2021 Nissan Sentra vs 2021 Toyota Corolla

Dependable compact sedans like the Nissan Sentra and Toyota Corolla have been around for so long, it's easy to take them for granted. Launched in 1982, the Nissan Sentra has become Nissan's best-selling vehicle. The Corolla on the other hand was launched in 1968, and is also Toyota's best-selling car as well! Bottom line: They represent the best of what compact cars have to offer, and they boast numerous safety features too!

To help you choose between the two, check out this comparison between the 2021 Nissan Sentra and the 2021 Toyota Corolla from our friendly team at Maus Nissan of New Port Richey.

Style and Performance

With a sharper style that was upgraded in 2020, the Nissan Sentra is set far apart from the comparatively bland Toyota Corolla.

The Sentra rides on an all-new platform that is 2 inches wider and 2 inches lower and boasts a sportier suspension and stronger engine than its predecessors. The SR trim is the flashiest of the three trims and comes equipped with 18-inch alloy wheels, a sporty rear spoiler, and black on chrome trim elements. Both the SV and S models ride on 16-inch wheels.

The powertrain of the Nissan Sentra has 149-hp with a 2.0 liter inline-4 continuously variable transmission. It can produce up to 146 lbs per foot of torque. Fuel economy in the S and SV is 29 mpg in the city, and 39 mpg on the highway. The heavier SR model has 28 mpg in the city and 37 on the highway. Outward vision in the cabin is enhanced by a high windshield, and the independent rear suspension makes the Sentra fun to drive!

The Corolla is also offered in a base sedan, a hatchback design, and the Corolla Apex Edition. The Corolla's base engine offers 139-hp and a 1.8-liter inline-4 continuously variable transmission. It is relatively efficient with 29 mpg in the city, and 37 on the highway. Toyota's hybrid Corolla sedan is rated at 53 and 52 mpg respectively. The Corolla Apex Edition while boasting a sportier look, a manual transmission, and a stiffer suspension, doesn't offer many performance benefits, and the ride can even be too stiff at times.

Overall, the Nissan Sentra outperforms the Toyota Corolla in handling, responsiveness, and ride quality.


The sporty vibe of the Sentra's exterior carries over to the interior, where even the base trim gets a flat-bottomed steering wheel, a 4.2-inch information display, a 7.0-inch touchscreen, and a USB port. Available premium touches to the Sentra include quilted leather seats, and a heated steering wheel, something not often offered in an economy vehicle! Upgrading to the SV trim includes numerous features, such as three USB ports, an 8.0-inch touchscreen, Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, adaptive cruise control, and upgraded cloth seats. Chrome accents further accent the visual appeal!

The Sentra has rear seats that are roomy enough for even your tallest passengers, and the trunk is wide and deep with above-average 14.3 cubic feet of cargo storage.

The Corolla comes with a 7.0-inch touchscreen, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto capabilities. The XSE hatchback is the best value with 18-inch wheels, synthetic leather upholstery, power heated front seats, fog lights, and dual-zone automatic climate control.

The Toyota Corolla offers ample room in the front seat, but the seats in the back are less than comfy and are cramped. The hatchback Corolla offers more cargo volume with 18 cubic feet compared to 13.1 in the base sedan.

Safety Features

All Sentras come standard with a host of active safety features including:

  • Automatic emergency braking
  • Blind-spot monitors
  • Lane departure warnings
  • Rear cross-traffic alerts
  • High beam assist
  • Driver attention monitor

Toyota also equips all Corollas with standard safety features including:

  • Automatic emergency braking
  • Adaptive cruise control
  • High beam assist
  • Active lane control
  • Automatic high beams
  • Road sign assist

Both of these compacts are of great value due to their safety features!

Bottom Line

With 90 years of combined experience in the compact sedan market, the Nissan Sentra and the Toyota Corolla have been competitors for decades. Both are highly efficient, sporty compact sedans that are fun and safe to drive!

In the end, these compacts are quite similar and if you want a little more sportiness, roominess in the cabin, and value, the 2021 Nissan Sentra is the obvious choice.

Test Drive a Compact Sedan

Ready to get behind the wheel of the safe and sporty Nissan Sentra? Visit Maus Nissan of New Port Richey today! With numerous safety features and a sporty overall design, the Nissan Sentra is hard to beat! Contact us to learn more about our financing options or to schedule your test drive!

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