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Should I Buy a Camry or a Corolla?

Every year car manufacturers come out with a newer, arguably better, car than the year before. This leads not only to competition between the manufacturers, but also within the manufacturers themselves. If a new Toyota is in your sights for this year, you’ll need to consider the pros and cons of the ones most attractive to you. At Toy Car Care, we know how well-built Toyotas are (we’re named after them, after all)—so we know what really matters when you look at a new car; the devil is in the details. If you’re looking at getting a new four door car for the city or the suburbs your best option is a 2021 Camry or 2021 Corolla.

A Brief History of the Camry

First produced in 1982, the Toyota Camry was outfitted with S-series engines and a narrow body. These first versions were little more than a four-door sedan rectangle with wheels. Nonetheless, the year after, in 1983, Toyota reported over 52,000+ Camrys were sold in the United States. Since then, we’ve run through seven iterations of the Camry, landing in the eighth generation from 2017 to present day. There is almost nothing resembling the original car on the Camrys we know today, outside of the name and shared emblems.

A Brief History of the Corolla

Originally produced in 1966, the Toyota Corolla was a world best-selling car by 1974. It was the model for many future cars, including its competitor, the Camry. It was also one of Toyota’s first cars to be produced outside of Japan. It was pushed out with a (at the time) new 1100 cc K pushrod engine. Since then, we’ve received the twelfth generation, starting in 2018. 2018 marks the first time that the car has been available in three body types: the hatchback, the station wagon, and the sedan. 2020 saw a reported number of 237,000+ sold that year.

What Parts of the Cars Should be Compared?

Although we’d like to say that the difference is mostly physical, that’s simply not the case. Toyota puts great thought into what goes inside of each new car, so that is where we’ll find the biggest differences. These differences are more than just amenities that you can select when you order the cars, since those aren’t fundamental differences—more like purchasable options. We also aren’t going to worry about those things that both cars have in common, like their blind spot monitors on the side mirrors or their ten air bags. Further, their similar features aren’t really an issue either, their similar fuel economy, for example (30 MPG city with 38 MPG highway for the Corolla, and 28 MPG city with 39 MPG highway for the Camry). We’ll also not look at prices since those are semantics in the wake of a total comparison.

Let’s Look Under the Hood, First

Both the Camry and the Corolla have two engine options to choose from. The differences between the engine options this year and previous years is less since the Corolla also has come out with a hybrid option. Meaning that both cars are strikingly similar, this is encouragement to push towards hybrid and electric options instead. That said, let’s consider some numbers for both cars.

The 2021 Toyota Camry has two very different types of engines. The first is the standard that comes with the car at base price. This is a 2.5 four-cylinder, with 203 horsepower and 184 pounds per foot of torque. (A quick note, if you don’t know what torque is, it is the leverage movement inside of the engine. Cars can usually have between 100-400 lbs., and the more of it you have, the better your car is at towing, hauling, or climbing steeps.) The second engine option is a 3.5L V6. This has about 100 more horsepower, bring it up to 301. It also has more torque since it is a bigger engine, coming away with 267 pounds per foot of torque. In contrast is the Toyota Corolla with its two engine options. The standard begins with a 1.8 four-cylinder, topping out at 139 horsepower, and 126 pounds per foot of torque. Then their second option is a 2.0L four-cylinder which stops at 169 horsepower and only 151 pounds per foot of torque.

So, between your four engine choices, which one is best for you? That really depends on your plans for the car and where you see your life heading in the future. You see a big move coming up that you’ll need a car for? Consider the Camry V6 engine, since it has the best torque with the biggest engine capacity. However, if you aren’t really worried about the type of engine, you should consider the two standard options, the Camry will have the edge in comparison, but those numbers won’t be immediately noticeable or useful to the normal driver.

Now the Major Difference, Space

You can tell that both cars are very, very, similar outside of how they look and engine options. Their biggest difference is in the space that they can provide. Those of you who live closer to centralized Denver may want to keep in mind these sizes for both passenger room and cargo room, and how it will affect those in your family, it they are particularly tall or short.

First up is the Camry again, with the overall bigger interior. Their passenger volume is almost 28 cubic feet more than the Corolla. But what does that mean? It means that over the entire back of the car, from the floor to the roof, you’ll have more room; be it at the seat level or at the shoulder level, up into the head space. Meanwhile, the Corolla has less total room, but it makes up for it by having a larger seat surface.

This comparison may not seem like a large difference, and it may seem trivial. However, the amount of space you have in your car is a huge factor to think about, especially if you have dogs, kids, or tall people in your life. The Camry has some great space to use, but you will lose out on about 2 inches of seat room that the Corolla has.

Come See Us at Toy Car Care

No one loves their car more than you, except Toy Car Care. We’ve worked with cars for decades, and that experience shows in every one of our interactions. If you have any type of car trouble, bring it to us first. And if you’d like to read more about us and about cars, visit our blog.

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