Silverstone Fleet Management

TOYOTA COROLLA HATCHBACK

1.8 VVT-i Hybrid Icon 5dr CVT

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Google rating: 5 | 284 reviews

Review

Toyota's Corolla now has a primary focus on 1.8-litre hybrid power. Jonathan Crouch drives it.

Background

The Corolla lineage is certainly impressive. It's still the world's most successful automotive model nameplate, dating back to 1966, since when 46 million cars have been produced. Away from naming semantics, there's much of interest here, not least the fact that the primary engines offered are petrol/electric hybrids. There are two of them from the brand this time round, a 1.8 and a 2.0-litre unit, both of the 'self-charging' non-plug-in variety. This Corolla also aims to change customer perceptions of Toyota in this sector, which tend to centre around expectations of drab interior quality, forgettable looks and boring drive dynamics. This car, we're promised, is a huge step forward from its Auris predecessor in all these areas. But will all that be enough to at last make this Japanese maker competitive at the sharp end of this class amongst Focuses and Golfs? There are three body styles on offer, a saloon variant joining the five-door hatch we tested and the alternative 'Touring Sports' estate. All are built on the 'TNGA' 'Toyota New Global Architecture' platform and the hatch and estate are constructed at the brand's British factory in Burnaston, Derbyshire.

Driving Experience

The 1.8-litre hybrid unit we tried works with a 53kW 600V electric motor to generate a combined system output of 122hp. That recipe might sound pretty similar to that of the old Auris hybrid, but the powerplant on offer here is now a much cleverer unit. There's an increased valve angle for a better fuel and air mix, plus it can switch at will between intake and direct injection to prioritise either performance or economy. Toyota says it's worked hard to better mate this package with the belt-driven CVT auto gearbox that all its hybrids have to have, pointing to the way that greater torque from the electric motor should now provide a more linear increase in revs under acceleration. And sure enough, if you've owned one of the brand's petrol/electric models before, you'll notice that this one is more driveable. But the whole point here is to garner conquest sales from customers previously used to a small diesel. These folk will still have to adapt to the way that big throttle inputs cause a flare of revs that the set-up initially struggles to translate into rapid forward movement. And they'll also still need to accept a vast reduction in mid-range pulling power; this engine's very modest 142Nm torque output is about 40% down on what you'd get from a typical 1.5 or 1.6-litre rival small diesel unit, something you'll really notice in give-and-take motoring; overtakes have to be planned much further in advance. Push on and you should find this Toyota far more dynamically able than its segment predecessors this time round. Throw the car into a corner and you'll find that though this Corolla is no Focus, it far from disgraces itself, with a decent level of front end grip and steering that's predictable and accurate, though rather light.

Design and Build

The Corolla nameplate may have been globally successful over half a century but it's never been applied to a really good looking family hatch - until now. As an alternative to this hatch body style, there are two further models, a 'Touring Sports' estate and a Saloon, both of which sit on version of the new GA-C platform lengthened by 60mm. All are sleeker, sharper looking and altogether more appealing than anything Toyota has previously offered in this segment. At the wheel, there are also big improvements. Material quality is impressive, with copious use of piano black and metallic-style surfacing. It's not all about the tinsel either. The cabin's ergonomically sound too, thanks to a reduction in instrument panel height that enhances your forward view and a wider centre console area that gives the cockpit more of a wraparound feel. Plus you also get comfortable seats, good forward visibility and reasonable amounts cabin storage. Further helping with the overall feeling of greater sophistication is the view you get through the much smarter three-spoke leather-stitched wheel - that of a new instrument binnacle that Toyota has chosen to present with a combination of digital and analogue design. Anything it can't tell you will probably be covered off by an 8-inch 'Toyota Touch 2' centre-dash screen that deals with the usual DAB audio, Bluetooth, navigation and online connectivity options. Though it isn't cutting-edge in terms of graphical sophistication, we appreciate the fact that it incorporates a standard rear view camera. There's reasonable rear seat space. And out back, the hatch offers a 381-litre boot.

