What's New for 2014:
- Redesigned inside and out
- Larger interior, more rear-seat room
- Same engine, new transmissions for most trim levels
- New Corolla Eco with high fuel economy ratings
- Standard LED headlights
- Available next-generation Entune infotainment system
The 2014 Toyota Corolla is a sedan that looks like a compact car on the outside and feels like a midsize car on the inside. It competes against a range of models, including the Chevrolet Cruze, Dodge Dart, Ford Focus, Honda Civic, Hyundai Elantra, Kia Forte, Mazda 3, Mitsubishi Lancer, Nissan Sentra, Subaru Impreza, and Volkswagen Jetta.
Models and Features
Toyota sells the 2014 Corolla in L, LE, LE Eco, and S trim levels. The Corolla L is basic, offered with few options. The LE, LE Eco, and S trim levels can be selected with standard, Plus, or Premium equipment packages that can be upgraded with a handful of separate options.
The Corolla LE includes a nicer interior, plus power door locks, remote keyless entry, cruise control, automatic climate control, and an Entune infotainment system with a 6.1-inch touch-screen display, Bluetooth streaming audio, and a reversing camera. The LE also gets a standard continuously variable transmission (CVT), while the LE Eco has a more powerful and fuel-efficient engine combined with a standard rear spoiler that improves aerodynamic drag and, in turn, fuel economy.
The Corolla S is the sporty version, offering a standard manual gearbox, revised steering and suspension tuning, and a more aggressive appearance. The car's instrumentation is unique to this offering, and the front seats are more deeply bolstered. Fog lights, a rear spoiler, leather-wrapped steering wheel, and unique wheel designs complete the look.
Options and Packages
Plus and Premium equipment package contents vary by trim level. The LE Plus gains fog lights and aluminum wheels, while the LE Eco adds chrome exterior trim, an Eco driving mode, and aluminum wheels. For both LE versions, the Premium package includes leatherette seats and heated front seats.
For the Corolla S, the Plus version adds 17-inch aluminum wheels with machined surfaces and black pockets, and rear disc brakes. Choose the manual gearbox and Toyota tosses in a power sunroof, navigation system, premium sound system, Entune Apps technology, and keyless passive entry with push-button starting.
These items are optional for a Corolla S Plus with a CVT, and for a Corolla S Premium. Premium trims include the CVT, plus leatherette seats and heated front seats.
Under the Hood
A 132-horsepower, 1.8-liter 4-cylinder engine is standard for the Corolla L, LE, and S trim levels. In the Corolla L, it is paired with a new 6-speed manual gearbox or a carryover 4-speed automatic transmission. The Corolla L is equipped with a CVT, while the Corolla S offers the manual transmission or a CVT with paddle shifters and unique calibration designed to deliver sportier performance, according to Toyota.
The Corolla LE Eco is equipped with a 140-horsepower, 1.8-liter engine that features what Toyota calls \"Valvematic\" engine technology. This more fuel-efficient engine choice includes a CVT.
According to the EPA, the 2014 Corolla gets 28 mpg in the city and 37 mpg on the highway with the 6-speed manual transmission. The Corolla L's automatic transmission returns 27/36 mpg, while the Corolla LE's CVT is rated to get 29/38 mpg. The Corolla S CVT is expected to deliver 29/37 mpg.
The Corolla LE Eco is more fuel-efficient. Equipped with the standard 15-inch wheels, which reduce aerodynamic drag, this car is rated to get 30 mpg in the city and 42 mpg on the highway. Select the LE Eco Plus or Premium version, with the larger 16-inch aluminum wheels, and the highway rating drops to 40 mpg.
Safety Ratings and Technology
Toyota installs 8 air bags in the new Corolla, and includes Smart Stop technology designed to prevent unintended acceleration. As long as the brake pedal is pressed, the car cannot accidentally accelerate, Toyota says. Options include a reversing camera, and the available Entune infotainment system includes basic text-to-speech capability.
In crash tests conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), the Corolla received the highest possible rating of \"Good\" in all assessments except for the small overlap frontal-impact test, in which the car received a \"Marginal\" rating due to the high likelihood of injury in this type of crash, according to the Institute.
As this overview is written, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has not performed crash tests on the new Corolla.