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Car Reviews / 11-09-17

2017 Toyota Corolla SE 50th Anniversary Edition

The unrelenting standard

By Kevin C. Limjoco


Still the best-selling car model in the world, the Toyota Corolla celebrates its 50th anniversary as a truly global vehicle after 11 solid generations of commercial success dating back to 1966. We tested the compact North American face-lifted model that champions the incredible automotive success just as the Philippines received our own updated model. The differences between our two models are mostly cosmetic and the Philippines actually gets the better engines once again. I do prefer the US model’s multi-LED headlights and the front vertical DRL LED looks great but the Philippine model gets fog lamps which the Americans do not.

Our special edition test unit came in Black Cherry Pearl and it had some unique packaging features found only in this model from the new aerodynamic front scoop, badging, moonroof, new 17-inch alloys with contrasting dark-gray-painted inserts and bright machined spokes shod with sticky 215/45R17 87W Firestone FR740 tires, larger 7-inch touchscreen infotainment and 4.2-inch multi-information display systems backed up by surprisingly good performing 6-speakers, door trim with Black Cherry accents, Black Cherry contrast stitching on shift boot and dashboard, sporty seats with SofTex® faux leather and matching Black Cherry accent piping, leather steering wheel also with matching Black Cherry stitching, and matching floor mats, to the standard Toyota Safety Sense™ suite of technologies which includes adaptive cruise control and rear spoiler.

What the Corolla lacks in dynamic energy is compensated by its good ride comfort, reliability and dependability. The rear seats are also the most spacious in its class. It actually has a Sport mode once again to liven up throttle response a bit while altering the center instrument MID cluster to signify that the mode is engaged together with the virtual shifting. It’s a cute gesture. Once again, the Corolla is a robust instrument of transportation, a no-brainer purchase for many and with merit. It seems to also have a quieter cabin now which is always welcome.

Specification – 2017 Toyota Corolla SE 50th Anniversary Edition

Engine: Inline-4, 1798 cc, dohc 16V, Port Injection, VVT, 7-speed CVT

Max power: 132 bhp @ 6000 rpm

Max torque: 128 lb ft @ 4400 rpm

0-100 km/h (0-62mph): 9.7 sec.

Top Speed: 184 km/h (115 mph) Governed

Fuel Mileage: 28 mpg City & 35 mpg Highway

Price as tested: US$ 24,497.00

C! RATING 9/10

+Still a very competent and reliable everyday car, good sounding stock audio, comfortable, value-packed

-Would be a lot better with the 2.0-liter engine available in our domestic market, no front fog lamps, jumpy handling