Just as the 11th generation Toyota Corolla was getting ‘long in the grille’, the latest generation emerges in the nick of time to ensure no one forgets the nameplate.
From the grille to the tailpipes, the 12th generation Toyota Corolla brings all kinds of automotive sleekness. Its flared fenders, large lower grille and wide stance adds dynamism to the look of the sedan. The wing mirrors, in particular, have moved from the A-pillar to the door panel, which makes checking the rear easier than before.
Off the blocks, UMW Toyota only offers two Corolla variants, the 1.8G and the 1.8E with a price difference of RM8,000 in between. For the record, the 1.8G is priced at RM136,888, and the 1.8E is yours for RM128,888.
The Corolla will is only offered with a 1.8-litre engine with the 2.0-litre nowhere in sight. The engine is a familiar one, codenamed 2ZR-FE, with outputs of 137ps at 6,400rpm and 173Nm at 4,000rpm. Power gets delivered to the front wheels through the also-familiar seven-speed Sequential Shiftmatic (a fancy name for a CVT).
There are no official 0-100kph times, but Toyota clocked ‘passing acceleration’ times of 40-60kph in 3.4 seconds and 60-80kph in 3.3 seconds. The new Corolla comes with two drive modes, ECO and SPORT, which alters the engine characteristics to do just as the label says.
The new Corolla is built on the Toyota New Global Architecture and it sits on MacPherson struts in the front and double wishbones in the rear. If this is anywhere like the CH-R, you can expect better than average handling.
The interior design, without a doubt, feels contemporary. Like other vehicles that appeared in years past, the Corolla’s interior has done away with much of the functional buttons and switches. More importantly, the air-con controls are within reach and don’t take long to memorise each of its functions.
Smacked in the middle of the dashboard is a touch-screen media system that’s hooked up to six speakers. The media hosts most of the functions that you’d expect, except that it does has USB mirroring instead of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Also, the Corolla comes with a wireless charging pad.
In keeping with the times, the Corolla is launched with a system known as Toyota Safety Sense, or TSS. The TSS consists of five systems, the Pre-Collision System (PCS), Lane Departure Alert (LDA) with Steering Assist, Lane Tracing Assist (LTA), Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (DRCC) and Automatic High Beam (AHB).
Joining the alphabet soup of safety systems are Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) with Traction Control, ABS, Hill-start Assist Control, Tyre Pressure Warning System and seven SRS airbags.
Opt for the 1.8G; your Corolla will come with the Blind Spot Monitor, Electronic Parking Brake and Brake Hold Feature. Apart from that, the higher-specced model also comes with two Digital Video Recorders, front and back. The DVR is not available on the 1.8E as standard but as a cost-option.
To prevent theft, all Corollas gets armed with an Alarm System with Immobilizer, Siren with Back-up Battery, Cabin Sensor and Speed Auto Door Lock. Additionally, you can also opt for the Vehicle Telematics System (VTS) that uses GPS/GSM to track the location of your car. VTS makes it easier — and faster — for the authorities to recover your vehicle. The VTS also lets you monitor and record vehicle speeds and other operating conditions that the car has gone through. The data is sent to a designated user via email.
We’ve spent some time behind the wheel of the new Corolla and drove the new sedan up the mountain. We will have the preview of the new Toyota Corolla posted very soon.