The new Toyota Corolla Hatchback Hybrid

2019 Toyota Corolla Hatchback Hybrid Review

The new Toyota Corolla Hatchback Hybrid
The new Toyota Corolla Hatchback Hybrid

Caroline drives the new Toyota Corolla Hatchback!

Late last year, Toyota Ireland promised a ‘hybrid invasion’ in 2019. It’s not surprising they were feeling confident – this year new cars from the Toyota brand have been arriving thick and fast, including the new generation of the RAV4 Hybrid and the return of the Camry.

But 2019 has also seen the arrival of a new generation of the Toyota Corolla, one of Ireland’s best-loved cars. The Corolla family – hatchback, saloon and estate – are all available now as hybrids. It was time I took this new Toyota Corolla Hybrid for a test drive!

Ever since Toyota Global President, Akio Toyoda, declared "no more boring cars!" from the brand, there has been something of a renaissance underway at Toyota. That’s thanks to Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA) that is underpinning this new generation of models.

Available from €24,380 with a 1.2-litre petrol engine or from €26,370 as a petrol electric, self-charging hybrid, the new Toyota Corolla Hatchback is pitched as the compact, sporty one within the new Corolla family. Certainly, the new Corolla Hatchback has undergone a terrific makeover. The new Corolla Hatchback is longer and lower than the Auris Hatchback it replaces, with a snug, sporty stance on the road. Exclusive to the segment, there are also four optional bi-tone colour schemes available from launch. They combine the body colour with a metallic black finish to the roof, roof front and rear pillars, and the door mirrors.

The Toyota Corolla Hatchback range goes on sale from €24,,380 in Ireland
The Toyota Corolla Hatchback range goes on sale from €24,,380 in Ireland

Equipment and interior

The new Toyota Corolla Hatchback is offered in Ireland in three grades: Aura, Luna (from €26,995), Luna Sport (from €29,620) and Sol (from €30,115). Standard equipment includes 16″ alloys, Toyota Safety Sense including adaptive cruise control and lane trace assist, LED headlights/fog lights and 8″ Toyota Touch. My Corolla 1.8 Hybrid Luna Sport model had a list price of €29,620 and features included rear view camera, Toyota Touch® 2 multimedia system, bi beam LED headlamps, LED front fog lamps, 17” black machined alloys, black contrasting roof, black roof spoiler, rear privacy glass, red dashboard trim and blue ambient lighting.

The design and quality of the interior of the new Toyota Corolla has improved almost as dramatically as the exterior styling of the car. There are plenty of soft touch materials and a number of technology features including the digital instrument panel and central touchscreen for the infotainment. However, technology buffs may be disappointed with the lack of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

The Corolla Hatchback will seat five with reasonable accommodation for the compact class. The Hatchback sits on a slightly shorter wheelbase to the Saloon and Touring Sports, so if rear space is a priority, buyers will appreciate the more spacious feeling in the back of those models. The boot is about average for the segment at 361 litres.

The interior of the 2019 Toyota Corolla Hatchback
The interior of the 2019 Toyota Corolla Hatchback

On the road in the 2019 Toyota Corolla Hatchback

Toyota has made much of the newly adopted Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA) GA-C platform and rightly so. Key concerns for engineers were to make this Corolla safer and more engaging to drive than anything that has come before. The GA-C platform guarantees a more rewarding driving experience thanks to a centre of gravity that is lowered by 10 mm, a multi-link rear suspension fitted as standard across the model range, and a 60% more rigid body shell through the use of high strength steel as reinforcement in key areas. According to Toyota, these contribute to better handling and stability without compromising ride and comfort, as well as reducing high frequency vibration for an increased feeling of quality.

This new generation of the Corolla uses a revised 1.8-litre hybrid powertrain putting out 122hp. However, the hatchback is also available with a more high performance 2.0-litre hybrid powertrain with 178hp. It retails from €32,915.

I was immediately impressed by the smoothness and refinement of the new Toyota Corolla 1.8-litre Hybrid on the road. The hybrid powertrain means that the car uses a CVT automatic gearbox, but Toyota has considerably improved the refinement of the transmission and also invested in better cabin insulation.

Rear legroom in the new Corolla Hatchback
Rear legroom in the new Corolla Hatchback

How efficient is it?

