Used Car Review

2010 Toyota Corolla: Used Car Review

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ADDITIONAL MODEL INFORMATION

author photo by Ron Sessions January 2015

With minor changes to the 2009 model, the 2010 Toyota Corolla was upgraded with standard stability and traction control systems. As always, Toyota's popular 4-door compact sedan is focused on low-cost operation, practicality, quality and refinement. While it's no Prius, the Corolla's base 1.8-liter 4-cylinder engine offers decent fuel economy with an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rating of 35 miles per gallon on the highway. A sporty XRS model with a 158-horsepower 2.4-liter 4-cylinder engine, ground-effect bodywork and 17-inch alloy wheels adds some spice.

The 2010 Corolla is a good option for entry-level sedan buyers looking for a car that has no-nonsense value, comes with highly rated reliability, includes good resale value and is backed by Toyota's extensive parts and service network.

What We Like

Toyota Star Safety System; good fuel economy with the 1.8-liter engine; generous interior storage; minimal hump on rear-seat floor; sharp handling of XRS model

What We Don't

Plain vanilla exterior; mushy handling of nonsport models; small trunk; lazy acceleration with 1.8-liter engine; vague steering

Fuel Economy & Engine Specs

All Corollas are equipped with front-wheel drive, and all-wheel drive is not available.

The 2010 Corolla has two different engine options. The base Corolla, S, LE and XLE models are equipped with a 1.8-liter, double-overhead camshaft (DOHC) 16-valve 4-cylinder engine. Output is a modest 132 hp, and it develops 128 lb-ft of torque. It burns regular unleaded gas and has an EPA rating of 26 mpg city/35 mpg hwy with the standard 5-speed manual transmission and 26 mpg city/34 mpg hwy with the optional 4-speed automatic.

The sporty Corolla XRS features a 2.4-liter DOHC 16-valve 4-cylinder engine, which produces 158 hp and 162 lb-ft of torque. It also runs on regular unleaded and is EPA-rated at 22 mpg city/30 mpg hwy with either the standard 5-speed manual or the available 5-speed automatic.

Standard Features & Options

The 2010 Corolla is available in base, S, LE, XLE and XRS trims. Standard on the base Corolla is air conditioning, a satellite-radio-ready 4-speaker AM/FM/CD/MP3 stereo, a split-folding rear seat, intermittent wipers, a rear defroster, a center armrest, a tilt-telescopic steering wheel, an outside temperature gauge, power mirrors, manual door locks and window winders, 195/65 tires on 15-in steel wheels, anti-lock 4-wheel disc brakes, dual front airbags, front-seat side airbags and roll-sensing head-curtain airbags. New for 2010, all Corollas come standard with stability and traction control systems.

The S upgrades include larger 205/55 tires on 16-in steel wheels, color-keyed front and rear spoilers, fog lamps, front sport seats, a trip computer, a leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls, a chrome exhaust tip and a 6-speaker stereo. Options on Corolla S models include a leather-trimmed shifter and seats.

The LE trim adds standard power windows and door locks, a 4-speed automatic transmission and color-keyed side mirrors. The LE is also available with optional 16-in alloy wheels, a tilt/slide sunroof and remote keyless entry.

Moving up to the XLE trim adds 205/55-16 tires, variable intermittent wipers, remote keyless entry, Optitron gauges, a center console with a sliding armrest, woodgrain interior accents and rear-seat storage pockets. A JBL 8-speaker stereo with a 6-disc CD changer, SiriusXM radio and a navigation system are all optional.

The sportiest Corolla is the XRS. In addition to a larger standard 2.4-liter engine, the XRS gains cruise control, ground-effect side skirts, a rear spoiler, fog lamps, 215/45 tires wrapping 17-in alloy wheels, interior chrome accents, leather-wrapped steering wheel and shifter, and a front strut tower brace.

Pricing

Now in its 10th generation, Toyota's evergreen compact sedan is synonymous with affordable, reliable transportation. Clean, low-mileage models retain their resale value and command higher used-car prices. Supply is plentiful; the Corolla has been a top-selling compact sedan in the U.S. for several decades.

For a better idea of the 2010 Corolla's price range, check out KBB.com, then search the AutoTrader Classifieds to see what models are for sale in your area.

Recalls

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has announced the following recalls for the 2010 Corolla:

The big one: The accelerator pedal linkage may become stuck in the depressed position, or the pedal may be trapped by the floor mats, which may lead to high vehicle speeds and increased crash risk.

In very low temperatures, the power brake booster port may freeze, leading to increased pedal effort and longer stopping distances.

A damaged connector in the steering column may deactivate the driver's airbag, increasing crash injury risk.

A compressed front seat cushion may short out the seat heater wiring, creating a fire risk.

Accessory installed seat heaters or leather seat covers may affect the front passenger seat sensing system, preventing the front airbag from deploying appropriately in a crash.

Accessory installed Bluetooth or navigation unit may damage the A-pillar retaining clip, allowing it to detach and cause injury in a crash.

The load-carrying labels on some Corollas are incorrect. An overloaded vehicle has an increased crash risk.

Recall repairs are required by law even if the vehicle is out of warranty. Your dealer can check to see if the repairs were performed, and if not, will fix the car for free.

Safety Ratings & Warranties

The 2010 Toyota Corolla received a 4-star rating from NHTSA for frontal impacts, passenger-side impacts and rollovers, as well as a 5-star rating for driver-side impacts.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) gave the 2010 Corolla a Good rating for all crash performance categories.

Toyota covered the 2010 Corolla with a 3-year/36,000-mile basic warranty, a 5-year/60,000-mile powertrain warranty and a 5-year/unlimited-mile corrosion-perforation warranty.

Toyota certified pre-owned (CPO) cars can't have more than 85,000 miles on the odometer and must be 6 years old or less. Every CPO Corolla undergoes a 160-point inspection and gets a Carfax report. The Toyota CPO warranty covers the whole car, bumper-to-bumper, for 1 year or 12,000 miles, extends the original powertrain warranty to 7 years/100,000 miles and includes a year of roadside assistance.

Other Cars to Consider

2010 Honda Civic -- The Civic is as roomy and practical as the Corolla is, but it handles better, is more fuel efficient and is more stylish. Civic buyers can choose from a wider variety of models, including a hot, 197-hp Si sedan or a 45-mpg hwy Civic Hybrid.

2010 Hyundai Elantra -- Offering slightly more bang for your buck than the Corolla does, the Hyundai Elantra offers nicer interior amenities and a roomier cabin and trunk. Hyundai's vaunted 10-year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty is less of a deal for used-car buyers, however. The coverage shrinks to 5 years/60,000 miles for second owners.

AutoTrader's Advice

As practical as compact sedans go, a used Corolla is a good used-car choice because there is probably a lot of durable and reliable service remaining for subsequent owners. A reasonably well-equipped LE or XLE with power windows and door locks, better seat fabric and an up-level stereo will be both more livable for you and easier to sell when it's time to get something else. The 2010 Corolla has had quite a few safety recalls, including the major one involving a sticking accelerator pedal, so make sure the car you're looking at has had these attended to. Also, when available, look for a certified pre-owned model.

Find a Toyota Corolla for sale

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This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
2010 Toyota Corolla: Used Car Review - Autotrader