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Toyota has worked hard to gain a reputation for reliability. That reputation isn’t just for its Tacoma trucks or Sienna minivans. It turns out that the cheapest Toyota you can buy today is also one of the most reliable. But, does Toyota’s cheapest Corolla car make sense? Is it a good value without all the fancy options?

What is Toyota’s cheapest car?

You can buy a base model Corolla for just $21,700. It’s a lot of car for that money. In base LE trim, you get a host of features that make it easy to live with every day. It’s 8.0-inch touchscreen falls easily to your hands, and it includes Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, for example.

The base car comes with keyless entry, automatic climate control, and Toyota Safety Sense 3.0. Safety Sense is Honda’s suite of driver’s aid functions like dynamic cruise control and lane keep assist.  The only gripe that reviewers have about the car is that it’s 169-horsepower four-cylinder isn’t powerful. But, it is a lot more powerful than the 2022 car’s base 139-horsepower engine. It does pack in a lot of value for less than $21,700.

Is the Toyota Corolla a reliable car?

Dashboard in new 2023 Toyota Corolla Cross Hybrid XSE subcompact SUV, showing how much fully loaded one costs
2023 Toyota Corolla Cross Hybrid XSE | Toyota

Pretty much wherever you look, the Corolla ranks highly for reliability. At RepairPal, the car gets a 4 ½  score out of 5. That means it ranks the best and beats 35 other compact cars for reliability. It’s annual cost of ownership is just $362, which beats the average of $526 for the class.

At J.D. Power, it has an overall score of 81. That score is boosted by its “great” reliability ranking and resale value. Owners give it a score of 77 for the driving experience, which is likely lower because of porky motor. Traditionally, Consumer Reports has given this generation of Toyota Corolla a five-star rating for reliability.

Is the Toyota Corolla a best-selling car?

2023 CorollaHybrid in white
The 2023 Toyota Corolla Hybrid | Toyota

The Toyota Corolla is the best-selling compact car today. It just beats out the Honda Civic and the Hyundai Elantra. But, it’s sales have dipped by nearly a third this year. It was last all-new in 2017 and is starting to get a little bit long in the tooth.

But, Toyota has continuously improved the car with little bits of technology, style, and of course a larger base motor. We’re bummed that Toyota stopped offering a manual transmission version. But, that transmission never really fit this car’s mission. Its refined, nice, friendly daily transportation.

How many trim levels of Corolla are offered?

White 2024 Toyota Corolla Hatchback Nightshade Edition - Notice the spoiler and the black roof
2024 Toyota Corolla Hatchback Nightshade Edition | Toyota

Why The 2023 Toyota Corolla Hybrid Just Makes Sense

The base LE Sedan is the cheapest you can buy. But overall there are eight different levels and versions   of the Corolla. The car comes in sedan and hatchback versions, and hybrid and gas-powered versions. The sportiest trim, the SE Sedan, comes with lowered suspension and some other touches that help it stand out just a bit from the rest of the Corolla lineup. You can also order all-wheel drive.

While the sedan’s styling is more traditional, the hatchback versions of the car do have a tiny bit more cargo room. Interestingly, though, that extra cargo room comes at the expense of about about one inch of rear seat legroom in a 2023 Toyota Corolla.

Regardless, the Corolla in base LE trim does pack in a lot of value.