THE CHANGE: Toyota departed from its normal play-it-safe redesign philosophy to roll out a sleek-looking, sportier version of the Corolla compact. The car was unveiled Thursday night, and will reach showrooms in September.
THE REASON: The Corolla was last redesigned in 2008, and its age is showing. It's still the top-selling U.S. compact. But Toyota has had to cut prices against intense competition from Detroit automakers, Hyundai and Honda.
WHAT'S NEW: The 2014 Corolla is longer and wider with more interior room. It gets a new transmission, better sound insulation, a beefed-up suspension, updated electronics and nicer interior materials.