Toyota India would launch the Corolla Altis diesel in India on the 21st of July. The Corolla has a loyal fan base which swears by the comfort and reliability of the car, but the lack of a diesel option doesn’t bide well for low running costs. The introduction of a diesel engine is perceived to bring down the running costs of the car substantially. A diesel option will also arm the Corolla to fend off the competition presented by the likes of the Cruze and the Laura with potent diesel mills under their bonnets.
While a diesel option usually does a lot of good to the sales of a car, we are not very sure whether it would happen in the case of the Corolla. The 1.4-litre turbo diesel with variable geometry intake D-4D engine, to be introduced on the Corolla isn’t really the right powerplant to propel such a huge car. Producing a sedate 90PS with about 190 Nm of turning force, this engine is sure to feel sluggish on the move. Our inside sources have told us that the engine actually feels wheezy and powerless, and takes much more than 16 seconds to propel this car from 0 to 100km/h. That’s an even slower sprint timing than the most basic cars on the market like the Maruti A-Star and the hyundai i10. We just hope the car is a tad quicker than those reports, or it won’t have much of a chance against it sophisticated and potent counterparts.
The in-gear acceleration and smoothness of the new engine is reported to be good, however, the best virtue of the new engine is said to be its fuel efficiency. The new engine is capable of delivering more than 20kmpl. We still think that for a car that retails for more than 12lakh rupees for the base variant, fuel efficiency wont be only concern of the buyer, and he would definitely want some poke from the engine under the bonnet of his car. We wish Toyota Kirloskar India all the best and hope the new engine option actually pops a surprise on us.