The modern automotive realm is broad enough for the concept of performance to mean different things to different people. Take the new Toyota Corolla Hybrid sedan, for example.
The strength of this first-time hybrid version of the 12th-generation Corolla is its ability to stretch a gallon of petrol to ridiculous lengths. Clocking in at an EPA-estimated 52 mpg in combined city/highway driving, the Corolla Hybrid has a range of better than 500 miles between fill-ups.
If you’re expecting plush accommodations, though, you’ll be disappointed; the Corolla Hybrid is offered only in a low-level LE trim—and only as a sedan. Apple CarPlay smartphone connectivity is standard, but Android Auto is unavailable.
On the road, the Corolla Hybrid’s forte is its frugality: It feels great to be able to drive all over creation for a week and still have plenty of fuel for your weekend adventures. Acceleration is leisurely, and handling and ride quality lean more toward comfort than sportiness. But that’s no great loss if you know the kind of performance you’ve signed up for going in.
Added peace of mind comes from Toyota's comprehensive collection of standard advanced safety features, including forward automotive emergency braking, forward-collision warning, adaptive cruise control, and lane-keeping assist.
With the Auto Club's free Car Buying Service, members can enjoy a no-hassle experience when purchasing a new or used vehicle. Get estimated pricing and access to online inventory before visiting a AAA-recommended dealer near you. For details, go to AAA.com/auto or call 800-709-7222.
Vehicle layout: 1.8-liter inline 4, electric motor (121 hp total), CVT, FWD
MSRP, base model: $24,055; (as tested: $25,233)
MPG, city/hwy/combined: 53/52/52
Safety ratings: NHTSA: 5 stars overall; IIHS: good (all ratings)
Spare tire: Tire-repair kit
Final assembly: Aichi, Japan
Basic warranty: 3 years/36,000 miles