In the crowded small sedan segment, this Toyota remains a best seller for a reason.