By Otsile Kadiege
The Toyota Corolla Cross has been a local hit and a propellant of Toyota South Africa’s sales success since its launch last year. That said, the model has been on sale in numerous markets like Europe for quite some time now and it’s ready for a mid-life refresh with updated exterior styling, new technologies and an AWD drivetrain.
Minor exterior and interior updates
Outside, the Corolla Cross gets subtle exterior styling updates like slim bi-LED headlights with sequential turn indicators and LED light guides for higher-spec models. The wheel designs include a 17-inch alloy with a silver finish and tool-like graphic that accentuates the rim, adding the strong design impact. The 18-inch wheels have a contrast bright machined and dark grey finish and a design that entwines the rim and spokes.
Featured as standard on all Corolla Cross models is a 10.5-inch high-definition touchscreen display. The model marks the first appearance of Toyota’s new customisable 12.3-inch fully digital combimeter (standard on all versions). Similarly, there is also a new 12.3-inch touchscreen display running on Toyota Smart Connect multimedia infotainment system with wireless Apple CarPlay and wired Android Auto.
It also gets a USB-A port and wireless charger in the front console and two USB-C ports for rear passengers.
Safety and driver assistance systems
The updated Corolla Cross is fitted with the latest Toyota Safety Sense systems which includes eight SRS airbags, improved Pre-Collision System (PCS), Emergency Steering Assist (ESA), Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC), Overtake Prevention Support, Lane Trace Assist (LTA), Lane Departure Alert (LDA) w/Steering Control, Lane Centring function and Emergency Driving Stop System (EDSS). It will also include Proactive Driving Assist (PDA). Proactive Driving Assist (PDA) which further includes Obstacle Anticipation Assist (OAA), Deceleration Assist (DA) and Steering Assist (SA)
High grade models will feature semi-autonomous Toyota Teammate Advanced Park system, which uses an array of 4 Panoramic View Monitor cameras and 12 ultrasonic sensors to move the vehicle smoothly into a parking space, with the driver only required to check the surroundings and operate the shift when prompted.
Increased performance outputs
The updated Corolla Cross is available with 1.8- and 2.0-litre powertrains with front-wheel drive, plus optional intelligent all-wheel drive (AWD-i) for the 2.0-litre. The 1.8 system benefits from a 15% increase in output, to 103 kW, giving 0-100 km/h acceleration in 9.9 seconds. Maximum power for the 2.0 system is up 8% to 145 kW, cutting the 0-100 km/h to 7.6 seconds for FWD and to 7.5 seconds for AWD.
Toyota also re-calibrated the Corolla Cross’ electric power steering and its suspension systems – front MacPherson struts and rear trailing wishbones – are said to be optimised to for ride comfort with less shock and vibration when travelling over uneven surfaces.
Fifth-gen Toyota hybrid electric powertrains
The facelifted Corolla Cross is the first model globally to use the fifth generation of Toyota’s self-charging hybrid electric system. The changes introduced for the fifth generation hybrid electric system include components that weigh less and are more compact.
It also has a new lithium-ion hybrid battery which is smaller and lighter but has a higher output. Compared to the battery pack deployed in the previous system, weight is down by -14% and output up by 14%. Toyota has optimised the battery’s cooling system to secure quieter performance and longer battery life.
European sales of Corolla Cross will commence in Autumn 2022 depending on the market.
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