As one would expect the 2013 Toyota Corolla is a no-nonsense sedan backed up by its rock-solid reliability and incredible ability to stretch fuel. While the Corolla certainly provides a decent ride, American and European car makers are giving the 2013 Corolla some stiff competition in recent years. Those looking for a little more variety in their next car purchase might want to look at the Toyota Matrix along with the Corolla. The Matrix is the perfect mix of style and soul from a sporty vehicle while giving drivers the usefulness of a sport utility vehicle — all while being priced at the level of a compact sedan. Some notable improvements for the Matrix include an upgraded speaker and sound system that is fully operational with no hands. The Matrix’s base trim is loaded with six speakers.
When it comes to the 2013 models, the Toyota Matrix is available in a wide variety of options. The Matrix is available in the L and S models, both of which come in the front-wheel-drive option, while the S model is only available in an all-wheel-drive design. Toyota decided to put a 1.8-liter 4-cylinder engine in the base models which gives drivers’ 132 horsepower. Those who purchase the S model are able to take advantage of a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine that puts out 158 horsepower.
No matter what model or drive-train one selects, there are many options available including a five-speed automatic transmission with a manual shift mode, a four-speed automatic and a five-speed manual. Standard equipment includes 16-inch wheels, fog-proof exterior mirrors, climate and cruise control options and a CD player that is fully compatible with MP3 file formats. When it comes to safety, all models and trim levels have anti-lock disc brakes with brake assist, curtain airbags in all rows, a passive tire monitoring system, driver and front passenger side-impact airbags and active head restraints. There is also a Vehicle Stability Control system (VSC) that features integrated traction control for any type of road condition.
Regarding the 2013 Corolla models, not much has changed from its 2012 model. The following models are still offered in a four-door sedan configuration: Base, S and LE. It is still built on a front-wheel drive-train and seats up to five people comfortably. Like the Matrix, the Corolla still lives up to its reliable as heck reputation along with being great on gas and looking not too shabby to boot. No matter the model one chooses, each car comes with a 1.8-liter engine that pumps out over 132 horsepower. Whether you like to drive stick or simply want the on-board computer to do the shifting for you, there is an available five-speed manual or a 4-speed automatic transmission.
Since the 2013 model is extremely similar to the 2012 model, this year’s Corolla has many of the same safety features. The safety features include side and front impact airbags, anti-lock brakes with brake assist technology and driver and front passenger passive whiplash protection head restraints. Additional optional features include climate control, traction control with the vehicle stability control system, cruise control, fog lamps, a tilt-and-slide power moonroof and generous 16-inch wheels.
The Toyota Matrix is pretty straight forward when it comes to what is under the hood. Those picking up the L trim model will get the standard 1.8-liter I-4 engine that produces 132 horsepower, 128 lb-ft of torque and offers up to 850 pounds of payload. The S trim, in both front and all-wheel-drive, gives customers their 2.4-liter I-4 engine that is capable of 158 horsepower, 162 lb-of torque and offers up to 850 pounds of payload. Regarding fuel mileage, no matter what model, type of drive-train or the size of the engine, drivers will get an all-around 13.2 miles per gallon in the city and on the highway.
The Toyota Matrix is quite a spacious little vehicle for both storage and passenger and driver spaces. Along with the standard seating capacity of 5 persons, including the driver, the luggage and maximum cargo capacity measurements come in at 19.8 cubic feet and 49.4 cubic feet respectively. Other notable measurements of the interior are its rear leg room being 36.2 inches, its front leg room being 41.6 inches and its rear head room being 39 inches.
When it comes to the 2013 Toyota Corolla, there are many notable things about this year’s model. There are three different trim levels for the Corolla and they are the L, LE and S. This year’s model comes only in a sedan design. The L trim has many standard features including manually operated front air conditioning, front fog lights and anti-lock brakes with driveline traction control. Additional features include a five-speed manual transmission with over-drive, driver and front passenger heated front seats, 15” steering wheels and a 1.8-liter I-4 engine. The LE trim model has a first row open/close sliding and tilting glass sunroof, upgrades to 16” steel wheels, includes a voice operated navigation system, and has a four-speed transmission, instead of the L trim’s five-speed transmission. The S trim model maintains the same glass sunroof, uses aluminum instead of steel for its wheels, and keeps the front fog lights and voice operated navigation system. Other standard features on this trim level include manually operated front climate control, a five-speed manual transmission with over-drive, front passenger and driver heated seats, keyless entry and a 1.8-liter I-4 engine.
When it comes to prices, there is a wide variety of prices for both the Matrix and the Corolla. For the Toyota Corolla, price varies based on the trim level and what options ultimately end up in one’s final car configuration. The L model is priced anywhere from the low $15,000s to the low $16,000s. The LE model has a bit wider range as it starts in the upper $16,000s and ventures into the low $18,000s. The S model is priced similar to the LE, with it priced a touch more on the lower end and almost approaching $19,000 on the higher end. Looking at the Matrix models, prices are about as variant as the Corollas. The five-door L model is priced anywhere from the low $18,000s to the low $19,000s. The five-door S model starts in the upper $18,000s and tops out in the low $20,000s. The top end model, the S five-door all-wheel drive starts off in the low $20,000s and tops out in the mid $22,000s.