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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 A3 Sedan doesn’t offer a whiplash protection 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 A3 Sedan 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 A3 Sedan 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 A3 Sedan have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, post-collision automatic braking systems, daytime running lights and rearview cameras.
Toyota’s powertrain warranty covers the Corolla Hybrid 1 year and 10,000 miles longer than Audi covers the A3 Sedan. Any repair needed on the engine, transmission, axles, joints or driveshafts is fully covered for 5 years or 60,000 miles. Coverage on the A3 Sedan ends after only 4 years or 50,000 miles.
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. Audi only pays for the first scheduled maintenance visit on the A3 Sedan.
There are over 4 times as many Toyota dealers as there are Audi dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Corolla Hybrid’s warranty.
The A3 Sedan’s redline is at 6300 RPM, which causes more engine wear, and a greater chance of a catastrophic engine failure. The Corolla Hybrid has a 4000 RPM redline.
A reliable vehicle saves its owner time, money and trouble. Nobody wants to be stranded or have to be without a vehicle while it’s being repaired. Consumer Reports rates the Corolla Hybrid’s reliability 28 points higher than the A3 Sedan.
J.D. Power and Associates rated the Corolla Hybrid second among compact cars in their 2019 Initial Quality Study. The A3 Sedan isn’t in the top three in its category.
J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Toyota vehicles are better in initial quality than Audi vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Toyota 8th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 16 more problems per 100 vehicles, Audi is ranked 22nd, below the industry average.
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 Audi vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Toyota second in reliability, above the industry average. With 16 more problems per 100 vehicles, Audi is ranked 8th.
From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2019 Auto Issue reports that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Audi vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Toyota third in reliability. Audi is ranked 14th.
On the EPA test cycle the Corolla Hybrid gets better fuel mileage than the A3 Sedan FWD (53 city/52 hwy vs. 27 city/36 hwy).
Regenerative brakes improve the Corolla Hybrid’s fuel efficiency by converting inertia back into energy instead of wasting it. The A3 Sedan doesn’t offer a regenerative braking system.
To lower fuel costs and make buying fuel easier, the Toyota Corolla Hybrid uses regular unleaded gasoline. The A3 Sedan 45 TFSI requires premium for maximum efficiency, which can cost 20 to 55 cents more per gallon.
The Corolla Hybrid has a standard continuously variable transmission (CVT). With no “steps” between gears, it can keep the engine at the most efficient speed for fuel economy, or keep it at its peak horsepower indefinitely for maximum acceleration. The A3 Sedan doesn’t offer a CVT.
For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Corolla Hybrid’s wheelbase is 2.5 inches longer than on the A3 Sedan (106.3 inches vs. 103.8 inches).
For better maneuverability, the Corolla Hybrid’s turning circle is 2 feet tighter than the A3 Sedan’s (34.1 feet vs. 36.1 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 significantly lower than the A3 Sedan (.33) and many sports cars. A more efficient exterior helps keep the interior quieter and helps the Corolla Hybrid get better fuel mileage.
Because it has more passenger and cargo room, the EPA rates the Corolla Hybrid a Compact car, while the A3 Sedan is rated a Subcompact.
The Corolla Hybrid has 2.6 cubic feet more passenger volume than the A3 Sedan (88.6 vs. 86).
The Corolla Hybrid has 1.8 inches more front headroom, 1.1 inches more front legroom, 1 inch more rear headroom and 1.8 inches more rear shoulder room than the A3 Sedan.
The Corolla Hybrid has a larger trunk than the A3 Sedan (13.1 vs. 12.3 cubic feet).
The Corolla Hybrid’s cruise control switch is lit from behind, making it plainly visible and easier to operate at night. The A3 Sedan’s cruise control switches are unlit, making them difficult to find at night and operate safely.
Both are recommended, but Consumer Reports® chose the Toyota Corolla Hybrid as its “Top Pick,” the highest scoring vehicle in its category, based on reliability, safety and performance.
The Toyota Corolla outsold the Audi A3/S3/RS 3 by over 29 to one during 2019.
© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.
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