Market and Model

Corolla hybrid pricing starts from around £24,000 - which gets you the hatch version we tried; Saloon and Touring Sports estate body styles are also available. The 1.8-litre Hybrid engine is the only unit in the range to be available with all trim levels - 'Icon', 'Icon Tech', 'Design' and top 'Excel'). As an alternative to the 122hp 1.8-litre unit, Toyota also offers a 180ho 2.0-litre hybrid unit, but it's only available with pricier trim levels and consequently, is priced from around £27,500. Equipment levels are pretty generous, with all models getting LED headlights, heated front seats and a reversing camera. And base 'Icon' trim also includes 16-inch alloy wheels, LED tail lamps, front fog lamps, a shark fin antenna, an alarm and dusk-sensing and manual levelling features for the headlamps. On the inside, there's dual-zone air conditioning and leather trim for the steering wheel and gear knob, plus the front seats feature powered lumbar support. Infotainment's taken care of by an eight-inch 'Toyota Touch 2' multimedia centre-dash display that lets you Bluetooth-in your smartphone and provides access to a six speaker DAB stereo system. There's also a 'Drive Mode Select' driving modes system and an 'eCall emergency assistance set-up, part of an extensive rosta of standard safety kit.

Cost of Ownership

We've got to the point where a 'self-charging' (ie. a 'non-plug-in') hybrid model costs hardly any more to buy than an equivalent small diesel. But have we also got to the point where such an engine can match or beat its diesel counterpart in terms of real-world fuel economy? Let's see. The version of this Corolla that most customers will buy - the 1.8-litre Hybrid on test here - manages between 55.4 and 65.9mpg on combined cycle WLTP tests. That's quite a span, reflecting our experience that official fuel results in a hybrid are much harder to achieve than they are in a diesel. To give you some perspective, for a comparable Volkswagen Golf 1.6 TDI DSG auto, the combined cycle span is 51.4 to 54.3mpg. And for a Ford Focus 1.5 EcoBlue 120PS auto, it's 49.6 to 54.3mpg. But even if a comparable small diesel family hatch does end up being slightly more economical than an electrified 1.8-litre Corolla, it won't be able to get anywhere near this Toyota's CO2 emissions showing. That's rated at up to 76g/km for a 1.8-litre Hybrid Hatch model on 16-inch wheels. For that Golf model we mentioned, the best official figure is 104g/km, while for the Focus, it's 109g/km. And all that'll add up when it comes to your Benefit-in-Kind tax status.

Summary

So what do we have here? A name from the past which packages up technology from the future. Very soon, all family hatchback-class models will feature model line-ups that are primarily electrified. But Toyota has brought us that right now. In a car its volume brand competitors will have to take very seriously indeed. If you're going the hybrid route with a car in this sector, it makes sense to buy into the brand that has most experience in producing this kind of powertrain - and that's unquestionably Toyota. Which leaves us saluting Toyota's strongest ever proposition in the family hatchback segment. Because the market for hybrid models still isn't fully formed, the Corolla won't threaten the class leaders in terms of overall sales. But it's probably the cleverest choice you could make in the sector. And a massive step forward from its uninspired Auris predecessor. If you're looking for a car in this class, this one probably isn't currently on your shopping list. We think it ought to be.

Key Information

Transmission Type
Transmission TypeAutomatic
Fuel Type
Fuel TypeHybrid
Fuel Efficiency
Fuel Efficiency85.60mpg
Emissions
Emissions102.00g/km
Top Speed
Top Speed112mph

Full Details

Standard Equipment

Driver Convenience

  • Bluetooth telephone connectivity
  • E-call
  • Electrically assisted power steering
  • Push button start
  • Reversing camera
  • Smartphone integration with Apple CarPlay and Android auto
  • Speed limiter

Entertainment

  • 2 ring combimeters with 4.2" colour TFT screen
  • 6 speakers
  • 8" multimedia and back monitor
  • AM/FM radio
  • DAB Digital radio
  • USB and Aux in connectors + 12V front outlet

Exterior Features

  • Anti-jam protection on power windows
  • Auto up and down function on all power windows
  • Automatic headlights
  • Body coloured bumpers
  • LED daytime running lights
  • LED Headlights
  • Power adjustable heated door mirrors
  • Power front windows
  • Power rear windows
  • Rear window wiper
  • Shark fin antenna

