Auto123 . Updates2022 Toyota Corolla Cross test drive.
The idea is so logical that one wonders why Toyota took so long to develop it: why not make a crossover version of the indestructible Corolla, now that sedans have given way so much to SUVs. In fact, the new Corolla Cross meets more than people expected from a car with the Corolla name on the tailgate. But is it doing enough to distract consumers from the many ultra-modern models that now populate the small SUV segment?
To be clear, the Corolla Cross is actually quite distinct from its sedan counterparts. Granted, the models share the same platform, but there are more differences here, for example, between the Impreza and the Subaru Crosstrek. For one thing, the exterior is completely unique. Meanwhile, those familiar with the Corolla’s interior will find its surroundings all too familiar when slipping into the Cross version.
But in reality, none of this matters. Surely Toyota’s idea with a model like this is to keep those who forgo the look and are now looking for a utility-format car in the Corolla fold. But for this to work, Toyota needs to invent a product that can compete with its competitors in this sector.
We cannot say that the new Corolla Cross is a disappointment, far from that – with one exception. We will return to it.
The crossover looks cute enough when you get close to it, even if it doesn’t make hearts beat faster. The proportions are positional and everything is tasteful, from the reasonably proportional grille, to the sleek headlights, to the gently sloping roofline that doesn’t reduce the rear seat space too much. All around the bottom are plastic elements meant to strengthen the look a bit. Essentially, this Corolla Cross plays the RAV4’s new little brother. Although it may not be full of personality, it is beautiful and very well designed.
The entry is clearly more horizontal than in a Corolla sedan or hatchback, since you have to land a little lower. Once inside, there is a very comfortable and spacious space with a simple dashboard, mattress and center console. As mentioned, those who know Toyota and more specifically its compact models will find their way there right away, and this is not a quality to be overlooked. Not all new car owners want to go through a learning curve.
As you’d expect, the interior offers more room and versatility than the Corolla, although the latter hatchback and Cross models share the same 2,640mm wheelbase. On our XLE all-wheel drive tester, cargo space with seat heights is 688 liters (compared to 722 with front-wheel drive configuration); That’s more than the Nissan Qashqai (648 liters) and much more than the Subaru Crosstrek (588 liters).
The Corolla Cross is powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine that develops 169 horsepower, mated to a continuously variable transmission (CVT); Our test model was equipped with an AWD system that drives all four wheels and can automatically transmit up to 50% of the power to the rear. This version also features an independent rear suspension instead of a semi-independent torsion beam system for front-wheel drive.
This powertrain does a good job in terms of fuel economy, with the AWD variant providing a combined rating of 7.8 l/100 km. Know that a hybrid version is in the works, which will further improve this impressive number; It should be ready later this year for 2023.
Where the rhythm hurts!
What this engine does less well is provide a spirited ride. The 2.0-liter engine doesn’t provide much power, but it should be enough for this volume car. It doesn’t, and this is due to the variable transmission sluggish handling of the horsepower. The acceleration is slow and noisy, to the point where you won’t find satisfaction unless you stay very poised with your right foot.
And this weakness, despite the agility of the model on the road, may make some people hesitate, because there are competitors in the segment that behave much more actively and undoubtedly offer more pleasure behind the wheel, for example, the Mazda CX-30, which is not the only one. That may not be enough to stand up to the great reputation for reliability and robust engineering that Toyota brings with it in this new segment, not to mention the allure of the Corolla name. But this is not the selling point of the Corolla Cross, that’s for sure.
Pricing for the 2022 Corolla Cross starts at $24,890 for the base L model, which incidentally comes equipped with the Toyota Safety Sense suite of safety systems. Next come the LE, LE Premium, and XLE versions. All-wheel drive is a $1,400 option in the first two and comes standard on the latter two.
The last word
The new Corolla Cross overall represents a very solid entry for Toyota in a category that really needs to break into. It’s a noteworthy addition that slips into the lineup just below the flagship RAV4, and doesn’t even bother comparing the latter, except that the smaller of the two doesn’t offer the same level of power under the hood as the larger. One. The many qualities of Toyota models and their engineering are fully on display here, but also the lack of excitement that sometimes characterizes the brand.
Pourtant, si Toyota parvient à corriger l’effet d’entonnoir de cette CVT, et peut-être à offrir une deuxième option de moteur pour ceux qui veulent un peu plus de punch, elle pourrait bien avoir un meneur de segment sur les bras dans Next years. Because the Corolla Cross has a solid design and offers great versatility, a spacious, comfortable and decent interior, perhaps excellent (especially with the arrival of the hybrid version) in fuel economy.
Passenger space and cargo space is rather generous
General practical application
Familiarity for Toyota drivers
Good grip and good handling
We love less
Four-wheel drive is not standard across the range
General lack of dynamism
No heating for the back seat
Pictures of Toyota Corolla Cross 2022
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