The all-new Toyota Corolla is set to be launched in India in less than a month's time with both a petrol and a diesel engine. We take a detailed look.
The Toyota Corolla, sold since 1966, is the world’s best-selling car to date. With over 40 million Corollas sold worldwide, the iconic marquee is available in 150 countries with factories for the same spread across 16 locations worldwide. The Toyota factory in Bidadi, near Bangalore, produces the Indian and exports versions of the same and soon will make the all-new 2014 model year Toyota Corolla. Currently in its 11th generation worldwide and 3rd generation in India the Corolla is expected to be launched in May.
The new corolla will feature Toyota’s new design philosophy. The new car at 4,620mm long, 1,775mm wide and 1,465mm high, the new Toyota is 80mm longer and 15mm wider, yet 5mm lower, than its predecessor. The design, highlighting the added length gives the new Corolla a more mature and contemporary look. The swept back headlamps that fuse into the grille add to the premium look of the car. The headlight unit itself is highly detailed with a 4-LED daytime running light setup and a double barrel cluster. Compared to the current version, the new Corolla features a lot more chrome both on the distinctive and large grille and on the headlamp unit making it look more expensive than it is.
Along the side, the shorter overhangs, both on the front section and the rear help give the new Corolla a much sportier stance than before. A distinctive character line that runs from the top of the front wheelarch to the rear lamp cluster helps enhance the sporty stance. The new Corolla will come with both 15- and 16-inch wheel options. The rear of the new Corolla has a clean but wide look. The Toyota X-design influences are present here too with a lot of Lexus-esque design references especially for the tail lamps.
On the interior front, the new Toyota Corolla is much bigger than its predecessor due to a 100mm longer wheelbase. The dashboard itself looks uncluttered and the new design is further emphasised by a silver accent piece, which separates the dashboard into upper and lower zones and continues across the top of the door panels. The vertical front door grips too are finished in the same high gloss silver. Depending on the model, the new Corolla will come with either a two dial or three dial instrument cluster, with the more expensive versions incorporating the two-dial setup with a large central screen. The dashboard is dominated by a large touch screen infotainment system, which incorporates navigation and entertainment systems.
The new 2014 Toyota Corolla will be available with two engine options: a 4-cylinder 1.4-litre D-4D turbocharged diesel and a 1.8-litre, 4-cylinder, petrol VVT-i engine. Internationally, the Toyota Corolla is also available with a 1.3-litre VVT-i, 1.6-litre VVT-i and a 1.6-litre ‘Valvematic’ engine however these are unlikely to make it to Indian shores. The new Toyota Corolla will be available with both manual and automatic gearboxes.
The 1.4-litre D-4 diesel engine, likely to be the popular choice for most customers, makes 90PS of peak power and 205Nm of peak torque. With peak torque available as low as 1800rpm, the diesel Corolla promises to be extremely fuel-efficient. The petrol powered Corolla, powered by the 1.8-litre VVT-I engine makes 140PS of peak power and 173Nm of torque. The petrol and diesel will come with either a six-speed manual gearbox or Toyota’s new six-speed MultiMode automatic transmission. All the new Toyota Corolla engines will be Euro five compliant and will be available as standard with start-stop technology.
As we mentioned earlier, the new 2014 Corolla features a longer wheelbase and a lower roofline. The resulting lower centre of gravity along with improved aerodynamic performance and a more rigid body construction means that the new Corolla will handle better than before. Although a similar system as the outgoing Corolla, the MacPherson struts up front and the torsion beam suspension at the rear has gone through significant changes to improve both ride and handling of the upcoming Corolla. Judging from Corolla’s past, expect the ride to be plush and comfortable while still inspiring confidence in terms of high-speed dynamics. Toyota has also re-engineered the electronic power steering setup to make it more involving for the driver.
Toyota India has sold over 88,000 units of the Toyota Corolla in India. With the new Corolla’s interesting and refreshing new look, a crucial aspect for most people considering a car in this segment, the new 2014 Toyota Corolla may very well be able to reverse the trend of falling sales in the D-segment. The new Corolla will take on the Hyundai Elantra, the Skoda Octavia and the Chevrolet Cruze. Toyota has begun accepting bookings and will launch and start delivering the first batch of cars by end of May 2014. Expect the new Corolla to be priced between Rs 13-19 lakh ex-showroom.