Last post on Oct 21, 2007 at 6:54 PM
You are in the Honda Civic
What is this discussion about?
Honda Civic, Toyota Corolla, Sedan
#5 of 199 Civic vs Corolla
Apr 06, 2004 (5:41 am)
I will jump into this discussion since it is near and dear to my heart. Keep in mind that the Civic is Canada's most popular car and the Corolla is near the top as well. Both models are built in plants that are about a one hour's drive from Toronto, although many US models also come from plants in Ohio and California.
I faced this dilemma about two years ago and ended up getting one of each since we needed to replace both of our cars. I have owned our 2002 Corolla for more than 2 years while our 2003 Civic for 1 1/2 years. Many of my neighbours also have this combination in their driveways.
Both of our cars have been flawless, with superb fuel economy and low maintenance. Dealer service locally is comparable as well - both excellent. Insurance costs are identical for my two cars (my wife and I are in our late thirties and live in the Toronto area).
Here is what I have experienced as differences.
The Toyota is more solid and feels heavier, although the two vehicles are comparable in curb weight. The Corolla has a softer more comfortable ride but this makes its handling less crisp than the Civic.
The Civic fells lighter, despite being slightly larger inside. The Civic is the largest compact in its class for real-world usable space thanks to the flat floor in the rear. This latter feature allows you to put three people in the back seat more comfortably then in the Corolla. Keep in mind my Corolla is the older body style - the new one is slightly larger.
The Civic would be my choice if you are choosing a stick shift while the Corolla is my choice for automatic. Despite being slightly underpowered, the Civic is more fun to drive while the Corolla feels like a baby Lexus. The switch gear and interior quality for both vehicles are industry benchmarks, although in LE form the Corolla with wood and leather is prettier.
Like everyone has said, you cannot go wrong with either car. In Canada, the new Mazda3 is giving the Civic a run for its money. For a younger person, the Mazda should be on their list, although our local dealer is not very good and Mazda's quality has not been as consistent as Toyota's and Honda's. Still Mazda's are great cars and it is pretty hard to go wrong with most Japanese cars.
#6 of 199 To SRocks and everyone else!
Apr 06, 2004 (1:29 pm)
Hey there, SRocks! How is the whether up in 'Frisco? It's a little on the warmer end of cool here in LA, but not hot enough for me. Anyway, to answer your question, I have yet to buy my Civic LX. I am waiting for Mercury Insurance Company to pay off the lessor for my totalled car(my accident was on Feb. 24, and Mercury is taking their time).
I did, however, get a price quote for a Civic LX at about $14,400, which is a little below invoice. I also test drove several cars, including the Civic and Corolla. I prefer the Civic because I like the idea of waiting until I reach 10,000 miles to change the oil. Also, I want a coupe and Corollas only come as a sedan.
The weird thing is that the Civic looks better as a two-door and a Corolla looks better as a four-door.
I must say Corollas look great. They have a hint of Jetta with Lexus reliability. And they are pretty fast, thus causing the fuel economy to suffer a bit.
One thing about Corollas is that the higher-end models - the LE and S - can cost as much, or perhaps even more, than the Civic EX. A well-equipped S is well over $18,000 MSRP; it just depends on the options you want on your car.
As crazygrrrl suggested, since the Civic has a set amount of options per trim level, the dealer cannot rip you off (well they can, but it may be tougher if you are prepared).
Overall, you cannot go wrong. Both will last. I do, however, prefer the Civic. Though it would be great to have a Civic and a Corolla like dunworth!
#7 of 199 Both great
Apr 06, 2004 (8:26 pm)
I like both cars but choose the Civic EX. I felt the manual transmission was smoother and I liked having a set group of options per trim level. Also, I liked the styling a bit more (the corolla looks better to most people though). Some other minor things that set the civic apart were:
1. Better mileage
2. Slightly better resale (honda does not sell fleet cars - perhaps this is why).
3. The steering wheel in the corolla is a bit far from the driver and the front leg room is cramped.
4. The civic feels roomier
5. Very good crash results
6. Some people have been reporting a sulfer smell problem
7. And most of all, I don't like the look of fake wood trim in an economy car.
Both are great. I am sure the corolla has many advantages over the civic. Look at the mazda3 also. Another great car and sportier.
