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Toyota Corolla Cross: The triumph of the reasonable

Obviously, Toyota did not foresee the success of medium-sized utilities. Japan’s No.1 has left Subaru, Hyundai, Chevrolet and Ford, to name a few, to cultivate an automotive genre whose growth is seriously beginning to overshadow the classically designed compact automobiles. Toyota therefore had to shake up some taboos.

With six years behind the Japanese and American competition, not to mention the South Korean brands, Toyota is therefore entering the world of urban utility vehicles.

PHOTO PROVIDED BY TOYOTA

Square front, no frills, slightly truncated rear, stocky profile, moderately sculpted curves: all this is homogeneous and exudes seriousness, without much charm, but not unpleasant to look at.

Despite a very discreet side logo whose presence does not improve the presentation of trade statistics1, this urban utility does not really belong to the Corolla family. At the Corolla Cross, therefore, to establish itself as a model in its own right.

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The newcomer takes over the TNGA-C platform, which offers a starting point suitable for reassuring consumers through its efficiency and reliability.

And if success knocks on its doors, it could do a lot of damage to sales of the Corolla hatchback and CH-R. Compared to these vehicles, the Cross offers increased versatility, the presence of a four-wheel drive (on certain versions) and the promise of a hybrid engine in the coming months. These three elements risk, within the Toyota range, to isolate the CH-R and the Corolla hatchback in the short to medium term.

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The Corolla Cross carefully avoids, in its interior presentation, to stand out from the rest of the Corolla range. Copy and paste.

At Toyota, we like to believe that these two models receive, with the addition of the Corolla Cross, rather reinforcement. And rather than speculating on potential collateral damage, Toyota prefers to focus on the Corolla Cross’s direct competitors in the booming segment of “urban” utility vehicles (see screen 4 on “The competition”).

A known recipe

Synthesis model in a way, this Corolla Cross has no reason to be ashamed of its historical origins, but also technical. It originated in the United States in a factory erected in collaboration with Mazda (see tab 4). Unsurprisingly in this era of sharing, the newcomer is taking over the TNGA-C platform, which offers a starting point capable of reassuring consumers with its efficiency and reliability.

The Toyota Corolla Cross at a glance

Available prices $ 24,890 to $ 33,990
Visible in dealerships: now
WE love

Good peripheral visibility
Proven technical solutions
Appreciable comfort

We like less

Noisy engine
Direction stingy with sensations
Hybrid variation absent at launch

Our verdict

The days of the current C-HR and Corolla hatchback are they counted?

Besides, the Cross drives like a Corolla, or almost. It turns sufficiently flat, brakes correctly, steers well, and its size makes it very easy to live in an urban environment.

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The vehicle originated in the United States at a factory erected in collaboration with Mazda.

On the road too, not much is different from driving a car, apart from, of course, the high occupant position.

The steering, correctly assisted, gains only in precision by opting for the treads with large sizes (18 in). The 17” tires provide a smoother feel. The balanced chassis makes it a predictable and restful vehicle to drive. A finding that applies to versions equipped with the four-wheel drive mode, the only ones offered in the context of this test. It should be noted that the towed versions use a separate rear suspension. Rather than independent, it uses a torsion beam.

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The trunk is generous, but the space in the rear seats, a little disappointing.

A hybrid engine will arrive next year (see the technical sheet), but for its launch, this Toyota entrusts the responsibility of driving it to the only two-liter four-cylinder engine. A sober, robust and reliable engine, which we will blame. his indolence and high noise level.

PHOTO PROVIDED BY TOYOTA

For its launch, this Toyota entrusts the responsibility of moving it to the only two-liter four-cylinder engine.

Like the other Corollas, the Cross is tied exclusively to a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) with a mechanical gear first ratio to combat the apathy exhibited by this transmission. This is distinguished by the presence of 10 simulated gears, and not 7 as is the case on the other Corollas and the C-HR. This greater number has no impact on fuel consumption and vehicle performance, says Toyota. This increased number of programmed gears is essentially aimed at “increasing driving pleasure”. So, it’s failed, it changes absolutely nothing.

