Toyota has never been known for building fun to drive vehicles. The Corolla is no exception to this. Although you can get a sporty looking S-trim. There really isn't much fun behind the wheel. With stiff competition from Honda and Kia, will Toyota be able to keep up? Or is this another case of old dog - old tricks?
Likes: Excellent fit and finish, fuel economy, smooth ride comfort.
Dislikes: Dull driving experience, base trim feels rather stingy on features.
Performance: There's only one engine available for the Corolla, and that's a 1.8-liter four-cylinder with 138hp. It offers a good amount of pace around town and on the motorway. Fuel economy is also good too. Power hungry may want to look elsewhere, as there's no powerful engine options to match the sporty looks of the S trim.
Ride & Handling: The Corolla feels solid and comfortable when driven gently. Handling isn't sporty, and doesn't encourage you to drive aggressively. The suspension is set more towards comfort rather than agility. So there's bodyroll in turns, but its far from annoying.
Refinement: The Corolla has excellent refinement on the motorway. There's very little wind and road noise. You'll enjoy how smooth and quiet the ride comfort is. The engine operates smoothly, and is quiet at most speeds.
Behind the wheel: The dashboard has a no nonsense layout. Everything feels logically placed and user friendly. The seats adjust for both reach and height. The controls are easy to use and the quality feels rock solid.
Space & Practicality: There's enough room for five adults in the Corolla. There's plenty of head and legroom for both front and rear passengers. There's plenty of boot space as well. The rear seats fold down 60/40 for additional space.
Equipment: The Corolla is priced well among its rivals, but the base trim level loses out on central locking and power windows. You'll have to step up to the higher trims to get features that should be standard across the range. There are rivals that offer them for less than the Corolla.
Buying & Owning: The Corolla holds its value well, so your investments are well secured. The base trim doesn't feel like much of a value, and the sporty looking S trim doesn't feel as sporty as its looks suggest. However, your fuel bill will be low and build quality will be excellent.
Quality & Reliability: All the plastics used feel long lasting. There's a sense of durability behind the interior quality. Reliability should be excellent, as the Corolla has been rated high by its owners in the JD Power survey.
Safety & Security: All Corollas come with an array of safety features standard. ESP, ABS and side curtian airbags come standard across the range. An engine immobiliser comes standard across the range, but you'll have to step up to the higher trims to get deadlocks.
The Corolla has rock solid reliability and feels very well built. It's dependable and offers excellent fuel economy. For those seeking something that's fun to drive may want to venture else where. But for the few that want a car that's aimed at quality and dependability, the Corolla is the car for you.