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Review of the 2023 Toyota Corolla Hybrid: Enhancements for an Even Better Experience

Image Source: Miro Vrlik Photography / Shutterstock

Despite the current trend favoring crossovers, the Toyota Corolla holds significance for the brand. Across its 12 generations, the Corolla has remained a top choice for those seeking a reliable compact sedan or hatchback. Toyota has introduced a range of minor upgrades for the 2023 model year to further enhance the appeal of the Corolla.

The 2023 Corolla lineup features subtle styling refinements, enhanced technological capabilities, and improved safety features. Among the variants, the Corolla Hybrid stands out, surpassing even the impressive GR Corolla. The hybrid model now offers a wider selection of trim levels and the option for all-wheel drive functionality.

The highlight of the interior enhancements is the new infotainment system, which runs on Toyota’s latest platform through an 8-inch touchscreen supporting wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. This updated system boasts improved user-friendliness, enhanced graphics, and faster responsiveness. However, one drawback is the conspicuous amount of glossy black plastic framing the screen, giving the system a somewhat dated appearance despite the advancements.

In terms of safety, the Corolla now comes equipped with the enhanced Toyota Safety Sense 3.0 suite, which includes features such as cyclist and motorcycle detection, along with a Proactive Driving Assistant capable of making minor adjustments to braking and steering.

The Corolla Hybrid is powered by a 1.8-liter gasoline engine and two motor generators, producing a combined output of 134 horsepower and 158 pound-feet of torque, an improvement over the previous model’s 121 hp and 146 lb-ft. It has transitioned from a nickel-metal hydride battery pack to a new lithium-ion battery. Additionally, an extra electric motor is now available for the rear wheels, enabling all-wheel drive functionality. Despite the increased power ratings, the Corolla Hybrid may feel lacking in responsiveness when quick acceleration is needed.

On the upside, the 2023 Corolla Hybrid achieves an impressive fuel efficiency rating of 50 mpg in the city, 43 mpg on the highway, and 47 mpg combined, slightly lower than the previous model’s 53/52/52 mpg. The all-wheel drive variant achieves 47 mpg city, 41 mpg highway, and 44 mpg combined.

The 2023 Corolla Hybrid is offered in three trim levels: LE, SE, and XLE, presenting more options to buyers compared to its initial release when it was only available in the LE trim. The SE trim also gets a new Infrared Edition featuring sportier suspension and red exterior and interior accents. All-wheel drive is exclusive to the LE and SE trims.

Pricing for the 2023 Toyota Corolla Hybrid starts at $23,895 for front-wheel drive and $25,295 for all-wheel drive.

While the updates for the 2023 Corolla are modest and may not be groundbreaking, they serve to refine what was already a commendable hybrid sedan. The Corolla Hybrid remains a strong contender for anyone seeking a practical and efficient compact hybrid sedan option.

Image Source: Miro Vrlik Photography / Shutterstock

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