11 months ago

Selwyn Times: October 18, 2016

42 Tuesday

42 Tuesday October 18 2016 SELWYN TIMES Along with versatility and an unbeatable warranty, all the features you need from a family SUV are in the new Outlander 2WD LS. Visit, call 03 379 0588 or come and see us on the cnr Montreal & St Asaph Streets, Christchurch. * Price listed is for Outlander 2WD LS. Price excludes On Road Costs which includes WoF, Registration and a full tank of fuel. See for Diamond Advantage terms and conditions. cnr Montreal & St Asaph Streets, Christchurch. Sales, Service & Parts: 03 379 0588 My Kaywa QR-Code SELWYN TIMES Tuesday October 18 2016 43 Driven Fuel-friendly Toyota Corolla hybrid • By Ross Kiddie • Price – Toyota Prius, $47,490 MY SUSPICIONS have been confirmed – I’m not an economical driver. How did I come to this conclusion? Well, Toyota New Zealand invited me to the launch of the new Corolla hybrid, and the event was held at Feilding’s Manfeild Autocourse facility. As a group of journalists we were tasked with the challenge of driving the vehicles around the track, and obstacles, against the clock for a set distance, yet trying to achieve the most economical fuel usage result. While my figures were midfield and a lot better than some of the group, the winners had results vastly better than mine. There was some conjecture as to the method some drivers used to achieve winning figures, but the reality is that even though I thought I was being light-footed, I wasn’t. What the exercise served to prove is that the Corolla hybrid can be made a very economical car to drive. Toyota rate it with a 4.1-litre per 100km (69mpg) combined cycle average, which was close to where my Manfeild figure sat. On my home turf and after driving the car for four days, TOYOTA COROLLA: Hybrid technology borrowed from Prius. the trip computer was listing a 6l/100km (47mpg) average when I took it back to the dealership. Those, along with a 4l/100km instantaneous figure when cruising the open road speed limit, are good results for a vehicle which will be sold on the basis that it is a fuel miser. The hybrid sits near the top of the Corolla range, joining the seven-model line-up at $38,490, bearing in mind that the range starts at $31,990 and ends at $41,990. The hybrid is GLXbased, which means it doesn’t get all the specification items that are offered in other variants, but it does get a reasonable level of fitment which will satisfy those who want a car where economy is more important that status. Based around the mechanicals which have made Prius a household word in terms of hybrid technology, the Corolla hybrid utilises a 1.8-litre petrol engine coupled to the Synergy system which transfers drive though a continuously variable automatic transmission. The combination develops a total of around 100kW and 142Nm, varying at any given time depending on whether the engine is active and/or batteries are supplying the drive. Of course, electric propulsion is the ultimate aim, and if situations allowed, that would be the case but, of course, • Dimensions – Length, 4540mm; width, 1760mm; height, 1475mm • Configuration – Fourcylinder, front-wheel-drive, 1798cc, 90kW, 142Nm, CVT. • Performance – 0-100km/h, 11sec • Fuel usage – 3.4l/100km battery capacity is constantly exhausted, and as a vehicle it is required to accelerate and maintain momentum, which is why the petrol engine operates at will. However, hybrid systems are here to stay, and until there are alternative technologies in place it is the best option for those whose welfare of the environment is a major car buying factor. When it comes time to tackle a quick corner or two it steers with precision and reacts favourably to steering input. If you also take into account that the batteries create a more even front/rear weight distribution, body balance is controlled, and there is just gentle movement over the suspension. The latter is a fully independent type which is in contrast to the tube beam system of its nonhybrid stablemates. I’ve long been an advocate of independent rear suspension, and the doublewishbone system of the hybrid is absorbent yet allows wheel freedom which is translated into control under load. The tyres are a low rolling resistance Michelin compound (205/55 x 16in), nevertheless, they have enough grip on offer to combat gravitational force under pressure, and offer substantial steering feel for the driver. The Corolla hybrid can’t be considered a quick car, but it will return a standstill to 100km/h acceleration time of 11sec, which suggests that it is still has respectable speed for which we have come to expect from mainstream Corollas. Toyota has a raft of hybrid models on the domestic market, and here in New Zealand we only get handful of variants with many of those coming via Lexus. That being the case, the Corolla hybrid is an important car for Toyota New Zealand, and if you consider it sits neatly between Prius C ($29,990), Prius ($47,490) and Camry ($50,790), it is a tempting proposition for those who have come to embrace the hybrid concept, or for those who just want to experience it for the first time. 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