The Hatchback feels agile and dynamic on the road with fluid and direct steering responses and good body control through corners. Over a week of driving the hybrid delivered fuel consumption of 4.5/100km, while low emissions mean that motor tax is €180 per year. Around town the hybrid frequently dips into EV mode, which makes this hybrid a very efficient solution for drivers who do short commutes and plenty of town and city driving. On the motorway at high speeds, the Corolla will become less efficient but again it has been markedly improved in these circumstances, as seen in my overall average fuel consumption that was rated with about 300 km of motorway driving.

The Toyota Corolla has been one of the most anticipated new cars of 2019. It’s now a stylish and desirable hatchback on par with rivals in terms of interior finish, technology and its ability to engage the driver. Rear legroom is a little tighter compared to the Saloon and Touring Sports, but the Corolla is dubbed as the sporty one and the shorter wheelbase does make it feel more dynamic on the road. Toyota has also improved the hybrid powertrain and from my time driving the car, there are certainly savings to be made in terms of efficiency, particularly for urban drivers. There is a lot riding on this new generation of one of Ireland’s best loved cars, but the new Corolla Hatchback has been transformed.

The Toyota Corolla Hatchback Hybrid is a stylish and efficient compact car
The Toyota Corolla Hatchback Hybrid is a stylish and efficient compact car

Caroline Kidd

Model tested: Toyota Corolla Hatchback Luna Sport
Price:
€29,610 (from €24,380)
Engine: 1.8-litre petrol electric hybrid
Power: 
122 hp
Torque: 142 Nm
0-100km/h: 
10.9 seconds
Top speed: 180 km/h
Claimed fuel economy:
3.3 l/100km
CO2 emissions: 
83g/km
Motor tax: 
€180 per year


The new Toyota Corolla Hatchback and Touring Sports

Toyota Hybrid 2019 Range Preview In Dublin

The new Toyota Corolla Hatchback and Touring Sports
The new Toyota Corolla Hatchback and Touring Sports

Toyota Ireland held a preview in Dublin this week of their new 2019 range of self-charging hybrids with the new Camry Hybrid, RAV4 Hybrid and Corolla Hybrid family of hatchback, saloon and touring sports (estate) all on display. It was an opportunity to examine these highly anticipated models before their official Irish arrival over the course of the first four months of 2019.

Toyota is consistently one of Ireland's bestselling brands and in recent years they have put hybrid front and centre of their brand. And there is big ambition for this new product onslaught arriving in 2019 (or 'hybrid invasion' as the brand likes to put it). At the preview, we learned that in 2015 just 6% of Toyota's sales in Ireland were hybrid; in 2018 that figure was 54%; and in 2019 they expect this figure to look more like 80%.

It might sound ambitious but judging by the room of new cars I examined yesterday, there's plenty to like about this new generation of Toyota hybrids. I will go into more detail below on each of the models. But briefly they all sit on a new TNGA architecture, which is lighter and more rigid with a lower centre of gravity for improved comfort and driving dynamics. Material quality has improved on all models making them even more competitive among their European peers. And new hybrid powertrains promise lower emissions and improved fuel consumption in a world that's starting to look beyond diesel and petrol for default power. And on that note, Toyota is ending diesel production. So into this brave new world steps new Camry, Corolla and RAV4...

The new Toyota Corolla Hatchback in Dublin this week
The new Toyota Corolla Hatchback in Dublin this week

Toyota Camry

Back in Ireland after a 14 year hiatus, the new Camry will arrive in April. It will be Toyota's new challenger in the D/E saloon segment. The new Camry uses a 2.5-litre hybrid powertrain with 218hp. In Ireland it will be sold in two trim lines: Sol (from €40,750) and Platinum (from €42,950). Equipment on Sol includes full leather upholstery, 17" alloy wheels, 7" Toyota Touch, power seat adjustment, sat nav, smart entry, parking sensors, rear view camera, LED rear lights and power retractable door mirrors. The Platinum grade will add 18" alloy wheels, LED front fog lights, blind spot monitor, rear cross traffic alert and electrochromatic mirror.

