Toyota's trusty Corolla compact sedan enters its 12th generation on a new platform that promises a quieter, more agile ride and engines tuned for more power and better fuel efficiency.
Now the Corolla must prove it can deliver more stability and power to Toyota Motor Sales' U.S. car sales, which are down 11 percent this year through October.
A boost from the redesigned Corolla and its variants would help Toyota as it clears out a cluttered small-car lineup that has included the extended Prius hybrid family and a motley trio of Scion leftovers.
Underpinnings: The 2020 Corolla is built on the Toyota New Global Architecture, which underpins most of the brand's car lineup, from the Prius to the full-size Avalon. Toyota says the vehicle incorporates new approaches to design, engineering, assembly and materials to reduce weight and improve fuel economy, safety and driving dynamics.
Interior: The instrument panel, cowl, hood and beltline height are lower than on the previous version to increase visibility and create a more open feel in the cabin, Toyota says. An 8-inch touch screen gives access to audio controls, navigation and vehicle settings.
Safety: The sedan comes standard with the Toyota Safety Sense 2.0 suite that includes a precollision alert and braking-assistance system, dynamic cruise control and lane-departure alert.
Powertrain: The L, LE and XLE trims carry over the 1.8-liter engine from the previous generation, but are tuned for more horsepower and fuel efficiency, Toyota says.
The XSE and SE grades get a new 2.0-liter direct-injection inline four.
Three-pronged attack: With help from a recently launched hatchback and a hybrid to be introduced this month at the Los Angeles Auto Show, Toyota seeks to shore up the nameplate's U.S. sales, which are down 11 percent this year, dragging down overall U.S. sales.