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27 February 2019 · New Cars

The First Ever Toyota Corolla Hybrid

About the 2020 Toyota Corolla

The upcoming 2020 Toyota Corolla is the first ever hybrid of this line that has been in many people’s sights for some time now. The model is projected to achieve a minimum of 50 MPG combined fuel economy making it perhaps the most efficient model when it comes to fuel.

Its design isn’t the only aspect that people should know about the new Corolla Hybrid. Its highly efficient model makes use of the newest Toyota Hybrid Synergy Drive of the new Prius, which is another winner in MPG. The brand is the only provider of hybrids with unique design choices which caters to people who have varying tastes but want the same fuel efficiency Toyota is known for.

Driving a Corolla Hybrid

Some individuals may be surprised at the linear acceleration response coming from the Corolla Hybrid. As drivers pull away, its battery will give a slight boost in power so as to lower the strain on the engine and get rid of the ‘rubber band’ effect that is quite common in some hybrids.

The hybrid has an EV mode that allows the vehicle to operate as a purely electric car. This makes it an excellent choice for short distance driving but will depend on a few conditions such as the charge level of its battery. Drivers will find this mode to be quite useful in operating the vehicle in indoor parking spaces and parking areas.

Furthermore, its Vehicle Proximity Notification is going to alert pedestrians that the vehicle is nearby when it is on battery mode.

Together with the ECO and NORMAL driving modes, the Corolla Hybrid has a SPORT drive mode which lets users experience an increase in acceleration power when needed.

Toyota Size Efficiency

The manufacturers realized that the hybrid battery and powertrain is a good fit for the latest Corolla due to the Toyota New Global Architecture platform or TNGA. When it comes to the space in the cabin, there’s sufficient roominess here that isn’t compromised simply because it’s a Toyota hybrid model.

Its new system is a combination of a 1.8-litre four-cylinder gasoline engine that has two motors using an electronically controlled continuously variable transmission transaxle or CVT. It has a combined system output of 121 HP which is quite the responsive performance.

The hybrid’s battery pack makes use of the recently developed technology known as the Hyper-Prime Nickel which is able to boost its performance in a lighter and smaller package. Its flatter and more compact size make it fit under the rear seat instead of taking up space in the trunk. This also allows a 60/40 split folding seatback which expands its cargo capacity overall.

It also has a responsive engine as it works together with the electric motor (MG2) and energy efficiency can be expected with both electric motors being used.

Stopping Power

There’s also another improvement in efficiency which comes via the Electronically Controlled Brake or ECB system. This feature is able to coordinate the operation between the hydraulic braking system and the electric motors in order to give it the best stopping power. The dynamic use of the electric motors allows the braking system to be highly efficient which in turn leads to better fuel economy.

The feedback and pedal feel for drivers have been improved thanks to the active hydraulic booster on its standard braking system. If there should be any problems encountered in the ECB system, the conventional hydraulic brakes will be able to stop the vehicle fully.

Its Brake Hold feature, when activated, is a technology that’s quite convenient to use. The reason for this is because it lowers the driver’s effort while waiting, such as in the case of heavy traffic. Upon pushing the accelerator, the Brake Hold would instantly release itself.

Gas and Electric

The Hybrid Synergy Drive’s other half, which is the gas engine, is quite impressive as well. It has a 2ZR-FXE 1.8-litre inline four-cylinder engine that was intentionally made for use on hybrids. Its long-stroke setup makes use of the Atkinson cycle, which applies a high compression ratio together with a smaller intake stroke and a longer expansion compared to the Otto design. This new cycle is able to take more power from the fuel supplied to it while the electric motors compensate its low-end power.

The friction caused by the piston skirts, oil pump and rotating parts are all reduced. There is also an electric water pump which gets rid of parasitic loss through a standard belt-driven pump.

When using the Corolla Hybrid, its exhaust heat recirculation system quickens the warm-up of the engine’s coolant which allows the Toyota hybrid to put a stop on the gas engine and when driving if it’s not required. This is especially important for low-power driving conditions in the city.

Toyota Safety

All of the 2020 Corolla Hybrid models will have the Toyota Safety Sense 2.0 equipped as a standard together with several advanced safety features. These include:

PCS or Pre-Collision System

Which is made to automatically turn on the brakes to mitigate impact or avoid collision totally.

Full-Speed DRCC or Dynamic Radar Cruise Control

This feature is made for use on highways and is designed so that it can maintain a preset vehicle-to-vehicle distance. Aside from that, it is also able to operate on low-speed which can reach a limit of up to 24mph.

LDA or Lane Departure Alert

This feature provides the driver with a visual and audible warning, together with steering assistance if required. The system can also detect too much weaving in the driving lane which can indicate drowsiness, inattention or distraction from the driver.

LTA or Lane Tracing Assist

This lane centering function makes regular inputs to the car’s steering to aid the driver in keeping within its lane.

AHB or Automatic High Beam

If this is enabled, it will detect the headlights of incoming vehicles together with their taillights and will switch automatically between high and low beams appropriately.

RSA or Road Sign Assist

This feature is created so it can recognize the speed limit, yield, stop and do not enter signs on roads. It then displays the detected signs on the MID of the vehicle to help the driver notice them.