Interior Features

  • 3 rear headrests
  • 3 spoke leather steering wheel + gear knob
  • Clean air filter
  • Dual zone automatic air conditioning with ECO mode switch
  • Fabric upholstery
  • Front head restraints
  • Heated seats
  • ISOFIX seat fixing (2 fixings on rear outer seats)
  • Pollen filter
  • Power lumbar support
  • Seatbelt pretensioners and force limiters
  • Steering wheel switches
  • Tilt/telescopic steering column
  • WIL - Whiplash Injury Lessening seats

Packs

  • Toyota safety sense 2 pack - Corolla

Safety

  • 3x3 point rear seatbelts
  • Adjustable front driver seat belt extender
  • Anti lock braking system + Electronic brake force distribution
  • Brake assist function
  • Electronic parking brake
  • Front passenger airbag on/off switch
  • Front seatbelt reminder
  • HAC-Hill-start Assist Control
  • Rear seat belt reminder
  • Supplemental restraint system (SRS) 7 airbags - dual driver, dual side curtain, side impact and driver knee airbags
  • Traction control
  • Tyre pressure warning system

Security

  • Alarm/immobiliser
  • Remote central locking + deadlocks

Technical

  • Vehicle Stability Control (VSC)

Technical Data

Emissions - ICE

  • CO
    0.105
  • CO2 (g/km)
    76
  • HC
    0.012
  • HC+NOx
    Not Available
  • Noise Level dB(A)
    67
  • NOx
    0.003
  • Particles
    Not Available
  • Standard Euro Emissions
    EURO 6
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Comb
    102
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Comb - Max
    115
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Comb - Min
    102
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Extra High
    129
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Extra High - Max
    145
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Extra High - Min
    129
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - High
    90
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - High - Max
    102
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - High - Min
    90
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Low
    89
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Low - Max
    99
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Low - Min
    89
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Medium
    80
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Medium - Max
    91
  • WLTP - CO2 (g/km) - Medium - Min
    80

Engine and Drive Train

  • Camshaft
    DOHC
  • Catalytic Convertor
    Yes
  • CC
    1798
  • Compression Ratio
    13.0:1
  • Cylinder Layout
    IN-LINE
  • Cylinders
    4
  • Cylinders - Bore (mm)
    80.5
  • Cylinders - Stroke (mm)
    88.3
  • Engine Code
    2ZR-FXE
  • Engine Layout
    FRONT TRANSVERSE
  • Fuel Delivery
    MULTI POINT FUEL INJECTION
  • Gears
    1 SPEED
  • Number of Valves
    16
  • Transmission
    AUTO

Fuel Consumption - ICE

  • EC Combined (mpg)
    85.6
  • EC Directive 1999/100/EC Applies
    No
  • EC Extra Urban (mpg)
    78.5
  • EC Urban (mpg)
    88.3
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Comb
    4.5
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Comb - Max
    5.1
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Comb - Min
    4.5
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Extra High
    5.7
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Extra High - Max
    6.3
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Extra High - Min
    5.7
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - High
    4
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - High - Max
    4.5
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - High - Min
    4
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Low
    3.9
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Low - Max
    4.5
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Low - Min
    3.9
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Medium
    3.6
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Medium - Max
    4.3
  • WLTP - FC (l/100km) - Medium - Min
    3.6
  • WLTP - MPG - Comb
    62.8
  • WLTP - MPG - Comb - Max
    55.4
  • WLTP - MPG - Comb - Min
    62.8
  • WLTP - MPG - Extra High
    49.6
  • WLTP - MPG - Extra High - Max
    44.8
  • WLTP - MPG - Extra High - Min
    49.6
  • WLTP - MPG - High
    70.6
  • WLTP - MPG - High - Max
    62.3
  • WLTP - MPG - High - Min
    70.6
  • WLTP - MPG - Low
    72.4
  • WLTP - MPG - Low - Max
    62.8
  • WLTP - MPG - Low - Min
    72.4
  • WLTP - MPG - Medium
    78.5
  • WLTP - MPG - Medium - Max
    65.7
  • WLTP - MPG - Medium - Min
    78.5

