For Corolla buyers looking to hatch up some great adventures, the iM is the perfect addition to the line-up. With its versatile hatchback, the new 2017 Corolla iM has plenty of room to handle gear for new excursions. Add in the iM’s fun-to-drive, high-style, high-content and high-MPG features, plus an outstanding price, and this new model is ready to roll out of showrooms.
The Corolla iM’s cabin is roomy, refined, versatile and high-tech equipped. The 1.8-liter DOHC Valvematic engine is eager to rev and very easy on gas. The chassis, with sophisticated double-wishbone rear suspension and standard 17-inch alloy wheels, smooths out urban bumps and tames adventurous curves. For more hands-on driving fun, a 6-speed stick shift is also available.
Safety and Sensibility
For 2017, the iM comes with standard Toyota Safety Sense™ C (TSS-C), as well as eight standard airbags, including a driver’s knee airbag and a front passenger seat cushion airbag. The TSS-C package features three proprietary active safety technologies and combines a camera and laser beam for enhanced performance and reliability. With Lane Departure Alert, Automatic High Beams and a Pre-Collision System, TSS-C can help prevent or mitigate collisions in a wide range of vehicle speeds.
Design: The Look of iM
The iM puts its best face forward with a hexagon lower grille, sharp-eyed headlights and side bezels with a honeycomb mesh pattern. That aerodynamic expression carries into the profile, which conveys dynamic movement from the lower front to the rear. A “swoosh line” rendered in steel.
Detailing on the Corolla iM belies the affordable pricing. The piano black grille treatment, standard sporty body aero kit, LED daytime running lights and taillights leave an unmistakable signature. Also, the color selection gives the design tremendous visual pop: Blizzard Pearl, Classic Silver Metallic, Black Sand Pearl, Barcelona Red Metallic, Spring Green Metallic and Electric Storm Blue.
It’s a Gas
Gas prices come down. Gas prices go back up. Compact car buyers like to avoid pain at the pump no matter what. The iM offers a sweet spot of performance and efficiency, and is rated by the EPA an estimated 28 city/36 hwy/31 combined for the CVTi-S model and 27 city/35 hwy/30 combined for the six-speed manual.
Then comes the fun side. The 137 horsepower 1.8-liter 4-cylinder engine uses Valvematic continuously variable valve timing (lift and phasing) technology to offer a broad torque curve, so the iM feels responsive in all situations.
For driving purists, the iM has a standard 6-speed stick shift that’s a slick shift, making for an engaging and active driving experience. Got hills? Both the manual and automatic iM models come standard with Hill Start Assist, which helps prevent roll-back when pulling away from a stop sign or traffic light on an incline.
The optional automatic is also perfectly suited to the 1.8-liter engine. It’s an intelligent Continuously Variable Transmission that’s been sport-tuned for driving pleasure. That’s why it’s called the CVTi-S. Not all CVTs operate as responsively as the CVTi-S in the iM. This one has both a Sport Mode as well as manual shifting capability with seven stepped shift points.
In Sport mode, the CVTi-S alters shift points and also provides a livelier feel through the electric power steering programming and accelerator responsiveness. G AI-SHIFT logic detects lateral G force during cornering and maintains engine speed by restricting unnecessary shift changes.
Using the console shifter, the driver can make fast, sequential shifts through the transmission’s seven predefined steps, accompanied by the familiar sense of positive shift engagement. The 4.2-inch TFT multi-information display within the instrument cluster displays M mode activity, including the “gear” position, and other vehicle information.
It’s Got the Moves
In the iM, instant gratification behind the wheel will turn to long-term love down the road. Driving enthusiasts know well the value of a high-strength body structure and a sophisticated four-wheel independent suspension. The iM checks those boxes by using ample high-strength steel and special reinforcements in the structure. And it goes further, making the rear suspension the double-wishbone type, a design offering the added benefit of not impinging on cargo room.
Add in standard 17-inch alloy wheels with fat 225/45R17 tires, and the iM delivers a tight, taut road feel and a compliant ride quality. The Electronic Power Steering (EPS) system makes low-speed maneuvering a breeze and provides good feel and less assistance at highway speeds. It also helps boost fuel efficiency because the system consumes power only when assist is needed.
Premium Interior without the Premium Price
Inside, it will be love at first seating in the standard bolstered front sport seats. They fit the body like a glove and also integrate a Whiplash Injury Lessening (WIL) structure for occupant protection.
High quality materials abound throughout the iM cabin, where the layered dashboard design combines sports car-inspired instrument panel styling with easy to reach, easy-to-use controls. Borrowing ideas from the luxury car realm, the Corolla iM keeps noise outside with an acoustic layer windshield, foam-type insulation and floor silencer sheets.
The iM’s premium feel on the road is matched by a lengthy roster of premium amenities which all come standard. Start with versatility, which comes from the 60/40 fold-down rear seats and standard cargo cover. A roomy glove box and console box are augmented by numerous front door pockets and storage bins throughout.
The iM naturally comes with high-grade standard multimedia system. The 6-speaker Pioneer sound system will play from a variety of sources, including iPods, of course, and other devices. It’s controlled through an easy to use 7-inch Display Audio unit that also includes standard HD Radio and Aha. That screen also provides the view for the standard rear backup camera.
Real leather wraps the steering wheel, an unexpected detail in this price class. The sporty wheel puts fingertip switches for audio, multi-info display and hands-free phone calls via Bluetooth. The 4.2-inch color TFT multi-information display between the main instrument gauges provides displays for the car’s features and other functions.
The Corolla iM keeps the value surprises coming. All cars in this segment come with air conditioning; the iM steps up a class with dual-zone automatic A/C control. And on cold mornings, the color-keyed heated power-folding exterior mirrors (yes, standard power-folding mirrors) clear up fog or frost in a hurry. Auto on/off headlamps are another convenience inherited from a higher segment.
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.
Standard Toyota Care is a complimentary plan covering normal factory-scheduled maintenance and 24-hour roadside assistance for two years or 25,000 miles, whichever comes first.
The Corolla iM MSRP is $18,750 for the six-speed manual, an increase of $290, or 1.6 percent and $19,490 for the CVTi-S Automatic with Sport Sequential Shiftmatic Mode, reflecting an increase of $290, or 1.5 percent.