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2011 Toyota Corolla

Overview
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2011 Toyota Corolla Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 6.0

The Toyota Corolla is one of the best known and best loved cars in America. It's not a stellar beauty, nor is it lightening fast; it doesn't even have a third-row seat or all-wheel drive. What the Corolla does have collectively is millions of trouble-free miles, millions more loyal fans and a resale record that has the competition green with envy. Not wanting to mess with success, the 2011 Corolla arrives with some minor cosmetic changes and more standard equipment. Still, the small-car market has heated up dramatically since the Corolla first appeared, and it – along with long-time rival the Honda Civic – must now do battle with newer, sleeker and better-equipped cars such as the new Hyundai Elantra, Chevrolet Cruze and Kia Forte. Along with its new styling, the Corolla will rely on its time-tested strengths, a formula that combines great fuel economy, a pleasant ownership experience and a no-nonsense design.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you're looking for a car that is as modest in appearance and performance as it is affordable, the 2011 Toyota Corolla will probably fit nicely into your life (and your garage).

You May Not Like This Car If...

If you don't think a small price tag should mean a small road presence, you'll find alternatives, such as the new Ford Focus and Hyundai Elantra, that offer much more modern designs both inside and out as well as cutting edge audio, suspension and drivetrain technology.

What's New for 2011

For 2011, the Corolla receives new front and rear fascias, an upgraded interior, standard Smart Stop technology (a brake-override system) and the Toyota Care Complimentary Maintenance Program as standard. The XLE and XRS trims have been dropped.

Driving the Corolla

Driving Impressions Of the three trims, we found driving the S model to be the most enjoyable. With its larger tire and wheel package and available manual transmission, the S just feels...

more fun. We found that all the Corolla models feature a good ride and competent handling, with brakes that are strong and fade resistant, although we would prefer more feel than is transmitted through the electric power steering and more horsepower under the hood. The bottom line is this: The Corolla is a good, solid commuter car geared toward those whose automotive choices are made with a more pragmatic viewpoint. Those who demand more from their ride than just solid transportation, however, will likely find more to like from the Hyundai Elantra, Honda Civic Si or VW Golf.

Tilt/Telescopic Steering Wheel
This much-appreciated standard feature, rare in this class, helps drivers of all sizes find a comfortable position.

USB iPod Input
Optional on the LE and S, this feature allows for control of your iPod via the car's steering-wheel controls.

2011 Toyota Corolla Details
Interior

The 2011 Toyota Corolla features a spacious and comfortable cabin that belies its compact car status. Though the rear seat is still a bit tight for the long legged, hip and shoulder room is impressive. The lowered roof line, however, somewhat cuts into head room, especially for those sitting in the rear seat. Attention to interior details includes new gauges with easier-to-read fonts, more color-contrasting materials on the doors and seats and a sporty new steering wheel on S trims. The instrument panel offers speedometer, tachometer, fuel and coolant-temperature gauges and an optional multi-information display that includes a clock, outside temperature, fuel economy, range, average speed and elapsed time. Storage bins and cup holders abound, and the glove box features a split upper and lower bin design. Cargo volume in the trunk is a generous 12.3 cubic feet, but can be expanded thanks to the 60/40-split folding rear seat.

Exterior

For a Corolla, the new exterior is really quite edgy. Looking somewhat like a miniature Camry with Scion-inspired front and rear styling, the four-door 2011 Corolla is sporty and sleek, but still a bit stale when viewed from the side. A trio of character lines run along the door handles to the rear fenders, from the hood to the front pillars and from the front bumper to the front fender flares, while a low front-air intake adds visual width below the Toyota signature grille. The entire package is designed not only to look good, but reduce exterior drag, thus helping to quiet the interior and improve fuel economy. Those seeking the most extreme Corolla will likely be drawn to the S model, which features front and rear spoilers and rocker moldings.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The base 2011 Toyota Corolla comes with 15-inch steel wheels, air conditioning, power steering, tilt and telescopic steering wheel, 60/40-split folding rear seat, power mirrors, AM/FM/CD (XM Satellite-ready) radio, outside temperature gauge, a driver's-seat height adjuster, traction and stability controls and driver and passenger front, seat-mounted side and side-curtain airbags. The LE adds an automatic transmission, MP3-compatible CD player, power windows and locks, cruise control, remote keyless entry and color-keyed heated side mirrors. The S has fog lamps, front and rear spoilers, sport seats and a leather-trimmed steering wheel.

Optional Equipment

The base Corolla offers no options this year, so if you want power windows and cruise control, you'll just have to move up to the LE trim. Individual options for the S are limited to a power glass moonroof and an audio package that adds a USB port with iPod connectivity and Bluetooth hands-free phone connectivity and music streaming. The LE can be equipped with the Premium Package, which combines the power moonroof and upgraded audio option with 16-inch five-spoke wheels and fog lamps.

