2023 Toyota Corolla Cross Hybrid Review
The Toyota Corolla Cross Hybrid is far from the most exciting car on Australian roads, but it might be one of the best. While we love cruising around in funky French things, fast sports cars, and silent electric vehicles, there’s something to be said for a car that gets the job done on all fronts without fuss. And if you’re looking for an efficient hybrid SUV with such things as Apple CarPlay then we strongly suggest you keep reading our review of the Toyota Corolla Cross Hybrid Atmos.
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Toyota Corolla Cross Hybrid at a Glance
|High Point||Low Point||Verdict|
|Does exactly what it says on the tin. The hybrid system is exactly what you’d hope for, it’s good on fuel, seamlessly integrated, and provides enough power for your commute. The infotainment system is leaps and bounds ahead of where it used to be.||There’s nothing that stands out in particular, it’s just a great car. We’d like a little more flair in the cabin, there are a lot of ‘same colour’ plastics and stitching. VW Group offerings from the likes of Cupra do better in this regard.||Yes, the Toyota Corolla Cross Hybrid might do everything it says on the tin and nothing more, but if you’re dropping nearly $50,000 AUD on a family car that’s due to last the next 7-years, we can’t think of a safer and smarter option currently.|
How Much Does the Toyota Corolla Cross Hybrid Cost?
Pricing for the Toyota Corolla Cross range starts from $33,000 AUD before on-road costs. Our test car was a Toyota Corolla Cross Atmos Hybrid 2WD that starts from $46,050 AUD before on-road costs or about $50,320 AUD drive away.
- Toyota Corolla Cross GX – from $33,000 AUD plus on-road costs.
- Toyota Corolla Cross GX Hybrid – from $35,500 AUD plus on-road costs.
- Toyota Corolla Cross GXL – from $36,750 AUD plus on-road costs.
- Toyota Corolla Cross GXL 2WD Hybrid – from $39,250 AUD plus on-road costs.
- Toyota Corolla Cross GXL 4WD Hybrid – from $42,250 AUD plus on-road costs.
- Toyota Corolla Cross Atmos 2WD – from $43,550 AUD plus on-road costs.
- Toyota Corolla Cross Atmos 2WD Hybrid – from $46,050 AUD plus on-road costs.
- Toyota Corolla Cross Atmos 4WD Hybrid – from $49,050 AUD plus on-road costs.
In a rather strange turn of events, this makes the Corolla Cross almost the same price as the waitlisted and ever-popular Toyota RAV4 Cruiser AWD Hybrid (priced from $48,750 before on-road costs). In terms of competitors in this price bracket, you’re looking at the likes of the Mazda CX-30 Astina AWD (priced from $48,190 before on-road costs), Honda HR-V e:HEV L (priced from $47,000 drive-away), and Haval Jolion Ultra Hybrid (priced from $40,990 drive-away) on the cheaper end.
All models come with a five-year, unlimited-kilometre warranty. This can be extended to seven years for the powertrain if the car is serviced using Toyota’s capped-price service program that costs $230 AUD every 12 months or 15,000 km.
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What Powers the Toyota Corolla Cross Atmos Hybrid?
|Toyota Corolla Cross Atmos Hybrid|
|Engine||2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine w/ front axle e-motor|
|Power||112kW + 83kW electric motor upfront|
|Torque||190Nm + 206Nm electric motor upfront|
|Acceleration||0-100 km/h in 7.6 seconds|
The engine and e-motor combination in the Toyota Corolla Cross Hybrid isn’t going to set any benchmarks in the performance categories. However, it’s enough to get you around and merge into tricky traffic situations where necessary.
Being a conventional hybrid powertrain (not a Plug-in Hybrid), the engine cuts in quite often. There is an ‘EV Mode’ that will do its best to keep the car in electric mode when you’re putting around town, but we found it turns itself off once you get beyond 40km/h.
Ultimately, the electric motors are there to help it achieve the claimed fuel economy figure of just 4.4 litres per 100km on the combined cycle. Depending on the number of hills and speed limits on your average commute, you’ll achieve that figure quite easily. The more stop/ start traffic the better as it leans on the e-motors and battery.
Finally, 91 RON regular unleaded fuel is the drink of choice for the Corolla Cross.
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How Does the Toyota Corolla Cross Hybrid Drive?
As mentioned, the engine isn’t the most exciting thing on earth, but it does a great job of getting you from A to B. It’s smooth and remains quiet under normal operation. Lean on the power a bit, however, and the CVT transmission will rev the engine out quite aggressively, upsetting an otherwise relaxing experience when driving around in ‘EV Mode’. That being said, the transition between electric and petrol is seamless.
It’s quite happy sitting on the freeway speed limit and rides well over expansion joints. Thankfully, Toyota is one of the few manufacturers left that realises 20-inch wheels are not suitable for most Australian roads. We’re big fans of the 18-inch alloy wheels fitted as standard on the range-topping Atmos model, they look great, and they help with potholes and general ride comfort.
Steering is rather numb all around, but who’s looking for maximum driver engagement in this segment anyway? It’s light and helps make car park manoeuvers and roundabouts ever so easy.
