2016 Toyota Corolla S Plus review: A lid for every pot

For decades, the Toyota has satisfied everyone who ever used. Not hard to explain it by what the car brings too great. It is not difficult to drive, easy park, there is a good-looking appearance. 

This S Plus model is the highest trim you can get with a six-speed manual, and honestly, it’s worth it for the extra modicum of fun you might get. Andy calls the 1.8-liter snarly; I’d call it buzzy. Get anywhere near the top of the rev range and the four pleads for mercy. It’s not slow off the line, but once you’re up to speed, you’ll need a handful of downshifts to jump into the next lane. But it’s not annoyingly slow. The brakes are a little spongy, but the car still feels light. A few hard stomps had me confident if any emergency popped up. The clutch is nearly weightless, as is the throttle pedal. That would annoy me on a faster car, but with this, it sort of fits.

Photo: 2016 Toyota Corolla S Plus Photo 2

Toyota Corolla S plus

It’s not a bad-looking little runabout, either. I sort of like the new front end and the 17-inch wheel choice is good-looking, too. I’d ask for a little less wheel well space, if I had a genie, but at least it doesn’t look too tall like Corollas have in the past.

The cabin seems very spacious, and I like the accent colors on the seats and dashboard. There’s a ton of space in the trunk and the backseat fits me too, with another one of me in the front. I’m 5-feet-10, which is average, by the way.

The Corolla is well equipped at this price. You get the central touchscreen, sunroof, digital climate control, power seats and keyless entry, to name a few. The stereo system is fine, plenty loud for everyday driving.

Photo: 2016 Toyota Corolla S Plus Photo 9

Interior of Toyota Corolla S plus

We had the car for more than a week and I don’t think anyone filled it up with gas. That has to say something. Either we’re babying it or it gets really good gas mileage -- maybe both.

The Honda Civic is the pink elephant in the segment, and this Corolla probably isn’t up to that level yet. There are still some cheap-looking materials in the cabin. But Toyota sells a ton -- 363,000 or so this year. It sold about 30,000 less last year. It did beat the Civic, though, in 2015 -- 355,000 of those were sold.

The customers who buy this car will surely be happy, but they’d also be happy with the Civic, or a Ford Focus for that matter, both of which I think are more fun to drive. At any rate, get the stick shift, make sure to get the stick shift. 

Features

Interior Features

Front Seats: Height adjustable driver seat, Leatherette/cloth, Bucket front seats

Rear Seats: Split-folding rear seatback, Folding center armrest

Instrumentation: Clock, trip computer, compass, Tachometer, External temperature display

Convenience: Cruise control, Front and rear cupholders, Front and rear door pockets, Front seatback storage, Electric power steering, Tilt and telescopic steering wheel, Audio and cruise controls on steering wheel, Rear view camera 

Comfort: Interior air filtration, Climate control, Leather and simulated alloy steering wheel, Turn signal in mirrors, Dual vanity mirrors

In Car Entertainment: 6 total speakers, AM/FM stereo, Satellite radio satellite radio, Auxiliary audio input and USB with external media control, 3 Months of provided satellite radio service, USB connection

Telematics: Navigation with voice activation navigation system, Bluetooth wireless data link for hands-free phone, Real time traffic 

Exterior Features 

Roof and Glass: Variable intermittent wipers, Rear defogger, Power glass sunroof

Body: Rear spoiler

Tires and Wheels: Alloy wheels, 17 x 7.0 in. wheels, P215/45R17 tires, All season tires, Inside mounted spare tire, Temporary spare tire

Safety Features: 4-wheel ABS, Front and rear head airbags, Dual front side-mounted airbags,Child seat anchors, Emergency braking assist, Ventilated front disc / solid rear disc brakes, Rear door child safety locks, Daytime running lights, Engine immobilizer, Front fog/driving lights, LED headlamp, 2 front headrests, 3 rear headrests, Passenger airbag occupant sensing deactivation, Rear center 3-point belt, Turn signal mirrors, Stability control, Traction control, Rear height adjustable headrests, Tire pressure monitoring, First Aid Kit, Emergency Assistance Kit.

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