2010 Toyota Corolla LE
2010 Toyota Corolla LE
2010 Toyota Corolla LE
2010 Toyota Corolla LE. Click image to enlarge

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Inside Story is a review of interior comfort features, cabin controls, storage options, trunk space and under-hood accessibility based on a seven-day evaluation. For driving impressions, please see our Test Drives section.

Review and photos by Michael Clark

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2010 Toyota Corolla

We’ve heard of Fanfare for the Common Man, but what about luxury?

When the ultra-dependable Toyota Corolla shows up to the game with automatic climate control, push button start, and simulated Bird’s Eye Maple trim, most reasonable folks, including me, are going to cramp an eyebrow muscle or three. Yet, at an as-tested MSRP of $20,865, the value seems undeniable. Let’s look inside, and see what you get:

The Cockpit/Centre Stack

The three-spoke tilt/telescoping wheel seems rather spartan, with the only additional controls being the corporate cruise control stalk at the four o’clocl position. There is no specific notation for auto headlamps on the turn signal stalk, though they behave as such in the off position.

2010 Toyota Corolla LE
2010 Toyota Corolla LE
2010 Toyota Corolla LE. Click image to enlarge

The vehicle stability control/traction control switch is now standard fare for the LE trim level, housed in the switch bank to the left of the driver. This is also home to the power mirror control toggle. The exterior mirrors are heated, as well as of the breakaway style. The single CD head unit gets an XM satellite radio pre-wire, and an audio auxiliary input at the base of the stack. The auto climate control system is a single zone set-up.

The gated four-speed automatic is without a manual shift mode. The Smart Key System provides familiar door lock tabs on the front door handles. Upon approach, cabin lighting illuminates. The dash-mount push button start avoids the use of an unsightly steering column key plug. The driver’s door pod houses an auto-down window lift for the driver. What appears to be the clock display, at the base of the Optitron tachometer sweep, is actually the driver information display, including such niceties as exterior temperature, distance to empty, and fuel economy metering.

Cubbies!
2010 Toyota Corolla LE
2010 Toyota Corolla LE. Click image to enlarge

There are two non-locking gloveboxes, neither connected to the air conditioning/heating system. Much smaller open cubbies ride the sides of the centre stack, with a bag hook on the passenger side unit. A drop-down tray is found below the VSC/TRAC switch. While both front and rear door panels house bottle-specific portals, it is the rear doors that receive the more expansive storage. Front seatbacks are pocket-equipped, with an ingenious twin cupholder expanding outwards from the rear of the console. No rear centre armrest is provided.

The first 12-volt DC powerpoint is located behind a flip-up door, below the HVAC switch bank. It is within close proximity to the shifter, and could interfere with driver operation, depending on the size and placement of a charger unit. The centre console armrest can slide forward for comfort. An upper compartment starts off the inner storage, with a card clip on the underside of the lid. Below this is an anti-rattle bed, with the second 12-volt DC powerpoint. No coin-specific holders were harmed, or found during this review. The dual cupholder uses a spring-loaded single tab cincher system, which can be removed.

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