In terms of safety and driver assistance features, we found they worked flawlessly on the Corolla Cross. We had no issues with the lane-keep or lane-centring assist, while the adaptive cruise control is accurate and slows you down in a natural manner. It’s far from those invasive and quite frankly dangerous systems found on budget SUVs like the new Chery Omoda 5. A reminder, not all driver assistance features are created equal.
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What’s the Interior Like on the Toyota Corolla Cross Hybrid?
It’s in the name really because the Corolla Cross Hybrid is all out Toyota in the cabin. However, when you consider it’s on par with cars such as the LandCruiser (which can cost nearly three times the price), it seems like a relative bargain. The brand itself has never positioned itself as a boundary pusher on the design front, however, the pragmatic nature of the interior tells you longevity will never be an issue.
Ergonomically speaking, it offers a higher seating position than its namesake partner while sharing such features as a dashboard and steering wheel. Those who are looking for a car with easy access, look no further.
Of course, those looking for a little more rear legroom in their Yaris Cross will find it in the Corolla Cross. Opt for a panoramic sunroof as found in our Atmos model and you’ll lose a little headroom, but the tradeoff is worth it. Rear passengers will also find USB-C ports and rear aircon vents for comfort.
Boot space in the 2WD variant is 35 litres more than the 4WD at 415 litres.
How About the Infotainment System?
Toyota has made a leap with the infotainment system, as while others have been pushing the boundaries in the screen size department, it’s always seemed that the brand applied the ‘less is more’ theory.
Not the case here, as you’ll find a quick 10.25-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto alongside a large 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster. Climate controls sit below the screen, with physical buttons for the fan speed, recirculation, auto, and dials for the temperature itself.
We’re not quite sure why Toyota only offers one front USB-A port, but it’s enough to power your phone if it doesn’t have wireless capabilities. A USB-C port or two would be preferable.
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Is the Toyota Corolla Cross Hybrid Safe?
While it’s yet to be crash tested by ANCAP in Australia, the standard Toyota Corolla has a five-star rating. In terms of safety features, they’re as follows on the Toyota Corolla Cross Hybrid.
Atmos Hybrid adds the following over the GX and GXL:
- Enhanced panoramic view monitor (360 cameras).
- Advanced Park Assist.
- Parking support brake incl. pedestrian detection.
GX standard safety features include:
- 8 airbags incl. front-centre airbags.
- Reversing camera.
- Toyota Safety Sense includes the following.
- AEB with Pedestrian, Cyclist detection
- Adaptive cruise control incl. curve speed reduction
- Auto high-beam
- Lane departure warning
- Lane keep assist
- Lane Trace Assist (centring)
- Lane change assist
- Speed sign assist
- Blind-spot monitoring incl. safe exit assist.
- Rear cross-traffic alert.
GXL adds the following over the GX:
- Parking support brake including vehicle and object detection.
- 360 cameras.
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Man of Many’s Verdict on the Toyota Corolla Cross Hybrid
The Toyota Corolla Cross Atmos 2WD Hybrid is priced at $46,050 AUD plus on-road costs, which is almost $10,000 more expensive than the GXL Hybrid grade (from $39,250 AUD plus on-road costs). As is the case with the LandCruiser, our choice lies with the cheaper GXL variant that misses out on a few features but poses a better value-for-money proposition.
Ultimately, there’s no bad way to spend your money on any of the models in the range. Yes, they might do everything they say on the tin and nothing more, but if you’re dropping nearly $50,000 AUD on a family car that’s due to last the next 7-years, we can’t think of a safer and smarter option currently.
Check out the Toyota Corolla Cross
Toyota Corolla Cross Hybrid Standard Features
Atmos adds the following over GX and GXL:
- 18-inch alloy wheels.
- Panoramic sunroof.
- Electric tailgate with kick sensor.
- Leather-accented upholstery.
- Heated front seats.
- 8-way power driver’s seat.
- Heated steering wheel.
- Wireless smartphone charger.
- Rain-sensing wipers.
- 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster.
- Advanced Park Assist.
- 360-degree camera (see-through view).
GXL adds the following over GX:
- LED (high-grade) headlights
- Front fog lights
- Rear privacy glass
- Roof rails
- Leather-accented/fabric upholstery
- Leather-accented steering wheel, shifter
- Electrochromatic rear-view mirror
- Dual-zone climate control
- 10.5-inch touchscreen infotainment
- Satellite navigation
- USB-C rear charge ports
- 360-degree camera system
GX has the following standard features:
- 17-inch alloy wheels
- 17-inch temporary spare wheel
- LED headlights
- LED daytime running lights
- Heated, retractable side mirrors
- Toyota Connected Services, which through the MyToyota app allows:
- Check lock/unlock status
- Check vehicle location
- Log recent trips
- Start the engine and climate control
- Set controls on guest drivers
- Automatic air-conditioning
- Fabric upholstery
- Keyless entry and start
- 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment
- Wireless Apple CarPlay
- Wired Android Auto
- DAB+ radio
- 6-speaker audio
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