One of the best selling cars in the world, and still in production. Now in its 12th generation with a hatchback making a coming back in 2018 and now an all-new compact sedan for 2020.

2020 Toyota Corolla XSE

Trim levels of the new Corolla are; L, LE, Hybrid LE (also new), SE, XLE, and XSE.

Sportier trims, the SE and XSE get a new engine bringing more power.

I got a chance for a quick test of the 2020 Toyota Corolla XSE, which is the top of the line trim level. First, here are some fast facts;

2020 Corolla XSE Specs

  • Front-wheel drive
  • 2.0L engine
  • 169hp
  • 151lb.ft. torque
  • Transmissions available are a 6-speed manual or Dynamic Shift CVT automatic
  • Seats 5
  • Dark rear spoiler
  • Power adjustable and heated driver seat
  • Audio plus
  • 8″ color touchscreen with Apple CarPlay


2020 Toyota Corolla XSE

2020 Corolla XSE looks sporty. Photo: Toyota

Driving the 2020 Corolla

With the exceptions of new drivers, Is there anyone out there that hasn’t driven a Corolla at some point in their life? Given the Corolla has been around for…ever and with about 6 million new Corolla’s sold over the last 18 years in the U.S. chances are pretty high. You maybe already know what to expect from a Corolla, but let me tell you about a couple of important new changes/features.

What’s changed for the 2020 Corolla? It’s got a different suspension set up compared to previous models. It’s a much firmer ride with multi-link rear suspension and new shock absorbers. This and a wider track means there’s less body roll from the car. Handling is pretty good, by Corolla standards.

As well as driving along some fairly tight twisty roads in the Corolla, the last part of my test in the car was heading directly into heavy multi-lane city traffic in Denver. Accelerating into traffic from the on-ramp and merging with traffic wasn’t an issue for Corolla. With adequate power, I was able to maneuver as needed.


As far as safety goes, Toyota is ahead of the game with most of their vehicles coming with great safety features as standard. On the XSE, Toyota’s safety package called, Toyota Safety Sense 2.0 is standard. Included in that package is; Full Speed Dynamic Radar Cruise which is a form of Adaptive Cruise. Watch the video below to learn more about this safety system.

Also part of the Toyota Safety feature package is Pre Collision w/pedestrian Detection, providing enhanced speed reduction, pedestrian detection, and daytime cyclist detection. Lane Departure Aler w/steer assist will gently nudge the steering wheel back to place the car back into the lane should it cross over the line (without a turn signal).

Auto High Beams are amazing and will dip your brights if another vehicle is detected within range. Road Sign Assist and Lane Trace Assist are also part of the package along with three years of 24hr roadside assistance.

Blind Spot Monitoring is also standard on the 2020 Corolla XSE. Currently, only available on the XSE and XLE trims. It’s particularly useful when driving in heavy traffic.

These are amazing safety systems given the price point of the Corolla, which years ago would have only been available on super high-end cars.

Fuel economy

As per EPA estimates, here are the fuel economy numbers for the 2020 Corolla;

City: 31 mpg

Highway:38 mpg

Combined: 34 mpg

Toyota’s reputation in reliability, along with great fuel economy and safety features make it a good option for the price.

Contact your local Toyota dealer for more information or take one for a spin!



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