Welcome to the next generation of the Toyota Corolla and for this year’s model they’ve given the popular auto a complete makeover. Even if you’re a fan of the old Corolla’s there is a lot to like about this new mode. The big takeaway is that the 2014 Toyota Corolla has a more stylish interior, gets better gas mileage and out performs most of the other cars in its class. This makes the Corolla a perfect pick for someone looking to score a dependable sedan that won’t break the budget.
Slip Into Comfort
Once you slip into the cozy interior and you’ll marvel at the roomier seating. Case in point: the 5 inches of added legroom for your rear passengers. This extra space also makes getting child safety seats in and out less of a hassle.
The 2014 Toyota Corolla is classified as a “five-passenger compact sedan.” There are four trim levels you can pick from. You can opt for the L, the LE, the LE Eco and the S. Starting with the baseline L class will have you enjoying 15-inch steel wheels, power windows and mirrors, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, LED headlights, AC, Bluetooth hook up and iPod plug-in: All standard.
The Trim Packages
At the LE level, the wheels go up to 16 inches and you’ll also have keyless entry, power door locks, a touchscreen display for the music system and rearview mirror and automatic climate controls. With the LE Eco you’ll get all the perks from the LE package along with specific engine and transmission tuning. There are also low-rolling-resistance tires and a rear spoiler that provides even greater aerodynamics. The top of the line S class incorporates all the features of the previous trim packages along with a chrome grille frame, foglights and a rear spoiler. If you step up for the Plus or Premium trim packages you can enjoy a sunroof, keyless entry and ignition. You’ll also have built in satellite radio, HD radio and a navigation system.
Let’s talk performance. This version of the Toyota Corolla fires up a 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine. That generates 132 hp and 128 pound-feet of torque. However, it’s the fuel economy that everyone is concerned about and here the Corolla doesn’t disappoint either. The EPA estimate puts the Corolla at 31 mpg combined fuel economy. That breaks down to 28 mpg in the city and 37 mpg out on the open highway. That’s good news for anyone with a long commute.
With regard to safety, the Corolla delivers an impressive list of features including front side airbags, side curtain airbags and a drive knee airbag. There is also enhanced stability and traction control and antilock brakes.
The dashboard also benefits from all that hard redesign work. Your best bet is to go for the upgraded audio and navigation system. Here you can utilize an impressive touchscreen with large “virtual buttons” and easy-to-read graphics. A very important feature is the hands-free Smartphone connectivity. Included is a Bing search engine that can have you downloading instant updates for traffic, sports, weather and the stock market. For tunes, you can enjoy the wide array of music options from Pandora streaming radio. It’s the kind of interior you’ll have a hard time leaving. Toyota has always done a decent job with their seats and the Corolla is no exception. The front seats offer a comfy fit even for the tall driver. Back in the trunk you can make use of 13 cubic feet of space that can be expanded when the rear seats are popped down.
How Does It Handle?
As for handling, the Toyota Corolla can best be described as a smooth and quiet ride. The steering handles very well for its class. The newly designed suspension provides for a very smooth ride. You never feel like you’re straining when you accelerate to get onto the highway. In other words, there’s plenty of punch in that engine. When you add in the comfortable seating, the updated control panels and the friendly sticker price you’ll definitely want to give the Corolla a second look.