General

  • Alternative Fuel Qualifying
    Yes
  • Badge Engine CC
    1.8
  • Badge Power
    122
  • Based On ID
    Not Available
  • Coin Description
    VVT-i Hybrid
  • Coin Series
    Icon
  • Generation Mark
    11
  • Insurance Group 1 - 50 Effective January 07
    15E
  • NCAP Adult Occupant Protection %
    95
  • NCAP Child Occupant Protection %
    84
  • NCAP Overall Rating - Effective February 09
    5
  • NCAP Pedestrian Protection %
    86
  • NCAP Safety Assist %
    77
  • Did at least one aspect of this vehicle's safety give cause for concern?
    No
  • Special Edition
    No
  • Special Order
    No
  • Standard manufacturers warranty - Mileage
    100000
  • Standard manufacturers warranty - Years
    5
  • Vehicle Homologation Class
    M1

Performance

  • 0 to 62 mph (secs)
    10.9
  • Engine Power - BHP
    122
  • Engine Power - KW
    90
  • Engine Power - RPM
    5200
  • Engine Torque - LBS.FT
    105
  • Engine Torque - MKG
    14.5
  • Engine Torque - NM
    142
  • Engine Torque - RPM
    3600
  • Top Speed
    112

Test Cycles

  • Emissions Test Cycle
    WLTP
  • RDE Certification Level
    RDE 2

Tyres

  • Alloys?
    Yes
  • Space Saver?
    No
  • Tyre Size Front
    205/55 R16
  • Tyre Size Rear
    205/55 R16
  • Tyre Size Spare
    TYRE REPAIR KIT
  • Wheel Style
    Not Available
  • Wheel Type
    16" ALLOY

Vehicle Dimensions

  • Height
    1435
  • Height (including roof rails)
    Not Available
  • Length
    4370
  • Wheelbase
    2640
  • Width
    1790
  • Width (including mirrors)
    Not Available

Weight and Capacities

  • Fuel Tank Capacity (Litres)
    43
  • Gross Vehicle Weight
    1820
  • Luggage Capacity (Seats Down)
    1052
  • Luggage Capacity (Seats Up)
    313
  • Max. Loading Weight
    525
  • Max. Roof Load
    75
  • Max. Towing Weight - Braked
    750
  • Max. Towing Weight - Unbraked
    450
  • Minimum Kerbweight
    1295
  • No. of Seats
    5
  • Turning Circle - Kerb to Kerb
    11
  • FREE Delivery
  • Hassle-free Process
  • Expert Advice
  • Competitive Prices
  • Full Warranties
  • Price Match Promise

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Customer Reviews

   
Lewis Higginson

Lewis Higginson

"First time using Silverstone Fleet Management & would recommend them to everyone. Tom & Michelle were excellent. Both were incredibly helpful and efficient, always responding to emails and phone calls and so friendly and easy to talk to. Always keeping me up to date & nothing was too much of an ask. Couldn't be happier with my car & look forward to using Silverstone Fleet Management in the future."

"4 weeks ago"

Karen Elizabeth James

Karen Elizabeth James

"I have recently taken delivery of a company vehicle via Silverstone. I was introduced to them by my accountant who said they were very competitive. A major factor for me was that Volkswagen wanted a £3k deposit during the 4 month build period. That is a lot of money sitting in someone else's bank. The deal I got and the service I received from start to finish was excellent. The staff are very friendly and professional. There was not one step of the process where I was not kept informed. I will definitely be using them again and highly recommend them. UPDATE June 22 - I have just taken delivery of another vehicle via Aby at Silverstone FM. The service was excellent yet again. No messing around at multiple dealerships, the admin process was easy and straight forward. Highly recommended yet again."

"a month ago"

Cornel Tonciu

Cornel Tonciu

"From start to finish the service has been fantastic, nothing was too much effort, the car arrived on time and the whole process was simple and effective. Would definitely use again."

"2 months ago"

Freddie Sackey-Addo

Freddie Sackey-Addo

"Amazing colleagues always on hand to help. Abi has been first class in helping me with my previous purchase and my recent enquiries. She was warm, welcoming and super supportive. A brilliant asset to the team at Silverstone Fleet Management. 👍🏽👏🏽"

"4 months ago"

Steven Thompson

Steven Thompson

"Ryan was great from start to finish! Very patient in an ever evolving situation but we got there in the end! Thanks again"

"4 months ago"

Google reviews
Google rating: 5 | 284 reviews