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By Jonathan Crouch
Added 6th December, 2019
, updated 16th November, 2020
Toyota's Corolla has returned the brand to prominence in the family hatchback segment. Jonathan Crouch takes a look at the latest version.
Though opinion may be divided as to whether the RAV4 invented the soft roading segment, no one doubts that, more than any other, this model defined it. In some ways, it continues to do just that, for this car still sums up most of what a model of this kind should be all about. Smart, wieldy, reasonably spacious, affordable to run and with just enough SUV-ness about it to get you to the places you tend to dream about but will probably never go.
This fifth generation version has brought notable changes - extra space and technology, lower running costs and a more dynamic drive - timely improvements, even if there are still other rivals that better it either on or off road. Few though, provide a stronger compromise between the two and none can better the unimpeachable build quality and strong residuals that have become a RAV4 trademark. There's a choice between self-charging and Plug-in Hybrid powertrains.
The GR Yaris hot hatch shows Toyota's extreme side. Jonathan Crouch takes a look...
This improved post-2017 third generation Yaris isn't the contender you'll want in this segment if ultimately, your priority lies with a dynamic drive. To be frank though, we can't imagine too many potential buyers being especially bothered by that. These people prioritise endearing looks over engaging handling and want a trusted brand that'll deliver them low running costs, a comfortable ownership experience and plenty of useful technology. All of which is on offer here, especially in the Hybrid variant that still remains a unique choice amongst used superminis from this period in this segment.
So, how to sum up? Well, there are doubtless more engaging chapters in the Yaris story still to be written, but what's important is that the updates introduced here put this third generation version back on track. Toyota, it seems, knows how to right a best seller.
Toyota's Corolla Saloon blends an old-school look with modern tech. Jonathan Crouch takes a look.
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