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Driven: Toyota’s Corolla sedan kicks off from $20,740

Boot scooter: Toyota’s Thai-sourced Corolla sedan comes at a $750 premium over the Japan-sourced hatchback, but adds more gear.

More gear, higher starting price for Thai-sourced Corolla with a boot

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Toyota logo18 Feb 2014

TOYOTA has surprised industry observers with higher pricing for the all-new Corolla Sedan compared to the equivalent Hatch model.

Kicking off from $20,740 plus on-road costs for the Ascent manual, the 11th-generation four-door small car commands a $750 premium despite being sourced from Thailand – which has a free trade agreement with Australia – rather than Japan, which doesn’t.

Sourcing the Corolla wearing a boot from Thailand had prompted speculation that the base Corolla Sedan would start from less than $20,000.

However, Toyota Australia executive director of sales and marketing, Tony Cramb, said a decision was made to add more standard features such as a reverse camera, rear parking sensors and a 6.1-inch touchscreen multimedia interface to the newcomer.

The result, he says, is an equipment upgrade of about $2000 in value compared with the outgoing model.

Toyota also said the Corolla sedan was $250 cheaper than when its predecessor was launched in 2007 – and that’s before a 21 percent rise in the Consumer Price Index was factored in.

Meanwhile, the mid-range Corolla SX – which replaces the old Ascent Sport and Conquest nomenclature – starts from $22,990 plus on-road costs.

While that puts it at $500 more than the former, Toyota said it represented a $1500 saving compared with the preceding Conquest. Similarly, the latter cost $2510 more than the new SX when released seven years ago.

Both these prices are for models equipped with a standard six-speed manual gearbox. Upgrading to the new continuously variable transmission with seven pre-set ratios adds $2250.

Finally the CVT-only ZR flagship starts from $30,990 plus on-road costs – $1000 less than its now-discontinued Ultima equivalent.

These prices are for the flat white paint only. Adding metallic/premium paint adds $450.

Toyota’s capped price servicing remains at $130 per visit, set at six-month intervals.

This is the first time Toyota has offered a Thai-built passenger car in this country.

2014 Toyota Corolla sedan pricing*
1.8L Ascent$20,740
1.8L Ascent (a)$22,990
1.8L SX$22,990
1.8L SX (a)$25,240
1.8L ZR (a)$30,990
*Excludes on-road costs.

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