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The next-generation Toyota Corolla hatch has been spied undergoing hot weather testing in southern Europe.

As with the previous two generations, the new Corolla hatch will likely wear the Auris badge in all countries outside of Australia and the USA.

With a thick layer of tape covering an array of false body panels, it’s hard to make out the car’s styling details.

Up front, the new hatch seems to feature a thin, but wide, set of headlamps flanking a large Toyota emblem sitting above a large lower grille area.

The side window profile of the new hatch bears a closer resemblance to the first-generation Auris hatch than to the second-generation model currently on sale throughout the world.

At the rear, the tail-lights stretch into the tailgate, and also feature a chrome highlight strip.

Under the skin, the new Corolla should be based on the Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA), which made its debut underneath the latest Prius, and has since underpinned the new C-HR and next-generation Camry.

If the new Corolla follows pattern laid out by recent Toyota vehicles, it should have improved handling from a lower centre of gravity, as well as a lower body weight thanks to the use of high-strength steel and other weight saving measures.

Zooming into the grille area, it seems as though this prototype has an intercooler, meaning it has a turbocharged engine of some description.

We don’t know for sure when the new Corolla hatch will make its debut, but if the six year lifespan of the first-generation Auris is anything to go by, the new hatch could make its debut next year.

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