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2012 Toyota Corolla Review
  • New generation Corolla has a face lift., Lots of modern features, Economical to purchase and maintain, Handles everyday driving usage
  • Functional but unspectacular engine, No electronic navigation standard

by Law K

It is one of Australian’s most popular cars. Most motor enthusiasts will label this vehicle as pedestrian. For practicality & price, it can’t be easily surpassed.

It fits up to five persons of median height comfortably and there’s space for suitcases at the back. It can travel at the speed limits effortlessly and it has a lot of the features expected in a modern car.

Compared to the previous generation of Corolla Ascent, the 2013 model looks like a different machine. Being a company that has recently released a sports model (86GT) and has a luxury car line (Lexus) seems to ensure that some of features of those cars eventually trickle into their mainstream line.

These features include an entertainment system with controls on the steering wheel. Included is bluetooth connection to your mobile phone, so you can use the in-cabin microphone and speakers to answer it. Rear-view cameras that used to the domain of luxury cars is now a standard option for this type of car. The driver’s side mirror can be folded for tight parking spots and starting the car moves it back to its unfolded position.

Driving it is comfortable and relaxed for daily driver for short trips (<20km). It has decent power for the occasional bursts of acceleration and uphill slopes. The power steering allowed for sharp turns and suspension works to smooth out the journey.

Even so, there are annoyances in this modern update. To start, it’s acceleration is the same as ever. There are improvements to the engine but it geared to economy and efficiency instead of power and its delivery. There is green ECO light on the dash board. An option to display fuel efficiency data while the car drives is a constant reminder of that philosophy. It still drives like the Corolla of old despite its face lift.

The brakes are twitchy to respond at low speed (<10km/h). Brakes have miliseconds of delay at that speed range which makes drivers press harder on the pedal. This results in a jerky, sudden stop when the brakes finally activate.

The interior are functional without being spectacular. Buttons on the steering are slightly raised and seem to get it in way of quick turns.

It’s a car that serves as a benchmark and a starting point for all cars. It’s definitely not a car for the track without some modifications. When used on public roads and following the speed limits posted, it is a perfectly functional vehicle. It could argued that every driver should drive this or a similar car for their first car to get use to cars generally. When drivers are familiar with the entry-level car, they can use this experience to appreciate other makes & models.

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2012 Toyota Corolla Review Review
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