Toyota's Corolla has for the past few decades been a very important car for the local market, apart from it being assembled in their plant just outside Durban, it has been a key vehicle for the company as it was one of the models to drive their sales. With the recent adaptations of the out going models taking on the Quest badge, offering a similar vehicle but with less of the luxury additions, it's seen managed to core in another market for sales for the Japanese motor manufacturer, leaving the Corolla to take on a more luxurious appeal to consumers. With that, the all-new Corolla which was launched last year February to the local market saw a much more refined model hitting the market, built on the latest TNGA platform and being fully imported, it the first time in a long time the local consumer was getting a mid ranged vehicle from the brand that was not assembled locally. There definitely is a lot of Euro influence in the styling and the quality in build and materials was noticeable instantly. It was also the first time South Africa was introduced to the "Corolla Hatch" as previously the naming convention was always different for the Corolla with no boot, Conquest, RunX Auris, Auris X but Toyota chose to ditch that idea and simply call it for what it was.
A year on now, and finally South Africans are getting to see the all-new Corolla Sedan, from what I can see so far, it was definitely worth the weight. With the hatchback variant already receiving rave reviews from all over, the sedan will surely get the same sort of views, with the car boasting enhanced driving dynamics and ride comfort, as well as a comprehensive suite of driver assistance safety features, a first for a Corolla. The car also comes with all the latest technological additions like other models on the market with built-in Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, making it a very attractive offering in the C segment.
Pricing for the new Corolla is also very attractive with it being offered in 2 engine variants with a manual option as well as a new 10-speed continuously variable transmission, not how I negated to abbreviate that one as CVT is seen like a curse word in the industry but I take my hat off to Toyota, when it was first introduced, it was a terrible but they've stuck to their guns and persisted with the system, fine tuning it to the product they have today and after sampling it in the CH-R, I cannot fault it. The gearbox assists not only the engine but manages your fuel consumption so well, it will leave your bank balance with a big smile.
The range topping model will be the Corolla XR which comes with the new TNGA 2.0L petrol engine which produces 125kW and 200Nm or torque will be offered in a 6-speed manual or the 10 speed auto box, the mid-range XS will be equipped with the 104kW 1.8L petrol engine which only comes with the CVT gearbox. Other noticeable features for the new Corolla sedan are Smart Entry, Bi-LED headlights with auto high beam assist, 19-inch laser cut rims, electrochromatic rear-view mirror, Toyota's Safety System which includes Pre-Crash activation, Blind Spot Monitor, Adaptive All-Speed Cruise Control and Lane Departue Alert. The Corolla brand has really come a long way and Toyota are really proud of these 3 models that are making their entry to the country and with good reason. It's been a firm favourite with the locals for a long time and with the arrival of this new one, I cannot see anything changing. The cars are well priced, well equipped and they look stunning.
Prices and Specs
- Corolla 1.8 XS CVT - R372,700
- Corolla 2.0 XR manual - R412,300
- Corolla 2.0 XR CVT - R425,200