The new Toyota Camry arriving in Ireland in April
The new Toyota Camry arriving in Ireland in April

Toyota Corolla

The Auris is no more and derivatives will be renamed Corolla. The new Toyota Corolla will come to Ireland as a Hatchback (January), Touring Sports and Saloon (February). It will be available as a 1.8-litre (122hp) or 2.0-litre (180hp) hybrid with fuel consumption claimed from 3.4l/100km and emissions from just 77g CO2. There will also be a 1.2-litre petrol offering with 116hp.

The Corolla Hatchback Hybrid will be available in three grades: Luna (from €26,995), Luna Sport (from €28,995) and Sol (from €30,115). Standard equipment will include 16" alloys, Toyota Safety Sense including adaptive cruise control and lane trace assist, LED headlights/fog lights and 8" Toyota Touch.

The new Corolla Touring Sports Hybrid will be available in two grades: Luna (from €26,995) and Sol (from €30,115). Standard equipment includes 16" alloy wheels, Toyota Safety Sense with adaptive cruise control and lane trace assist, LED headlights/fog lights, 8" Toyota Touch, and rear camera.

The Corolla Saloon is available for the first time as a self-charging hybrid and will feature a 1.8-litre hybrid powertrain with automatic transmission as standard. A 1.6-litre petrol engine is also available. The new Corolla Saloon will be available in three grades: Luna (from €27,700), Luna Sport (from €29,995) and Sol (from €31,705). Standard equipment includes climate control, 16" alloy wheels, Toyota Safety Sense with adaptive cruise control and lane trace assist, LED front fog lights, 8" Toyota Touch, and rear camera.

The new Toyota Corolla Saloon
The new Toyota Corolla Saloon in Dublin

Toyota RAV4

From January, the new Toyota RAV4 will be sold in Ireland exclusively as a 2.5-litre petrol electric hybrid with more power (218hp) and improved efficiency (4.5l/100km NEDC correlated value and 102g/CO2). Compared to the outgoing model, the new RAV4 has a longer wheelbase and more spacious interior. Luggage capacity is up 41 litres to 542 litres and there is a power tailgate as standard on the range. In Ireland, the new Toyota RAV4 will be available in three grades: Luna (from €37,590), Sol (from €39,590) and Sport (from €40,990). Standard equipment on Luna includes 17" alloy wheels, Toyota Safety Sense including adaptive cruise control and lane trace assist, LED lights front and rear, 8" Toyota Touch, parking sensors and rear parking camera. The Sol grade adds 18" alloy wheels, sat nav, leather-tex upholstery, heated front seats and rear privacy glass. The Sport grade adds 18" black alloys, bi tone paint scheme, projector LED headlamps, leather-tex sport upholstery and driver power seat.

The new Toyota RAV4 Hybrid
The new Toyota RAV4 Hybrid

I look forward to bringing you full road test reviews of these new models in 2019!


The 2019 Corolla Hatchback

New 2019 Toyota Corolla Revealed For Ireland

The 2019 Corolla Hatchback
The new Toyota Corolla Hatchback, arriving in Ireland in 2019

Toyota Ireland has announced that a new Corolla Hybrid will arrive in Ireland in February 2019.

It comes as Toyota reveals plans that will see the Toyota Corolla take new prominence in Toyota's range of compact cars. The Toyota Auris name plate is to be phased out - Toyota's C-segment offering will now consist of a hatchback, saloon and estate badged as the Toyota Corolla.

The Corolla Hatchback (pictured) will be available from January 2019. There are no images yet of the Corolla Saloon but it will be here in February.

This is a clear strategy to use the power of big global brand names. Corolla is the world’s best-selling model nameplate, with more than 45 million vehicles sold since its introduction in 1966.

The move coincides with the Corolla’s adoption of the Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA) and latest Toyota hybrid technology. The Corolla Hybrid will use a 1.8-litre hybrid powertrain, while there will also be a 1.6-litre petrol available.

Toyota Ireland will release pricing and specifications for the 2019 Toyota Corolla range in October.

Steve Tormey, Chief Executive of Toyota Ireland, said,“2019 is an incredibly exciting year as we see the arrival of the first ever Corolla Hybrid in Ireland. The Corolla, the world’s best-selling car, has long been Ireland’s favourite, and our customers have been eagerly awaiting the hybrid variant. We’re also delighted to announce the extension of the Corolla family, which represents the clear strategy to use the power of big global brand names to complement Toyota’s New Global Architecture (TNGA)".