Toyota Corolla Touring Sports review
The Toyota Corolla Touring Sports hybrid estate adds extra luggage capacity and versatility to the already impressive Corolla hatchback
- Lots of standard safety kit
- Choice of hybrid engines
- Striking exterior styling
- Expensive in higher specs
- Not a class leader for boot space
- Ford Focus more involving to drive
Before this car arrived, there hadn't been a Toyota Corolla estate on sale in the UK for many years, but the familiar name is back as a replacement for the Toyota Auris Touring Sports. A 1.2-litre turbocharged petrol engine was available on lower trim levels for a few months, but from 2020, all Corolla Touring Sports sold in the UK are 1.8 or 2.0-litre hybrids.
The 1.8-litre is the same engine as found in the Toyota C-HR SUV and Toyota Prius hatchback, but the Corolla also introduced a more powerful 2.0-litre, 181bhp setup, with a 0-62mph time of just over eight seconds. It's both more expensive and less efficient than the 1.8-litre, however, so isn't expected to be a popular choice, but Touring Sports buyers who regularly tow or carry heavy loads may prefer it.
The Corolla Touring Sports is intended to make up for the fact that the hatchback Corolla doesn't boast class-leading interior or boot space; it has both greater legroom in the back and a larger luggage compartment than its sister model.
As with the hatchback, low running costs are central to the Corolla Touring Sports' appeal: CO2 emissions start as low as 103g/km and fuel economy tops out at 63mpg in the most efficient specification. From behind the wheel, it feels very similar to the Corolla hatchback – which is to say it's much more satisfying to drive than the Auris, but still some way off class leaders for handling like the Ford Focus and SEAT Leon.
Seats up (and with the 1.8-litre hybrid engine), the Corolla Touring Sports' all-important boot capacity is 598 litres. That's reduced slightly to 581 litres if you go for the 2.0-litre, but still about 25 litres off what the Mk7 Volkswagen Golf Estate could carry.
Standard equipment is decent, so you shouldn't really need to move up more than the second-tier Icon Tech specification to get the kit you need – although the 2.0-litre hybrid engine is only available in the more lavish and expensive Design, GR Sport and Excel specifications. Pleasingly, Toyota's Safety Sense package is standard right across the range.
The Touring Sports looks great from the outside, but it's not quite as revolutionary inside. Everything is cleanly designed and feels sturdy, but there's still a familiar sense of Toyota functionality rather than true luxury for occupants.
If you need a family estate that can withstand a little more punishment, there's also the option of the Corolla Trek – a version of the Touring Sports that adds plastic cladding, raised suspension and some extra standard kit. For more on the Toyota Corolla Touring Sports Hybrid, read on for the rest of our in-depth review...
In This Review
- 1Verdict - currently readingThe Toyota Corolla Touring Sports hybrid estate adds extra luggage capacity and versatility to the already impressive Corolla hatchback
- 2MPG & CO2 emissionsThe Toyota Corolla Touring Sports' efficiency figures are impressive, although a plug-in hybrid will be even cheaper to run
- 3Running costsCompany-car drivers will welcome the Toyota Corolla Touring Sports' low CO2 emissions; other costs should be reasonable, too
- 4Engines, drive & performanceThose expecting a repeat of the Auris' dull driving experience will be pleasantly surprised by the Toyota Corolla Touring Sports
- 5Interior & comfortToyota still isn't the last word in interior style and luxury, but the Corolla Touring Sports is smart-looking, well built and generously equipped
- 6Practicality & boot spaceIt's not the largest estate in its class, but the Toyota Corolla Touring Sports will carry plenty of luggage with ease, and the interior is spacious
- 7Reliability & safetyDetailed reliability data isn't available yet, but the Corolla Touring Sports has performed well in independent crash-testing