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Geneva show: Toyota to debut facelifted Corolla hatch

Corolling on: Toyota's facelifted Corolla hatch will arrive mid-year.

A nip and tuck for top-selling Toyota Corolla will be shown at Geneva motor show

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Toyota logo24 Feb 2015

By TIM ROBSON

TOYOTA’S evergreen number one, the Corolla hatchback, will be the recipient of a minor makeover that will be previewed at the Geneva motor show next week.

The 11th-generation Corolla – code-named E170 – was launched in October 2012 in four grades, all powered by the 2ZR-FE 1.8-litre four-cylinder petrol engine.

The front clip has been made over with new headlights and a full-width lower grille section, while the side repeaters have been moved from the wing mirrors to the front guards.

Internally, a larger infotainment touchscreen, a redesigned gearshift surround, restyled climate controls and revised outside airvents make up the bulk of the revisions.

Press releases refer to “new comfort and safety equipment”, which points to an update of active safety systems that will likely introduce lane departure, frontal collision avoidance and cross-traffic alert systems to the line-up.

The recently updated RAV4 SUV was the first locally sold Toyota to offer these features as standard. All manual variants were also dropped in this update, however it is unlikely the same fate will befall the Corolla, which also comes with continuously variable transmission (CVT) option.

Toyota Australia has indicated that the current 103kW naturally aspirated engine will be retained, albeit in a retuned state.

The facelifted Corolla hatch is expected to arrive in August this year. It will continue to be sourced from Toyota’s Motor East Japan subsidiary in Miyagi Prefecture, Japan.

Toyota's Thai-built Corolla sedan was only launched in early 2014, and as such is not due for an upgrade in the foreseeable future, according to sources at Toyota.

The Corolla topped the Australian sales charts in 2014 for the second straight year, with 43,735 cars sold.

Second-placed Mazda3 – which was the top-selling model in Australia in 2011 and 2012 – captured 43,313 sales last year, while Hyundai's i30 was the third best-selling small car with 31,505 units shifted.

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