The recipe is not new. Talk to Subaru, which has been equipping its compact models with all-wheel drive for decades. But what Toyota presented last week technically rethinks the approach in the segment. From the 2023 model year, the Toyota Corolla and Corolla Cross will be able to receive all-wheel drive working in synergy with a hybrid powertrain. Should we really expect anything else from a pioneer in the field?
Thus, the buyer will be able to opt for this paraphernalia as an option with both the crossover body and the sedan. On the side of the Corolla Cross, the system consists of a 1.8 L four-cylinder Atkinson cycle supported at the front by an electric motor. A second electric motor drives the rear wheels with no mechanical connection to the front, which makes everything more easily adaptable to various platform configurations. It’s a combination already seen on board the RAV4 and Venza, to name a few. In the case of the Corolla Cross, total power is increased to 194 hp and Toyota promises an average fuel consumption of 6.4 L/100 km, which is still half a liter more than a more imposing RAV4 hybrid.
As for the Corolla sedan, the two-wheel-drive version remains and will be supported as an option by this new all-wheel-drive version. The engine architecture is similar to that of the Corolla Cross with a 1.8L four-cylinder as the base material and no mechanical link between the front and the rear. This makes it the only model to opt for this approach in the segment. Toyota, however, did not disclose the figures for the power and estimated fuel consumption.
In addition, the 169 hp 2.0L four-cylinder becomes the standard engine for the Corolla for 2023 and the model receives slight aesthetic changes. At the same time, it will carry the latest generation of Toyota’s infotainment system to renovate the whole thing a little more. On sale by the end of the year in price ranges not yet disclosed.
A special edition for the GR Corolla
While its price range is still pending, as is its official arrival date, the GR Corolla also presented itself last week in an even sportier outfit. The Morizo edition will culminate at the pinnacle of sporty compact liveries with a series of improvements. The first: the rear seats are dropped for weight. So it will be a Corolla hatchback… two-seater.
Welding points have been added for chassis rigidity and the torque of its small 1.6L three-cylinder increases to 295 lb-ft while the power remains the same (300 hp). All-wheel drive remains, as does the manual transmission, whose gear ratio has been revised. Barely 300 copies will be produced.