Wise as a Corolla …

Very rational specifications gave birth to a very traditional vehicle, with a somewhat dull personality in appearance. Its proportions are of a proven classicism, and its more versatile line contrasts with the quirky style of the C-HR, for example. Square front, no frills, slightly truncated rear, stocky profile, moderately sculpted curves: all this is homogeneous and exudes seriousness, without much charm, but not unpleasant to look at.

PHOTO PROVIDED BY TOYOTA

Toyota Corolla Cross

The Corolla Cross deliberately courts all those who are fond of cars that are admittedly a little mundane, but who agree to stay in their place.

Not everyone wants to see their neighbor turn pale with jealousy at the sight of the new coach parked in front of the house. Why should we pretend to ignore this clientele who, moreover, prove to be much more loyal to a brand than buyers who are more sensitive to fashion phenomena?

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Strict but bland Toyota scheduling is a must. Its conservatism too.

It is with this bias of modesty that this small utility fits the Toyota mold. No surprise. The trunk is generous, the driving position pleasant, but the space in the rear seats, a little disappointing, and the presentation, stereotypical. In this regard, the Corolla Cross carefully avoids, in its interior presentation, to stand out from the rest of the Corolla range. Copy and paste. Therefore, strict but bland Toyota scheduling is required.

PHOTO PROVIDED BY TOYOTA

The Corolla Cross deliberately courts all those who are fond of cars that are admittedly a little mundane, but who agree to stay in their place.

Its conservatism too, as evidenced by the presence of a (too) classic zipper posted flush with the carpet to remotely open the valve of the supply neck (still wearing its cap). What also to say about the infotainment system inefficient which, unlike that of the new Tundra having been the subject of a recent test bench, does not benefit from the latest advances of its manufacturer in this field.

Devoid of roughness and perfectly consensual, the Corolla Cross has everything to be among the darlings of its segment. A vehicle that is a little (a lot) conformist, but which one would be hard pressed to say badly.

Corolla Cross sales will not be counted against Corolla sales domestically.

Wireless

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A hybrid version will join the Toyota Corolla Cross catalog over the next year.

It is no longer a secret for anyone that a hybrid version will enter the Corolla Cross catalog over the next year. For now, Toyota management does not reveal – even under the effect of torture – any information about it. However, everything suggests that the engine currently used by the Lexus UX could be found under the hood of this partially electrified Corolla Cross.

Memory

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Toyota Matrix

It is said that Toyota strategists debated at length whether it was not better to name the Corolla Cross after the Matrix. This model, resulting from a collaboration with General Motors (Pontiac Vibe), had many followers. The latter, believes the Japanese manufacturer, will find all the versatility of their favorite model with the Corolla Cross. This takes up more space in the street, but offers an even larger utility volume. As a reminder, the Matrix offered, depending on whether the bench was folded down or not, between 560 and 1398 L compared to 750 and 1891 L (towed version without sunroof) for the Corolla Cross.

Share your experience

Press will soon publish the test of the following vehicles: Ford Maverick, Infiniti QX60, Porsche Macan, Toyota 86 and Volkswagen Tiguan. If you own one of these vehicles or are expecting delivery, we would love to hear from you.

Technical sheet

Engine: L4 DOHC 2.0L naturally aspirated
Power: 169 horsepower at 6,600 rpm
Copuple: 151 lb-ft @ 4,400 to 4,800 rpm Weight: 1,405 kg (traction), 1,485 kg (all-wheel drive)
Ground clearance: 209 mm
Maximum towing capacity: 680 kg (1,500 lb) Transmission: continuously variable automatic (CVT)
Drive modes: front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive Tires: 215 / 65R17 (L, LE); 225 / 55R18 (XLE) Fuel tank capacity: 47 L (front wheel drive), 50 L (all wheel drive)
Recommended gasoline: regular
Fuel consumption: 7.6 L / 100 km (XLE AWD model tested) Wheelbase: 2,640 mm
Length: 4474 mm
Height: 1648 mm
Width: 1825 mm (excluding exterior mirrors)

 

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