The Toyota Corolla Sedan rolls into 2023 a much-changed car, bringing major upgrades to performance, safety and multimedia. Just for good measure, Toyota revved up the front and rear styling to give Corolla an even more compelling presence.
It's not often a car offers higher power and efficiency at the same time, but the 2023 Corolla LE Sedan does just that. The most popular Corolla Sedan grade, the 2023 LE gains the 169-horsepower 2.0L Dynamic Force four-cylinder engine used in all other Corolla gas models. Replacing a 139-hp 1.8L engine, the 2.0L offers much more dynamic performance, with 0-60 two seconds quicker. The 2.0L engine also delivers a boost of 25 lb-ft. of torque over the previous 1.8L, now 151 lb-ft.
Yet, this more powerful engine is also more efficient, improving on fuel economy ratings, with 32 city/41 hwy/35 EPA combined MPG in the LE model vs. 30/38/33 for the 2022 version with the 1.8L engine. The 2.0-liter Dynamic Force engine can achieve 40% thermal efficiency, which is a true measure of how well the engine converts fuel to energy.
That's just for starters. All 2023 Corolla models upgrade to new Toyota Safety Sense 3.0 with new Proactive Driving Assist, including Obstacle Anticipation Assist and Deceleration Assist. Next-generation Toyota Audio Multimedia equips all 2023 Corolla models with an 8-inch high-resolution touch screen and added capabilities, including standard wireless Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™ compatibility. All models add two rear-seat USB-C ports for a total of four in the car.
The wide-ranging enhancements to the 12th-generation Corolla Sedan exemplify Toyota's fervent approach to continuous improvement and customer satisfaction which has sold over 50 million globally since 1966.
Three Model Grades for 2023
The LE becomes the base Toyota Corolla Sedan for 2023, with the L grade discontinued. In addition to its more powerful standard engine, the LE has standard 16-inch steel wheels with covers. The sporty SE and XSE grades add standard Smart Key, enhanced Sport driving mode tuning and red interior accents replacing blue. All Corolla models provide the added value of Safety Connect and Service Connect 10-year trial subscriptions. (The XLE grade is now Hybrid-only.)
The XSE also gains a redesigned 7-inch Fully Digital Gauge Cluster. All other grades feature an updated 4.2-inch MID located between the tachometer and speedometer, allowing the driver to view either analog or digital speedometers. Featuring rich graphics, the easy-to-read MIDs can be custom configured by the driver. Intuitive operation allows access to information for the audio and multimedia systems, navigation, vehicle information including fuel efficiency estimates and tire pressure, as well as TSS 3.0 functions.
In all 2023 Corolla gas engine models, the standard Dynamic Shift continuously variable transmission gives a distinct performance feel thanks to a gearset used as a "first" gear for start-off acceleration, before seamlessly handing off to the CVT's pulley system. Synchronization of the increasing engine revs and vehicle speed provides a linear acceleration feel. Combined with enhanced Sport mode tuning for 2023, the XSE grade also features paddle shifters to engage 10 pre-set ratios to offer a sportier driving experience.
On 2023 Corolla Sedans, new front fascia styling varies across grades, and all receive LED daytime running lights (DRL). The LE in addition adds an updated rear bumper design, while the sporty SE and XSE feature new 18-inch Gloss Graphite-colored alloy wheels.
The revised look is particularly sporty for the SE and XSE gas models, which feature a glossy black mesh-pattern lower grille and more sculptural front fascia, along with a new rear sport diffuser. These sport grades also feature new LED headlights that are more reminiscent of the eyes of a bird of prey.
It wouldn't be a new Toyota model year without some compelling color changes. For the 2023 Corolla Sedan, Midnight Black Metallic replaces Black Sand Pearl, and Underground replaces Blue Cush Metallic. Colors carrying over for 2023 include Ice Cap, Classic Silver Metallic, Celestite and Blueprint. Wind Chill Pearl and Ruby Flare Pearl remain available for extra cost.
The Strong, Silent Type
Corolla's diverse model variety is made possible by the Toyota New Global Architecture-C platform (TNGA-C). A super-rigid structure, low center of gravity and highly refined tuning of the MacPherson-type strut front suspension and available multi-link rear suspension endow all Corolla models with exemplary handling agility, ride comfort and distinctive driving personality. This high-strength platform is fortified through the use of ultra-high-tensile steel as well as the application of structural adhesive technology for enhanced body rigidity and passenger security.
Corolla's cabin is a sanctuary where powertrain and road noise have been minimized thanks to the widespread use of sound-absorbing materials, including Thinsulate®, sealants, foams and silencer pads. The TNGA structure employs additional seals in its body panel gaps to insulate noise penetration and enhance air-sealing performance. As one example, the floor silencer pad is one large piece, instead of many smaller segments.
Comfort for All Aboard
The Corolla cabin provides an engaging cabin design that surrounds the driver while offering a spacious environment for all passengers. High-gloss materials are paired with matte elements - silver accents with Piano Black and available contrasting stitching - contributing to a premium look and feel.
