Toyota Corolla station wagon and hatchback, which Israelis will only be able to see in a video (Toyota)
Shoichiro Toyoda 1925-2023 (Photo: Toyota)
from about NIS 150,000 for gasoline, from NIS 160,000 for the hybrid
fuel consumption and performance in the hybrid, ease of operation and human engineering
We didn't like:
interior space, stop importing the station wagon
At the beginning of the week, 97-year-old Soichiro Toyoda died in Japan.
The son of the company's founder, Kiichiro Toyoda, and the father of its current CEO and president, Akio Toyoda.
Shoichiro was "Mr. Toyota" during his time as chairman, the company overtook the American General Motors and became the largest car manufacturer in the world, which was seen My imagination about 50 years before in Japan the destruction after Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
Even before that, he was the man who approved, among other things, the establishment of Lexus and the development of the Toyota Prius, the world's first successful hybrid, which became an icon for environmental and technology enthusiasts.
The 12th generation Corolla was the one that marked Shuichiro Toyoda's project going mainstream, when it was the first Corolla with a hybrid drive.
Now it receives its first facelift, which includes the implantation of the fifth generation of Toyota's hybrid drive, which was already revealed to the world in the new crossover model, Corolla Cross.
New but familiar?
The Corolla sedan received the driver's environment of the Corolla Cross (photo: Toyota)
The design has hardly changed, except for new front and rear lights.
The driver's environment has been upgraded a little more, with specifications also taken from the crossover, with a multimedia screen that has grown from 9 inches to 10.5 inches and a 12.3 inch digital dashboard.
The operation is simple and efficient and Toyota continues to be one of the only righteous in the industry that does not move the climate control operation to a hidden screen, but instead leaves it with separate switches in the center of the console.
There are also color updates that we won't get, like light-colored plastics that brighten up the passenger compartment a bit.
Toyota is launching the sporty GR in the European Corolla as a trim level only, without the added power and handling improvements of models like the Yaris GR, but only a different nose, red stitching on the seats, and more.
She won't come to us either.
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There is an air conditioner outlet and USB sockets.
There is less space (Photo: Toyota)
Since it is a facelift, there is no change in the facial space, for example.
In front everything is fine, but in the back the Corolla is already losing in the centimeter race against the Hyundai Elantra and the Skoda Octavia, mainly in the width of the seat, but also in the knee space.
The trunk has the same 470 liters of volume, respectable for a sedan.
The Corolla station wagon that will stop arriving (photo: Toyota)
And the disappointing news for many of the potential customers: only the sedan will come to Israel from now on.
The useful station wagon, which was a great success in vehicle fleets, will no longer be imported, Toyota Israel claims that they did not receive an allocation from the manufacturer.
Do you want a Corolla with a large and comfortable trunk for transporting bicycles?
Add money to Corolla Cross.
The hatchback version will no longer arrive either.
Slight changes are also made to the rear lights, so that you can identify in traffic who got a new Corolla (Photo: Toyota)
The Corolla will continue to arrive in Israel in three trim levels.
SUN will be the only one that will also be offered with a 1,500 cc (125 hp) gasoline engine for those looking for the cheapest family car or who are still afraid of electric motors, with light 16-inch rims, a 12.3-inch digital dashboard, a 9-inch multimedia screen in the installation Native with Bluetooth, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, front split climate control with rear seat air conditioner outlet, smart key, and 2 front and 2 rear USB ports.
There is also a spare wheel, which is not available in the hybrid versions.
SENSE is already hybrid only, as mentioned.
The equipment is similar to the SUN, except for an upgrade to the original multimedia with a 10.5-inch screen, electrically folding side mirrors and wireless Apple CarPlay.
The Limited is the well-equipped hybrid, which upgrades to light 17-inch wheels and an electric sunroof.
The safety specification includes in all of them full active safety with autonomous emergency braking, adaptive cruise control with the possibility of overtaking at a signal, lane keeping and detection of pedestrians and bicycles day and night.
The Limited also has blind spot detection.
But even here the classic Corolla is showing its age: it has 7 airbags but not the eighth one that pops up during an accident between the driver and the passenger in front, and is present in the Corolla Cross.
A 14% increase in power is definitely noticeable (Photo: Toyota)
The gasoline version did not settle for launch.
The 1,800 cc hybrid received a power upgrade from 121 to 140 hp, an answer to criticism of its performance in the original version, which shortened the official acceleration figure from 0 to 100 km/h from 10.8 to a decent 9.1 km/h .
The engine now runs at 500 rpm lower, and the recharging also comes into play as a safety measure, for example when the system detects a too fast entry into a turn and uses it to slow down the vehicle, while charging the battery. On the road, the addition is definitely noticeable. Also in a faster response to pressing the
pedal , even with faster detour accelerations, and even with a less excessive noise level during accelerations than the continuous box.
Toyota claims that the increased power did not prevent an improvement in fuel consumption from 22.2 to 22.7 km per liter.
In the combined test drive, which is more challenging than daily driving, it achieved 13.5 km per liter.
The adaptive cruise control also now works more smoothly, and is more similar to the driving of a human rather than a computer,
The road behavior continues to be safe and efficient, but still lacks excitement and feeling.
The Corolla will do anything you ask with almost no tire squeal, but sportiness continues to be there.
The ride comfort is good.
But the time has come for streetcars, Toyota (Photo: Toyota)
I don't know if Shoichiro Toyoda got to drive the Corolla 12.1, but I'm sure he was proud of the result.
This is the best Corolla ever, efficient and economical than ever before.
Although the price is expected to continue to increase from NIS 160,000 for the hybrid, and a little less than NIS 150,000 for gasoline.
But in 2023 a hybrid family is no longer really news.
Toyota continues to explain that a hybrid system is the most efficient method of utilizing the limited global production capacity of batteries.
that instead of producing one electric car with a 100 kWh battery, it is better to build 90 hybrid cars with a 1.1 kWh battery like the Corolla, and further improve the average emissions.
This is a reasoning that Toyota has been repeating for years as part of the mantra not to invest in a fully electric vehicle, and wait for hydrogen.
And this is also reasoning that has expired in light of the industry's accelerated transition, encouraged by regulators in Europe and the US, to an electric vehicle. Toyota itself showed us its plans to increase electric vehicle sales to 10% of sales in 2025, to 50% in 2030 and -100% in 2035.
Even in Israel, when the redesigned Corolla lands in April, it will have to chase, among other things, electric cars like BYD Eto 3 and Geely Geometric C, which more and more family drivers prefer today. Now a project for a revolutionary green car that will sweep away customers and competitors? Right now it definitely needs both.
The writer was a guest of Toyota in Spain
On the technical side: Toyota Corolla hybrid sedan
1,798 cc, gasoline-electric. Front-
wheel drive. Power/torque:
22.7 km per liter
Test fuel consumption:
13.5 km m per liter
European crash test score:
5 out of 5 stars
emergency braking, cruise control, lane keeping, automatic high beam
100 g CO2 per km, pollution group 3 out of 15
3 years or 100,000 km for the vehicle, 5 years or 100,000 km for the battery
Hyundai Elantra, Skoda Octavia