We explore the new Toyota Corolla “hatch”

The trusty and reliable Toyota Corolla, a favourite on South Africa’s roads, now comes in a sexy new version: A hatchback. Toyota has done a lot of work on their new cars in terms of quality of materials and styling upgrades and the new Corolla hatchback looks fantastic with sporty bumpers, wheels and spoilers. The hatchback features a new range of engines as well as a completely new CVT transmission along with a 60 percent stiffer body with improved the weight balance between the front and rear.

The Corolla hatchback comes with three different engine variations. The smallest engine is a 1.2 litre turbocharged petrol that produces 85Kw/185Nm. Next up is a 1.8 litre hybrid that helps get more power from an electric battery, which at low speeds can be used alone without the engine to improve fuel consumption. The range topping 2.0 litre petrol manages to kick out 125kW/200Nm.

Toyota has made use of a completely new CVT transmission, a 6-speed manual version is available with rev matching technology. The automatic version has a 10-speed sequential shift, along with a mechanical launch gear and a choice between three different drive modes: sport, normal and eco.

Pricing for the new Corolla will start @R336 800 for the Icon model and just over the R400 000 mark for the range topping Excel model. (Prices correct at time of publication.)

The new Corolla hatchback comes with a choice of three different trim levels being: The Icon, Icon Tech and range topping Excel. The interior is modern and has been well designed, the “excel” is the range topping version and has options such as keyless entry, sport seats, 18-inch alloy wheels, wireless phone charger, LED ambient lighting and even head-up display. These options are not available on the icon and icon tech models.  The Toyota Corolla has many useful extras such as: an 8-inch infotainment touchscreen, heated seats with adjustable lumbar support, dual-zone climate control, cruise control, lane assist, parking sensors, reversing camera, auto-park, navigation and full digital display. 

Toyota has decided to beef up the safety of the new Corolla by adding a pre-collision safety system and pedestrian detection. The new model Corolla comes with knee, side, front and curtain airbags, ABS with brake assist, stability control and ISOfix child restraint anchors. Due to all the added safety features the Toyota Corolla hatchback manages to score an impressive 5-star safety rating.

Verdict for the Toyota Corolla Hatch

The Toyota Corolla hatchback is great family car, it has good safety features, appealing looks, excellent build quality and some modern luxuries. Overall, the Toyota Corolla is a practical, reliable and modern hatchback. We think it was the right time for Toyota to release the Corolla hatch as there is a big market for hatchbacks in South Africa at the moment, and the Toyota Corolla should definitely make a big impact in this segment.

If you’re looking for a new family car, remember to do your research! The car reviews section on our blog is a good place to start – every month we review two of the latest automotive models to hit SA roads.

Please note the imagery supplied in this blog was taken off the toyota.co.za website and is for illustrative purposes only.  

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