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The Corolla Hybrid has standard Whiplash Injury Lessening Seats, which use a specially designed seat to protect the driver and front passenger from whiplash. During a rear-end collision, the Whiplash Injury Lessening Seats system allows the backrest to travel backwards to cushion the occupants and the headrests move forward to prevent neck and spine injuries. The Sentra doesn’t offer a whiplash protection system.
The Corolla Hybrid 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 Sentra 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.
The Toyota Corolla Hybrid has Daytime Running Lights to help keep it more visible under all conditions. Canadian government studies show that driving with lights during the day reduces accidents by 11% by making vehicles more conspicuous. The Sentra doesn’t offer Daytime Running Lights.
The Corolla Hybrid’s lane departure warning system alerts a temporarily inattentive driver when the vehicle begins to leave its lane and gently nudges the vehicle back towards its lane. The Sentra doesn’t offer a lane departure warning system.
The Corolla Hybrid’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Sentra doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.
The Corolla Hybrid has standard Safety Connect, which uses a global positioning satellite (GPS) receiver and a cellular system to help track down your vehicle if it’s stolen or send emergency personnel to the scene if any airbags deploy. The Sentra doesn’t offer a GPS response system, only a navigation computer with no live response for emergencies, so if you’re involved in an accident and you’re incapacitated help may not come as quickly.
Both the Corolla Hybrid and the Sentra 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, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding and rearview cameras.
Toyota pays for scheduled maintenance on the Corolla Hybrid for 2 years and 25000 miles. Toyota will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Nissan doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Sentra.
There are over 13 percent more Toyota dealers than there are Nissan dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the Corolla Hybrid’s warranty.
The Sentra’s redline is at 6400 RPM, which causes more engine wear, and a greater chance of a catastrophic engine failure. The Corolla Hybrid has a 4000 RPM redline.
J.D. Power and Associates rated the Corolla Hybrid first among compact cars in their 2018 Initial Quality Study. The Sentra isn’t in the top three.
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 Nissan vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Toyota second in reliability, above the industry average. With 29 more problems per 100 vehicles, Nissan is ranked 15th.
From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Nissan vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Toyota second in reliability. Nissan is ranked 14th.
On the EPA test cycle the Corolla Hybrid gets better fuel mileage than the Sentra Auto (53 city/52 hwy vs. 29 city/37 hwy).
Regenerative brakes improve the Corolla Hybrid’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The Sentra doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.
In heavy traffic or at stoplights the Corolla Hybrid’s engine automatically turns off when the vehicle is stopped, saving fuel and reducing pollution. The engine is automatically restarted when the driver gets ready to move again. (Start/Stop isn’t accounted in present EPA fuel mileage tests.) The Sentra doesn’t offer an automatic engine start/stop system.
The Toyota Corolla Hybrid comes standard with an automatic transmission, for driver comfort, especially in the city. Automatic costs extra on the Sentra.
The Toyota Corolla Hybrid has standard four-wheel disc brakes for better stopping power and improved directional control in poor weather. Rear drums are standard on the Sentra. Drums can heat up and make stops longer, especially with antilock brakes that work much harder than conventional brakes.
For superior ride and handling, the Toyota Corolla Hybrid 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 Nissan Sentra has a rear torsion beam axle, with a semi-independent rear suspension.
For better maneuverability, the Corolla Hybrid’s turning circle is .7 feet tighter than the Sentra’s (34.1 feet vs. 34.8 feet).
The design of the Toyota Corolla Hybrid amounts to more than styling. The Corolla Hybrid has an aerodynamic coefficient of drag of .28 Cd. That is lower than the Sentra (.29 to .3) and many sports cars. A more efficient exterior helps keep the interior quieter and helps the Corolla Hybrid get better fuel mileage.
The Corolla Hybrid has 2.1 inches more front hip room, .1 inches more front shoulder room, .4 inches more rear headroom and .9 inches more rear shoulder room than the Sentra.
A low lift-over trunk design makes loading and unloading the Corolla Hybrid easier. The Corolla Hybrid’s trunk lift-over height is 25.5 inches, while the Sentra’s liftover is 27.1 inches.
A maintenance reminder system is standard on the Corolla Hybrid to save the owner time and money by calculating maintenance intervals based on odometer mileage. This takes the guesswork out of keeping your vehicle in top condition and helps it last longer. Nissan doesn’t offer a maintenance reminder on the Sentra.
The power windows standard on both the Corolla Hybrid and the Sentra have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the Corolla Hybrid is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The Sentra prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.
The Corolla Hybrid’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 Sentra’s passenger windows don’t open or close automatically.
If the windows are left open on the Corolla Hybrid 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. (Your Toyota service department must activate this window function.) The driver of the Sentra can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.
While driving with high beams on, sensitive light sensors standard on the Corolla Hybrid detect other vehicles which could be blinded and automatically switch to low beams. The Sentra doesn’t offer automatic dimming high beams.
The Corolla Hybrid’s standard outside mirrors include heating elements to clear off the mirrors for better visibility. Heated mirrors cost extra on the Sentra and aren’t offered on the Sentra S.
The Corolla Hybrid’s power mirror controls are mounted on the armrest for easy access. The Sentra’s power mirror controls are on the dash where they are possibly hidden by the steering wheel and are awkward to manipulate.
© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.
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