2009 Toyota Corolla XRS

I echo the sentiments of my colleagues -- this Corolla is hardly a car that will warm the cockles of an enthusiast's heart. And really, it's not that easy to make a case for it on value, either. At the same time we had this Corolla in our fleet, we also had a Mazda 6 that stickered for only $800 more. That car offered more room and a more upscale feel than the Corolla, and it only averages 1 mpg less in both the city and on the highway. One thing the Mazda 6 doesn't have, of course, is the Toyota nameplate, which to many buyers is a synonym for reliability and build quality. And for those who are looking for those attributes, the Corolla is a reasonable car. It doesn't pretend to be anything other than a well put-together compact car that will appeal to the masses.

Amy Skogstrom, Managing Editor

I don't think someone who "aspires to own a shiny new Toyota Prius...someday" would spend $24,000 on a Corolla (the lower models of Prius cost LESS than this Corolla)
Whoa! Those pictures were taken less than a mile from where I work.

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