Seating materials include standard cloth or, in higher grades, SofTex® trim. For 2023, choices include Black/Red (black as the main color with red highlights), Light Gray (light gray as the main color with dark gray highlights) and Macadamia (a warm, inviting cream color). Front seats in the SE and XSE grades feature shoulder supports evocative of a competition bucket seat, with overlapping solid and thick side bolsters to help comfortably grip occupants.
For storage, Corolla comes equipped with a console tray and front cupholder. The tray can hold small items, such as a smartphone or wallet. When the XSE is equipped with the JBL Premium Audio Plus Wireless Charger package, it houses the available Qi wireless device charging pad. Terraced cup holders adapt to various-sized beverage containers.
Assembled in the U.S.
Toyota Corolla Sedan has been and will continue to be assembled at Toyota Motor Manufacturing Mississippi (TMMMS), where there are 1,500 Toyota team members. Additionally, the latest Corolla family member, the first-ever Corolla Cross, is assembled at the new joint-venture manufacturing plant with Mazda in Huntsville, Alabama. The new manufacturing facility represents a combined investment of $1.6 billion by the two companies. There are 4,000 team members and an annual assembly capacity of 300,000 vehicles. (Corolla Hybrid is assembled in the Takaoka plant in Japan.)
Upgraded Safety & Vehicle Technology
Toyota became an early leader in equipping its vehicles with safety systems featuring automatic emergency braking. For 2023, Toyota Safety Sense technology in Corolla evolves to version 3.0 and includes enhanced versions of the following:
The Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Cross-Traffic Alert system is an available option. In addition, the Corolla Sedan is available with Front and Rear Parking Assist with Automatic Braking. The latter provides a wider field of light and steers the low beams in the direction of the turn, based on steering angle and vehicle speed. New safety features include Proactive Driving Assist, Obstacle Anticipation Assist and Deceleration Assist.
The 2023 Corolla Sedan models feature eight standard airbags and Toyota's Star Safety System, which includes Enhanced Vehicle Stability Control, Traction Control, Electronic Brake-force Distribution, Brake Assist, Anti-lock Braking System and Smart Stop Technology. All Corolla models come equipped with a backup camera.
All 2023 Corolla and Corolla Hybrid models debut a new standard next-generation 8-inch Toyota Audio Multimedia system designed and engineered by Toyota's Texas-based Connected Technologies team. The multi-talented new system provides a wide range of enhanced connectivity and convenience features and is Over-the-Air (OTA) updatable.
Users can interact with the new system's design through intuitive touch and voice activation controls. With Drive Connect, Toyota's latest available Connected Service, users have access to Intelligent Assistant, Cloud Navigation and Destination Assist. Active Drive Connect trial or subscription required.
With Intelligent Assistant, speaking simple phrases like "Hey Toyota" awaken the system for voice activated commands to search for driving directions, find Points of Interest (POI), adjust audio controls, change the cabin temperature and more. Cloud Navigation is the available onboard navigation solution that utilizes the cloud to download the latest available map, traffic and routing information.
To ensure the most up-to-date search capabilities, POI search is provided by Google Points-of-Interest data. Destination Assist also gives access to 24/7 live agent assistance to locate your next destination.
The new Toyota Audio Multimedia system allows dual Bluetooth® phone connectivity, with support for standard wireless Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™ compatibility. An available Wi-Fi Connect subscription offers 4G connectivity for up to five devices, turning the car into an AT&T Hotspot, along with the ability for customers to link their separate Apple Music® and Amazon Music subscriptions to the vehicle with the new Integrated Streaming feature. This augments the already robust audio playback ability that includes HD Radio, USB data and a SiriusXM® Platinum Plan 3-month trial subscription.
For the Corolla SE and XSE grades, the audio experience goes to a higher level with the available JBL® Premium Audio system with 9 speakers, including an 800-watt amplifier and 10-in. subwoofer.
All Corolla models come with a host of Connected Services available on all grades, trial or subscription required. Safety Connect™, now with up to a 10-year trial subscription for 2023, includes an Emergency Assistance Button (SOS), 24/7 Enhanced Roadside Assistance, Automatic Collision Notification, Stolen Vehicle Locator and Collision Assistance. Service Connect, also with up to a 10-year trial subscription for 2023, offers drivers the capability of receiving Vehicle Health Reports, Maintenance Alerts and reminders. With the Toyota app, users can stay connected to their Toyota with the available Remote Connect service.
Standard Smart Key System with Push Button Start for SE and XSE works on the front doors and trunk and for remote keyless entry with lock, two-stage unlock, panic and trunk-release functions.
Limited Warranty and ToyotaCare
Toyota's 36-month/36,000 mile basic new-vehicle warranty applies to all components other than normal wear and maintenance items. Additional 60-month warranties cover the powertrain for 60,000 miles and corrosion with no mileage limitation. The Corolla Hatchback also comes standard with ToyotaCare, a no additional cost plan that covers normal factory-scheduled maintenance for two years or 25,000 miles, whichever comes first, and 24-hour roadside assistance for two years, unlimited mileage.