09 June 2013

11th Generation Toyota Corolla Launched

The details- Styling, Powertrain and Differences Between American and European (Asian) Corolla

The legendary Toyota's small sedan, The Corolla has been released in its eleventh iteration. Almost simultaneously revealed for both American and European version, the new Corolla has finally stretched its wheelbase and grown quite tremendously length-wise. Similar in trend with the latest Toyota Camry, Toyota has given an entirely different front and rear end design between America and the rest of the world to reflect the market positioning and customer taste variation.

Before we get to the details of the styling, in any of the version, the new Corolla is an all-new from the ground up. This means that finally its has got a new platform, with a well stretched wheelbase that is no longer strikingly close to its smaller and cheaper Vios which sticks to 2,550mm wheelbase in its latest incarnation.

Taking the measuring tape, the new Corolla is 4,650mm long, 1,776mm wide, 1,455mm tall and rides on 2,700mm wheelbase. Thus it is 100mm longer in length and wheelbase, 16mm wider and 10mm lower than the previous car. For the drivetrain package, American model  continues to be powered by the 1.8L mill exclusively, but differs in their valvetrain system. One soldiers on with the trusted VVT-i mill with its 132hp and 171Nm of power and torque as it has been powering the last two Corolla, while the other one is Valvematic-equipped, offering 140hp and 174Nm, but cuts in with a better fuel efficiency thanks to the more adaptive valvetrain. In America, this modern lump is offered only on the Le Eco trim grade whereas the rest of American trim namely L, LE and S are offered with the former. For the gearbox - LE, S and LE Eco gets the 7 virtual ratios CVTi-S, and if you are 3-pedal kind of person, the 6 speed manual is available too for the LE and S. The lowest L-line, gets the aforementioned 6 speed manual too, but can also be equipped with the conventional automatic gearbox with a grand total of four (!) forward ratios. 

There's no news yet on the European engine line-up but expect it to mirror those in Auris closely. This could mean 1.33L to 2.4L for the petrol and 1.4L - 2.2L for the diesel. Asian version also is expected to retain the current engine line-up of 1.6L, 1.8L and 2.0L, but the range could be trimmed down to two engine. If 1.6L is phased out, we could also see the phase-out of the archaic 4 speeder auto too from that car, leaving an all-CVT range which is fittingly more modern.
European Corolla Front End
Going to the styling part, American and the rest of the world gets a different front end. The European (and most probably Asian version too) gets a suitably upmarket styling with prominent headlamps that wraparound the fender and blend with the chromed grille bars. The front fascia is uncannily inspired by Toyota Auris, RAV4 and the new Toyota Vios. Consistent with the aforementioned siblings, the headlamps is edgy in its shape, and theme that is carried over to the bumper too. 

The American version (below) slots nicely into its econobox status with a very understated look and a dose of sport-injected styling cues. The headlamp is smaller and shapelier and they are LED powered. The mandatory amber section is the trade-mark of all the American-bound cars. The bumper is different too from the version above, and I personally think it kind of has a Scion-look to it. Overall, the American Corolla looks smaller, and well, to our Asian eyes, cheaper too.
American Corolla Front End
The sharing of platform (or course) and body panel is obvious from the side profile. There's no variation as far as the side panel and door panel is concern. The kind at the rear door is the only breakaway from what can be described as a fuss-free design. Despite the different in the rear end design, from the side the rear light housing is identical for both version. The European version front end is visibly a little higher than the American counterpart, thanks to the bigger headlamp setup.
European Corolla Side Profile

American Corolla Side Profile

European Corolla Rear End

The difference in the rear end end is not as comprehensive as the front end. The outer edge of the tail lamp is identical between the continent. The difference lies in the trunk lid panel, which has a different license plate housing section between the two, and the American version gets a smaller tail lamp inset. While the rear bumper is almost similar, the European version gets the reflector at the bottom end.
American Corolla Rear End
The cabin is almost identical, saved for some very minor detailing. The dashboard is identical, with similar steering wheel, door trim, gear console and meter binnacle. However, the climate control panel is slightly different, as is the audio panel. The American car gets the centre mounted clock in between the Toyota 86-inspired air duct. 

The cabin design is a huge departure from the current model. In Asian Corolla Altis, the emphasize is on luxury with a well-defined plastic texture and wood insert, all combined to give a soothing environment. The new one however, has totally ditched the luxury look of the 10th generation Corolla.
European Corolla IP

American Corolla IP
Overall design wise, the 11th generation Corolla is a modernized version of the older version, with the styling (particularly European version) is in-line with the new Toyota design theme, i.e more angular, bold grille and edgy lighting. The interior too benefits from the overused Toyota 86-styled aircond outlet and upright dashboard architecture.

There is not Asian introduction yet, but as before we expect it to mirror the European version here very closely. There are some potential issue like the lost of luxurious interior which could jeopardize the loyal and conservative Toyota owner.

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