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2015 Toyota Corolla

Motor Trend logo Motor Trend 1/21/2015 Stefan Ogbac

New for 2015

New for 2014, the 2015 Toyota Corolla adds more standard equipment in Premium trim levels such as a power moonroof, hands-free keyless access, Entune Premium Audio and multimedia bundle with navigation and smartphone integration, and a rear seat armrest with two cup holders.

Vehicle Summary

The 2015 Corolla is a compact sedan slotting above the subcompact Yaris and under the midsize Camry. It is sold in nine trims and with a choice of a six-speed manual, four-speed automatic or continuously variable transmission (CVT).

Overview

The 2015 Corolla is available with a 1.8-liter I-4 producing 132 hp and 128 lb-ft of torque in the L, LE, and S models, and 140 hp and 126 lb-ft in Eco variants. Fuel economy remains its forte with ratings ranging from 27/36 mpg city/highway in cars equipped with the four-speed automatic to 30/42 mpg in the Eco trim with the 16-inch wheels. Acceleration is lackluster due to the emphasis placed on efficiency, which means there is not much low-end torque. While S models do have some chassis and suspension improvements, the car still has low handling limits.

The 2015 Corolla provides generous interior space for four adults with enough room for people over six feet to "sit behind themselves" and a nearly flat floor in the rear. Tech features such as Toyota's Entune infotainment system is available with a customizable 6.1-inch touchscreen but it is mounted too low that it can "wash out in certain conditions."

The 2015 Toyota Corolla has a five-star safety rating from the NHTSA (out of a possible five stars). The IIHS called the 2014 Corolla a 2013 Top Safety Pick, with Good results in four tests as well as a Marginal score for the more difficult small overlap test (Good is the highest possible score).

What We Think

The 2015 Corolla remains a viable compact car because of its focus on fuel economy and generous interior space, making it ideal as a commuter vehicle and for small families. In a Big Test Comparison of 2014 compact sedans, we said that the Toyota Corolla had the lowest cost of ownership due to its low depreciation and excellent gas mileage. Its dull driving dynamics hold it back with rear axles that upset that car on bumpy pavement and numb steering feel. Additionally, its conservative interior design reminds drivers that the Corolla is a car that serves as basic transportation for the masses.

You'll Like

  • Impressive fuel economy
  • Generous interior space
  • Low cost of ownership

You Won't Like

  • Doesn't drive as good as it looks
  • Infotainment screen washes out in certain lighting conditions
  • Lazy acceleration

Key Competitors

  • Honda Civic
  • Mazda3
  • Kia Forte
  • Ford Focus
  • Subaru Impreza

Rating

3 star

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