Explore the new 2019 Toyota Corolla: powertrains

This is the third of four blog articles focusing on important characteristics of the new 2019 Toyota Corolla Hatchback and Touring Sports models. We have already examined the model’s exterior and interior design and its comfort and technology features. This blog looks at the Corolla’s powertrains, and the final article will concentrate on the vehicle’s dynamic qualities.

2019 Toyota Corolla: hybrid electric powertrains

Greater awareness of environmental issues has helped prompt ever-stricter emissions regulations, particularly in large European cities. Toyota’s self-charging hybrid electric powertrains are a compelling proposition, offering exceptionally low emissions and high fuel efficiency, with the ability to cover up to half of the average European commuting journey on electric power alone.

The new Corolla is the first Toyota model to be offered with a choice of two self-charging hybrid powertrains: 120bhp 1.8-litre and 178bhp 2.0-litre hybrid systems. The range is completed with one conventional petrol engine – a 1.2-litre turbo unit.

Improved 1.8-litre hybrid system

The fourth-generation 1.8-litre hybrid electric system develops 120bhp and 142Nm of engine torque. Added power is provided by a 53kW electric motor-generator, which generates 163Nm of torque from zero revs.

The size and weight of the system have been reduced so that it can be installed on the new GA-C platform without compromising its output or quietness. The 1.8-litre engine benefits from a series of friction-reducing measures, a larger-capacity exhaust gas recirculation system and optimised heat management.

The hybrid drive system’s calibration has been further refined, and greater torque from the electric motor gives a more linear increase in revs under acceleration. Fuel efficiency is aided by the use of a lithium-ion hybrid battery.

New 2.0-litre hybrid system

“At the start of the project, we studied European customer profiles and the level of satisfaction with the 1.8-litre hybrid powertrain. While being very happy with the system’s fuel consumption, comfort, smoothness and reliability, it became apparent that we would not be able to satisfy the requirements of a significant group of potential customers.
People driving turbocharged powertrains above 1.4 litres were clearly asking for faster acceleration and response, and that’s why we took the decision to develop the 2.0-litre hybrid for the European market.”
Rembert Serrus, performance planning, Toyota Motor Europe

The new 2.0-litre hybrid electric system develops 178bhp and 192Nm of engine torque, with further torque provided by the electric motor-generator.

Exploiting the stability and handling benefits of the TNGA platform, it offers an energised drive with more power, a Sport drive mode and six-speed Sequential Shiftmatic transmission that can be operated using paddle shifters on the steering wheel.

The new system is unique in Corolla’s market segment, as no conventional powertrain offers the same combination of power and low emissions. Toyota has applied numerous measures to ensure the extra power is matched by fuel efficiency, reduced emissions and quieter running.

The fuel efficiency is supported by a number of additional factors: the engine’s high, 14.0:1 compression ratio, a high tumble flow generated by an efficient intake port design and long stroke, a new oil pump design, and a series of friction-reducing measures. Reducing the size of the transaxle, power control unit, motor-generator and hybrid battery further reduces fuel use.

The maximum speed when driving in all-electric mode has been increased to more than 70mph and system control has been changed so that the engine cannot be started without the accelerator pedal being operated, even before engine warm-up starts. Together these measures substantially improve fuel efficiency.

The catalytic converter has been located closer to the engine, and warm-up control after engine start has been optimised to give early, improved performance to reduce emissions.

Powertrain noise has been reduced to exceptionally low levels with the use of a balancer shaft, a change in the engine mount position and shape, structural changes to the transaxle, polishing of the gear teeth and the adoption of a positive/negative hysteris damper, lightweight timing chain and revisions to the water pump motor.

Both the new 2.0 Hybrid and 1.8 Hybrid derivatives of the new 2019 Toyota Corolla have towing capacities of 750kg.

Please note that UK specifications and details will be confirmed nearer to launch.


  1. I own a Corolla TS 2.0 Hybrid. According to the dealer, the consumption will decrease once the car has reached about 3,500 miles. Is this correct? Thanks

    1. Hi Gethin,

      Thanks for getting in touch. Hybrid electric vehicles are powered by two sources, the electrically powered motor and a petrol engine. The electric motor is supplied with electricity from the Hybrid battery, the hybrid battery is charged from the petrol engine via a generator, regenerative braking and deceleration.

      The Hybrid system is capable of adapting to different driving conditions, and controls the power coming from both sources to tell the car how to combine them for the greatest efficiency and performance.

      Therefore, there isn’t a maximum speed the electric motor needs to reach before switching to the petrol engine as these systems work in tandem. EV driving range does factor in speed but also wind resistance, terrain, weight, driving style and much more. Our hybrid models are capable in traveling well over 50 mph in EV mode.


  2. Hi, where is the catalytic converter situated on the Corolla 2.0 Touring Sport e.g. is it short coupled in the engine bay? Given the cat thefts that are taking place all over the UK how ‘resilient to attack’ is the new model (I am waiting to collect my new car after the lockdown eases and the dealer reopens, but not happy with what I’m reading regarding the level of thefts)

    1. Hi Les,

      Thanks for getting in touch. Criminals are using high-grade power saws to remove the catalyst, so in reality they are as easy to remove from any vehicle. The design is not so relevant.

      We have reduced the quantity of precious metals by up to 84% in catalytic converter design over time, and therefore older models seem more attractive to thieves.

      It’s also important to note that we currently produce Catlocs for the vehicles most at risk of theft, and this currently does not include the Corolla Touring Sport.


      1. I was looking at this answer and it seems to dodge the question. Is the 2l engine layout making catalytic converter theft more difficult? You suggest that the Touring Sport does not have a Catloc available but I purchased one for the previous model?

  3. Hi Fernando,

    Thanks for getting in touch. The use of a specific battery type is situation-dependent. Both nickel-metal hydride and lithium-ion batteries are available on the new Corolla adopted to each hybrid powertrain. We are using them based on the characteristics of each model, various customer needs and Toyota’s battery supply policy.

    While lithium-ion batteries have great potential for increasing energy density and reducing size and weight, nickel-metal hydride batteries have a proven track record of safety and stable operation.

    For greater improvement of the hybrid powertrains, we hope to promote the development of both battery types. We were able to realize dramatically higher performance and more compact size for both nickel-metal hydride and lithium-ion batteries, delivering identical performance levels.


  4. Why is the carplay update delayed if the models manufactured in September 2019 have already been installed?
    It is not a correct attitude towards existing customers.

    1. Hi Marius,

      Thanks for getting in touch. Due to the unprecedented disruption to our operations, the retrofit availability for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto has been pushed back to later this year. We’re sorry for any inconvenience and we’ll have more information soon.


  5. Hi !

    Why ? All car sales now have this function ? Why we that buy need to wait ? Where is support for as ?

  6. Hi
    Can you tell me if you can upgrade to CarPlay on the Corolla hybrid 2019. The satnav is terrible on this car. Car is good multimedia system next to useless.
    Kind regards

    1. Hi Peter,

      Thanks for getting in touch. Due to the unprecedented disruption to our operations, the retrofit availability for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto for MY19 Corolla has been pushed back to later this year. We expect the retrofit to be available from October, but due to the uncertainty ahead of us, this is subject to change. We’ll have more information soon.


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