Under the Hood

With the loss the XRS trim, there is only one engine offered on the 2011 Corolla: A 1.8-liter four-cylinder good for 132 horsepower. This engine is great for reliability and fuel economy but, as would be expected, is only so-so for performance. Driving through a choice of either a five-speed manual or a four-speed automatic transmission, it delivers an excellent 26 city, 34 highway and 30 combined EPA-rated miles per gallon (automatic model).

1.8-liter in-line 4
132 horsepower @ 6000 rpm
128 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 28/35 (manual), 26/34 (automatic)

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2011 Toyota Corolla Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.5
Out of 10

Based on 486 Ratings for the 2009 - 2013 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.8/10
    Quality
    8.7/10
  • Reliability
    9.1/10
    Performance
    8.5/10
  • Comfort
    8.5/10
    Styling
    8.6/10

I love my 2012 Corolla S

By on Friday, September 26, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 22,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Economic gas mileage, $35 fill up @ 3.80/gal :-)"

Cons: "Didn't get a manual, seatbelts could be more comfy"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I have had my car for a year, it is black with a spoiler on the back and fog lights in front. I take at least 5 cross country trips a year, going to Florida, Ohio, West Virginia and Michigan. This car has a big car feel from the inside. Lots of head room, gigantic trunk for a small car, lots of leg room for all passengers. I have Bluetooth, so hands off talking on phone and texting with my Android. It even tells me how far I can go on a tank of gas so I never fear running too low. Everyone loves this car. My brother visited from Portland, OR and drove my car all week. He said he is going to look for one when he gets home. The only problem I have with my Corolla, is everyone wants to drive it!"

1 person out of 2 found this review helpful

Gets from A to B

By on Tuesday, September 23, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 20,000

10 5.0
overall rating 5 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
5/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
5/10
Performance
3/10
Styling
3/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "convenient, meets basic tech. needs"

Cons: "cheap interior materials, dull driving experience"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 6

"I've had this car for almost two years. LE model. It gets the job done. Wireless connectivity with my iPhone is extremely convenient. Major step up from my Saturn Ion. Interior materials are kind of cheap, and the dashboard vibrates in the cold weather when everything starts to shrink. My biggest complaint is from under the hood-- acceleration is incredibly sluggish. All in all, good starter car, but I think for the same price I could've gotten something else with better materials and a better driving experience."

1 person out of 2 found this review helpful

Nice looking car - comfortable and affordable.

By on Monday, September 15, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 14,500

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "Great price"

Cons: "I really don't have anything bad to say"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I bought this car brand new in 2013. I am well satisfied with the cars looks, ride and how comfortable it is. This is my second time buying a Toyota. The last one was purchased new in 1998 and had 294,000 miles on it before I bought this one."

2 people out of 3 found this review helpful

Strong and reliable. Love more than new 2014 model

By on Saturday, September 13, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 14,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "You get what you pay for. It's a strong car."

Cons: "No LED light or mirrors with with signal lamp."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Purchase the 2013 model to replace a 2003 Toyota Matrix but ended up keeping the Matrix also. Just could not let go of the XRS Matrix. This model S has great features and a super design. Engine is strong and with most hill driving I get great gas mileage (28.3 mpg). Gas mileage in part is due to low rolling resistance tires. This corolla has a manual trans that also sounds great. Newer cars are now using synthetic oil which has a higher cost for oil change, no metal filter to replace just need to change the element. I have just one complain; it has no led lights or mirrors with signal lamp (I can live without them). Other than that the car is great, comfortable, attractive, safe, lots of room and sound system is very nice. Interior is very nice with the black seats with blue stitch accent and very comfortable, easy to use control buttons, steering radio controls and you actually feel safe in the car. Fits 4 adults and one child with comfort or you can fit up to 5 adult but not to comfy. Trunk room is super, roomy for it's class. Acceleration is fast and breaking is great and safe. Give it a try..."

2 people out of 3 found this review helpful

I enjoy driving this car.

By on Wednesday, September 10, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 64,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "Reliable and efficient. Low gas consumption."

Cons: "None."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"I bought my 2010 Corolla in 2009 and have had one problem with the car. I have a moon roof and it started to rust in 2013. The dealer said it was not covered under warranty but the area representative agreed to replace the moon roof door without charge. This is my third Corolla and I love it."

6 people out of 9 found this review helpful

2009 Corolla LE: A car to remember

By on Thursday, September 04, 2014

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 38,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
8/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"Bought several months ago used from small local dealership that had it priced right! Mine is dark gray metallic and other than a few surfact scratches it looks great. It is very different car than my Chevy Cavalier in many ways. Restyled for '09 with nice profile from every angle. Ride is smooth, interior very quiet, good stereo system, quiet but cold A/C. Its in the same class as the Cavalier but much more room inside and the styling/finish is refined, crisp, clean lines. The nicest car I've ever had. Some complain about the electronic assisted steering, I find it better/easier than the Cavalier, brakes take getting used to, a tab bit softer than Cavaler's. It is peppy for a 1.8L and the MPG's city and highway are fantastic. I hope it has the great reliability I've read about for Toyotas. Don't knock it till you've driven one."

1 person out of 2 found this review helpful

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

Buying this car?