#8 of 199 Since we're talking about the LX vs. LE
Apr 08, 2004 (1:19 pm)
What exactly are the EPA figures on the Civic LX auto? I was under the impression that the Corolla actually had the advantage in fuel economy for the automatics.
The Corolla also offers more hp and torque, and in my opinion, a better ride. The Civic handles more nimbly, no doubt (but not the DX or VP models).
Lack of ABS on the Civic LX is a big detriment, IMO. Around here, the Corolla LE is on lots with a few option packages that include ABS and Side Airbags for about $17,000 (certainly negotiable). To see how Corollas in your area are typcially equipped, go to www.buyatoyota.com.
In terms of crast tests, the Civic and Corolla score almost identically- both have a double 5 star in the frontal NHTSA, a double 4 star in the side NHTSA (which is a poorly designed test with many deficiencies, if youre interested in my opion), and both are Good-Best Picks by the IIHS in the frontal offset (though the Corolla is ranked slightly higher within that designation).
Resale value is in favor of the Civic, but not by as much as many people may think. Check the December 2003 issue of Kiplingers Personal Finance for exact figures (from ALG).
dunworth- are you basing your Corolla comments on your 2002 or the the newer generation that is in question?
If it were the Civic EX we were talking about, Id probably give the nod to that vehicle because Im more impressed by the Civics handling than the Corollas creamy ride. But- we're not. The LX's lack of power, torque, no ABS are bigger detriments for me.
#9 of 199 All good points
Apr 08, 2004 (5:45 pm)
I agree. However, perhaps this individual should actually compare the EX to the corolla. You can get an EX for about 17. I paid a little over 16 for a 5 spd.
Apr 08, 2004 (6:41 pm)
The EPA figures on my 2003 Civic LX sedan (automatic) is 29 city, 39 highway.
I have never gotten less than 32 mpg, even during the break in period. The highest mileage I've gotten was 42 mpg on a long trip from Oakland to Rancho Cordova CA and back.
My average is 34-37 mpg depending on how bad traffic is, or how leadfooted I get during my commute.
#11 of 199 EPA figures
Apr 08, 2004 (6:59 pm)
All Corolla automatics are rated at 29/38 cty/hwy.
The Civic LX automatic is likewise rated at 29/38.
The Civic EX automatic is rated at 31/38.
All Corolla 5 speed manuals are rated at 32/40.
The Civic LX 5M is rated at 32/38.
The Civic EX 5M is rated 32/37.
Car and Driver in the November 2002 issue, had a comparison of the manual transmission Corolla LE and manual transmission Civic LX. A few things have changed on the Civics- most notably the tires are now finally 15 inchers, but it can serve as a reference point nonetheless.
Apr 09, 2004 (4:22 am)
If your daughter is like majority of the girls of her age, she is only interested in a car because of its looks not because of its content. Her first choice is probably a MINI, and second a VW Jetta. And no matter what car you chose for her, she is not going to be happy.
Either HOnda or Toyota are fine choices, but only if one were to make a decision based on content. Ask your daughter what she thinks of a JEtta, and se her responce. VW may not be the most reliable or most fun to drive, but it has an appeal to sub-25 age category.
Apr 09, 2004 (9:33 am)
Thanks to all.
My daughter is very conservative and doesn't care that much about looks. Being 6'-0" tall, she'd never consider a MINI and the Jetta's are about $3,000 higher.
She's poured over comparisons, checked all the facts and numbers(she's a fimance major), and basically rates both vehicles about even.
The last pricing she received was about $14,800 for the Toyota and $15,400 for the Honda (both equipped with automatics, and cruise so she is comparing apples to apples). These were out the door prices and included all rebates, taxes, destination charges, title, license, etc. I think the quoted prices were very good.
Any other comments or recommendations would be appreciated. She will be buying early May unless some rebates expire before then.
Apr 09, 2004 (9:47 am)
Hi dennis1 - if you haven't already, you (or your daughter) might want to peruse the individual discussions we have on both of these vehicles. The Make/Model search on the left will list them for you.
And of course there's all the edmunds info on each that is accessible via the New Cars tab at the top of the page.
Hope this is helpful - keep us posted!