We haven’t put 2018 to bed yet but it appears 2020 is right around the corner. Toyota took a few minutes last night to introduce us to the all-new, 12th generation Corolla that will make its North American public debut at the Los Angeles Auto Show in two weeks and be available for sale in the second quarter of 2019. Corolla is the best-selling car of all time with over 45,000,000 copies sold since it was introduced in 1966. And while many are trading in sedans for SUVs and crossovers, and other manufacturers are abandoning the segment, Toyota is doubling down with heavily reworked and hopefully improved entry-level sedan.
The new Corolla sedan uses a slightly stretched version of the TNGA architecture introduced on the Corolla hatchback we drove this spring creating a more family-friendly package. While slightly shorter in overall length than the 2109 Corolla it replaces, the 2020 Corolla has more front and rear legroom, headroom, and more trunk space.
There are two available engines – a 1.8L four that carries over from the current model. It has been massaged to deliver a few more horsepower and better fuel economy. That will be available in the more comfort oriented L, LE, and LXE models. An all-new 2.0L double overhead cam four banger appears under the hood of the SE and XSE sport models. It develops 169 horsepower at 6,600 RPM. There are two transmissions available, a CVT with a fixed first gear and a 6-speed manual transmission with automatic rev matching.
Interiors are all new, with standard cloth seats on the base trim. Toyota’s SofTex simulated leather is an option. The XSE features more aggressively bolstered sport seats with two tone trim. The interior is surprisingly roomy. Our 6’3” tall editor-in-chief had plenty of legroom in the back seat even sitting behind another six-foot tall journalist.
The 2020 Corolla will have Toyota Safety Sense 2.0 standard. That means you get adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, lane trace assist, pre collision system, auto high beams and road sign assist. Other technology includes an 8-inch touchscreen in all but the base L model, Apple CarPlay, Amazon Alexa integration, and a 6 speaker audio system. An optional JBL 800-watt audio system with nine speakers.
Pricing has not been announced but will be available closer to launch. We’ll have a test drive as soon as the new Corolla is available.