The Corolla Cross 1.8 Hybrid may be one of Toyota's most fuel-efficient crossovers to date. But despite its ability to save fuel, some believe it could use a bit more power under the hood. Toyota seems to have heard customers' pleas and introduced a more powerful hybrid powertrain for the crossover. Unfortunately, it might take a while for it to arrive in Southeast Asia.
This is the 2022 Corolla Cross for the European market, and it's the first Toyota model globally to be powered by the brand's 5th generation hybrid system. It builds on the success of the previous generation's design, but benefits from more power, improved fuel efficiency, and a new lithium-ion battery pack which Toyota claims is 40% lighter.
Instead of a 1.8-liter engine, the upgraded Corolla Cross Hybrid now comes with a 2.0-liter Dynamic Force engine that makes 152 PS and 190 Nm of torque alone. Together with an electric motor now powered by a lithium-ion battery, Toyota claims the total system output of the Corolla Cross Hybrid is now rated at 197 PS. Compared to the 1.8 Hybrid we currently have, the new powertrain makes an additional 75 PS.
Thanks to the power increase, Toyota says the Corolla Cross Hybrid can sprint from 0 – 100 km/h in just 8.1 seconds. It can also be specified with a powerful rear electric motor which turns the crossover into an all-wheel-drive hybrid. The rear motor provides an additional 30.6 kW (or 41 PS) and automatically engages to improve traction in low-grip situations.
Besides having a more powerful hybrid engine, the Euro-spec Corolla Cross also gains tech upgrades in the cabin. For starters, there's a new 12.3-inch digital instrument panel which Toyota says is the largest in the segment. Aside from the tachometer, speedometer, and multi-info display, the large screen can also show points of interest, the navigation system, and even real-time status of the hybrid system.
Complementing the digital cluster is a new touchscreen media system. It measures 10.5-inches and benefits from a faster processor. In addition, it features wireless Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and a Toyota Smart Connect package.
Sales of the upgraded Toyota Corolla Cross Hybrid in Europe are expected to begin in Q3 of 2022. With that in mind, we can expect other global markets to get the more powerful Corolla Cross Hybrid late next year. Hopefully, Toyota Motor Philippines will eventually offer it here.