Tuesday, June 13, 2017

2017 Toyota Corolla iM Hatchback

Highlight: The iM was formerly a Scion, but now it’s a Toyota Corolla.

Test Vehicles MSRP: $20,375 (Base Model: $19,635)

Seating Capacity: 5

Standard Safety Features:  automatic headlights; a rearview camera; a lane departure warning system; a pre-collision braking system; automatic headlight beams; a traction control system; ABS; and airbags 

Standard Equipment (Base Model): 17-inch wheels; manual transmission; front wheel drive; a dual zone manual ventilation system; a remote keyless entry system; cloth seats; manually operated front seats; chrome exhaust tips; sporty exterior body kit; a remote keyless entry system; a manually operated tilt and telescopic steering; and a leather-wrapped steering wheel

Options: None

Other Trim Levels: None

Standard Audio On Test Vehicle: a Pioneer 6-speaker with AM/FM/HD

Bluetooth Connectivity: Yes

USB Connectivity: Yes

Bumper-to-Bumper Warranty: 3 years or 36,000 miles

Powertrain Warranty: 5 years or 60,000 miles

Standard Engine/Horsepower: 1.8-liter, 4-cylinder turbo/137-hp

Recommended Fuel: Regular

Standard Fuel Mileage:

What’s New: It is essentially a rebadged Scion iM outfitted with Toyota’s latest standard safety assist braking system.

Why: For the price point, this is a great vehicle. This compact, which is available with a manual or an automatic transmission, offers adequate power and a number of safety amenities.

This is one of the first vehicles in this segment, making forward collision braking, a lane departure system and a rearview camera standard. More importantly, Toyota packed these safety components into a compact, at a price that wouldn’t break the bank. Ironically, a number of the noted features aren’t even available on the competitors.

While this hatchback might lack such features as a leather seating area, power seats, heated front (and rear) seats, a power sunroof and a high tech infotainment system, the upside is that this greatly reduces the time the vehicle will spend in the shop due to a mechanical failure. Furthermore, this eliminates the chance of the battery life being reduced immensely, too due to the high tech items being added to the vehicles!

But: While the new iM wears the Toyota Corolla name, there is no badging in the vehicle that identifies this vehicle as a Corolla. Go figure?

Besides that notable shortcoming, our only two major knocks are that the vehicle lacks satellite radio and a pop out (or power sunroof). Yes, we are aware that one can use their smartphone to select their desired music list, but there is nothing like having access to a built-in satellite radio.

Verdict: For $20,000, the rebadge Scion is a great value. It’s a stylish looking well-built vehicle. The Corolla iM is outfitted with the latest safety features too. So, for buyers looking for a no thrill and no nonsense vehicle, this Toyota would be on our shopping list.

Competition: 2017 Hyundai Accent; 2017 Ford Fiesta; Honda Fit; 2017 Kia Rio; and 2017 Mazda2

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