2017 Toyota Corolla - Review

2017 Toyota Corolla Exterior Blue

Jack of all trades but a master of none. The new 2017 Corolla ranks high on durability and offers many features for its modest price tag, but excitement was not included on that list. For such a landmark year for Toyota, I expected much less vanilla from the 2017 Toyota Corolla. This car is good for point A to B automobile, and it only does moderately well in meeting all the needs of the average car consumer. Toyota has positioned this vehicle to try to meet all the requirements the average commuter needs, but to keep the more economical price point, it is unable to surpass the competition in its class in almost every category.

Visually the only real big changes in this year’s model were in the front grille and bumper. Toyota also claims to offer more distinction in the wheel covers and rims now to attempt to help distinguish between trim lines. Feature-wise, however, there are plenty of behind the scenes technologies that helped heighten the driving experience, and many are included for free. Things that are included in the 6.1” touchscreen, automatic lights, keyless entry, push-button start, and even a backup camera (except the CE). 

Where the Corolla falls short is with its standard 132-hp, 1.8L, 4-cylinder, and the Continuously Variable Transmission with Intelligent Shift (CVTi-S). Compare that to Honda’s 2.0-litre i-VTEC® engine, or even Mazda’s SKYACTIV-G, and Toyota’s measly 132hp sure seems disappointing. The Corolla doesn’t even beat these competitors in fuel efficiency with Honda being the clear winner, and only a minor difference in Toyota compared to the more powerful Mazda engine.

A major selling point for the 2017 Toyota Corolla is the implementation of Toyota’s TSS or Total Safety System. This is included as a standard feature on all Corolla’s, which certainly puts them ahead of the competition in this feature category. This system features: “a pre-collision avoidance system that warns the driver of potential dangers. It also includes things like automatic high beams, a lane departure alert system as well as dynamic radar cruise control.” This safety feature is so effective it could often border on annoying, especially in situations like making room for people on bikes on the backroads.

The most surprising thing to happen to this lineup is the introduction of the Scion iM. After Toyota folded the offshoot Scion brand, the only things that survived the cut were the iM and the FRS. While slightly faster than the sedan model, it doesn’t improve much in fuel efficiency. It will be very unlikely to see this model continue long as Toyota already has a full stable of hatchbacks with the Yaris and Prius.

In conclusion, the Toyota Corolla could be a very logical safe choice, for someone looking to go from point A to B. This car was seemed to be okay with being okay, there was no wow factor, no excelling feature to drive the need to buy. In the end, however, I guess Toyota will have the last laugh, as they satisfy the biggest niche of them all. The part of the market that is satisfied with good enough, you get most of the features offered in any higher priced vehicle, but yet it will still be safe and economical for your daily commute.

Key Features

  •  Pricing starting from $16,390 to $21,490
  • 4/6.5 L/100km (City/Hwy)
  • 132-hp, 1.8L
  • Toyota Star Safety System
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