You will know it as the Toyota Auris, but Toyota has dropped the Auris name and instead replaced it with a far more successful nameplate, the Corolla. It is probably one of the most successful models in automotive history with millions sold since it first launched. Now in its 12 generation, we know the Corolla as a rather bland, but popular and practical, sedan. But let me introduce you to the Corolla Hatch!

Never would I have thought I would use the words striking when describing the looks of a Corolla, but that is exactly what this Hatch is. It’s all angles and smooth lines. It’s certainly the boldest looking Corolla I have ever seen.

When you step inside, things do become a bit more simplistic, but still modern. The quality materials used and the overall design of the cockpit makes for a very inviting cabin. The only downside is the space, especially the boot as you are only looking at 217-litres which is smaller than some of its competitors. But on the spec front, you are in good company, because both trim levels come standard with an array of features that rival these competitors.

The mid-grade Xs comes standard with LED lights with LED DRL, Dual-zone Climate Control, Smart Entry (keyless access), Cruise Control, Power-operated heated exterior mirrors, colour Multi-Information Display (MID), Reverse Camera, one-touch power windows and speed-sensitive door locking. The Xr model adds Sport front seats in a leather and Alcantara combination, power-adjustable driver lumbar support and seat-heating function for driver and passenger. Blind Spot Monitoring (BSM) completes the Xr package.

The Corolla Hatch features a host of active and passive safety features. Airbags are provided in Driver, Passenger, Side, Curtain and Driver Knee locations. Vehicle Stability Control is standard with the full suite of electronic aids present (ABS, EBD, Brake Assist and Hill-assist Control). ISOFIX anchorage points are also standard.

All three models are powered by a 1.2-litre turbocharged petrol engine. You will know it from the Toyota CH-R. It produces 85 KW of power and 185 Nm of torque and because the Hatch is quite light, it doesn’t have to work too hard to propel you forward. You can choose between a six-speed manual transmission or a CVT. Both have a claimed fuel consumption of 6.1l/100 km.

There is no doubt that the Toyota Corolla Hatch will sell well here in South African. Even though it is in a tough segment with leaders such as the Volkswagen Golf and Ford Focus. But with a Toyota badge slapped on it as well as having such a strong legacy behind the Corolla name, I think we will see this give all of the cars in this segment a good run for their money.

All Corolla Hatch models come standard with a six-services/90 000 km service plan and a three-year/100 000 km warranty.


• Corolla Hatch 1.2T Xs 6MT – R 336 800
• Corolla Hatch 1.2T Xs CVT – R 347 400
• Corolla Hatch 1.2T Xr CVT – R 367 100

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