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The Corolla Hatchback has standard Whiplash Injury Lessening Seats (WIL), which use a specially designed seat to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the WIL system allows the backrest to travel backwards to cushion the occupants and the headrests move forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The Seltos doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.
The Corolla Hatchback has a standard Secondary Collision Brake, which automatically applies the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The Seltos doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.
Both the Corolla Hatchback and the Seltos have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, rearview cameras and available blind spot warning systems.
For its top level performance in IIHS driver and passenger-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, roof strength and head restraint tests, its standard vehicle-to-vehicle front crash prevention system, its standard vehicle-to-pedestrian front crash prevention system, and its available headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Corolla Hatchback the rating of “Top Pick” for 2020, a rating granted to only 30 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Seltos has not been tested, yet.
The Corolla Hatchback’s 5 year corrosion warranty has no mileage limitations, but the corrosion warranty on the Seltos runs out after 100,000 miles.
Toyota pays for scheduled maintenance on the Corolla Hatchback for 2 years and 25000 miles. Toyota will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Kia doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Seltos.
There are over 63 percent more Toyota dealers than there are Kia dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Corolla Hatchback’s warranty.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Kia vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Toyota second in reliability, above the industry average. With 18 more problems per 100 vehicles, Kia is ranked 10th.
From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2019 Auto Issue reports that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Kia vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Toyota third in reliability. Kia is ranked 9th.
The Corolla Hatchback’s 2.0 DOHC 4-cylinder produces 22 more horsepower (168 vs. 146) and 19 lbs.-ft. more torque (151 vs. 132) than the Seltos’ standard 2.0 DOHC 4-cylinder.
On the EPA test cycle the Corolla Hatchback SE CVT gets better fuel mileage than the Seltos FWD CVT with its standard engine (32 city/41 hwy vs. 29 city/34 hwy).
For better stopping power the Corolla Hatchback’s standard brake rotors are larger than those on the Seltos:
The Corolla Hatchback XSE/Nightshade’s tires provide better handling because they have a lower 40 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Seltos Turbo’s 45 series tires.
For superior ride and handling, the Toyota Corolla Hatchback has fully independent front and rear suspensions. An independent suspension allows the wheels to follow the road at the best angle for gripping the pavement, without compromising ride comfort. The Seltos 4x2 has a rear torsion beam axle, with a semi-independent rear suspension.
The Corolla Hatchback has vehicle speed sensitive variable-assist power steering, for low-effort parking, better control at highway speeds and during hard cornering, and a better feel of the road. The Seltos doesn’t offer variable-assist power steering.
The Corolla Hatchback has .6 inches more front legroom and .4 inches more front hip room than the Seltos.
The Corolla Hatchback’s power parking brake sets with one touch and releases with one touch or automatically. The Seltos has a lever-type parking brake that has to be strenuously raised to engage properly. It has to be lifted up more and a button depressed to release it.
The Corolla Hatchback’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Seltos’ standard power window switches have to be held the entire time to close them fully. Only its driver’s window opens automatically.
If the windows are left open on the Corolla Hatchback the driver can close them all at the outside door handle. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows at the outside door handle or from a distance using the keyless remote. (This window function must be activated by your Toyota service department.) The driver of the Seltos can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.
To help drivers see further while navigating curves, the Corolla Hatchback XSE offers optional adaptive headlights to illuminate around corners automatically by reading vehicle speed and steering wheel angle. The Seltos doesn’t offer cornering lights.
The Corolla Hatchback’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Kia only offers heated mirrors on the Seltos S/EX/SX.
The Corolla Hatchback XSE’s standard dual zone air conditioning allows the driver and front passenger to choose two completely different temperatures so people with different temperature preferences won’t have to compromise. This makes both the driver and front passenger as comfortable as possible. The Seltos doesn’t offer dual zone air conditioning.
The Toyota Corolla comes in sedan and four door hatchback bodystyles; the Kia Seltos isn’t available as a sedan or four door hatchback.
Consumer Reports® chose the Toyota Corolla Hatchback as its “Top Pick,” the highest scoring vehicle in its category, based on reliability, safety and performance.
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