Toyota Corolla Touring Sports Hybrid engines, drive & performance

Those expecting a repeat of the Auris' dull driving experience will be pleasantly surprised by the Corolla Touring Sports, particularly in more powerful 2.0-litre guise

0-62mph Top speed Driven wheels Power
8.1-11.1s 112mph Front 120-178bhp

It's fair to say Toyota's hybrids have generally not been known for blistering performance up to now. That's of course not really the point of cars like this, but Toyota is nonetheless catering for those who want a bit more oomph with the new 178bhp 2.0-litre hybrid engine debuting in the Corolla.

It'll be particularly welcomed by those who plan to regularly drive with their Touring Sports' boot fully loaded, but others will probably be perfectly happy with the familiar 120bhp 1.8-litre option.

Toyota Corolla Touring Sports Hybrid 0-62mph, top speed and acceleration

The Touring Sports estate is very slightly slower to accelerate than its hatchback counterpart. Going from 0-62mph takes 8.1 seconds with the 2.0-litre engine and 11.1 seconds with the 1.8-litre, versus 7.9 and 10.9 respectively for the hatchback.

Note that the more powerful 2.0-litre engine can only be specified with Design or Excel trim, making it quite an expensive proposition. Those used to 2.0-litre diesel-engined estate cars from other manufacturers may still prefer it, however.

Like the hatchback, the Corolla Touring Sports can also be had with a 1.2-litre turbocharged petrol engine, with no hybrid drive. Performance falls between the two hybrids, with 0-62mph taking 9.6 seconds and a top speed of 121mph.

Handling

There's no major impact on the driving experience if you go for the Corolla Touring Sports over the hatchback. Like that car, it's much better to drive than its Auris predecessor, and if you go for the 2.0-litre hybrid engine, there are artificially 'stepped' ratios built into the CVT gearbox, so you can perform manual gearshifts.

Overall, the Corolla isn't as involving to drive as a Ford Focus nor quite as comfortable as a Volkswagen Golf, but the differences are small and it's pretty impressive in its own right.