2020 Toyota Corolla Build – Daily Driver Challenge – Part 1 of 4

Welcome to our 2020 Toyota
Corolla four-part miniseries. (upbeat music) (car engine revving) (soft rock music) If you guys are
regulars on our channel, you know we primarily build
cars that are designed for performance, modify
them, take them to the track, but in the process you might say we compromise their comfort, their usability
as daily drivers, and so with the 2020 Corolla, we really wanted to take
what is already a very fun and affordable
fuel efficient car, and add performance
without overly compromising it as a true daily driver. As a car you could
commute to work in, go get the groceries in, take
your family to the park in and do all those
things that you do with a four-door hatchback, but also be able to
take it to the track, take it to an autocross
and actually have fun, go faster than you might in
a fully stock configuration. So that’s really our
goal with the car. So I think for today’s episode, Pete and I are
going to jump in it, go for a rip around
the race track and really get a sense of
what this car is all about from a performance standpoint. And decide what sort
of modifications we might want to do to it. – So Dave, I actually had
a chance to drive this car on a press launch and I was
very pleasantly surprised about the sporty nature of it. – Yeah, yeah, I remember that. – And it really is a
true daily driver car, was not meant to be
used on the race track, but to be used commuting around and for fun-spirited driving. – Yeah. – That’s kind of
its intent goal, but overall it surprised me
in terms of the crisp shifter and the pep of the motor. So I’d say it’s a vehicle that
you can certainly take out on the race track, but
we’re going to find out whether we can improve
on that, right? – Yeah, yeah, and if I’m honest, I would say I was a
little bit skeptical about how much sportiness
they injected into this car, even though I was getting it from a person I consider
a reliable source. – Yeah. – But having spent the last
couple of weeks driving this, I’ve put like 1,200
kilometers on it now, including turning on the wipers. And I’ve got to say,
I agree with you, it’s a lot of fun
to rip around in. It’s got a nice power
band, you have to be in the right gear for it
to accelerate strongly, but when you are
in the right gear, it really does pull strong. – Yeah, it doesn’t have
that lack of power, right? When you need it. – Mm-hmm. And more than that it’s tuned. The suspension is tuned in a way where it really does
feel very responsive. It’s got a lot of tire on it, it’s got a big 225/40/18
ultra-high performance all-season tire from Dunlop.
– Yeah. – Which tells you they
were pretty serious about making this car more
fun than Corollas of the past. So I think it’s really
promising as a car that you can use
both as a comfortable and practical daily driver,
but still have a ton of fun in. I wouldn’t call it a hot hatch, but we could certainly
call it a warm hatch, and I think we’re going
to try to warm it up a little bit more with
a little modification. But right now we’re just
going to give it a shake down to see how it feels
around the race track. I’m just sort of slowly
adding some pace here, and so far so good. – [Pete] It’s really good, yeah. – [Dave] It does have
body roll as you’d expect with a car that has to be
able to go over potholes and railroad tracks
and all that stuff, but it’s not excessive, is it? – [Pete] No, it’s got good
composure by the looks of it. – [Dave] And it’s a
little, we got a little bit of understeer
there, but not bad. – [Pete] And how are the brakes? – [Dave] The brakes are good. I really like the
shifter feel actually. I think that’s, to me, one
of the standout features is it’s got a really
slick shifter. – For sure it does. – But it’s very light
action too, so you can shift with two fingers if you
want to on the street, but it’s still a very precise, the steering is
nice and light too. It’s a very
comfortable streetcar. It really, you know
it’s been designed to be a practical daily driver, but somehow it’s
still tuned in a way where it is really
engaging to drive. – [Pete] Yeah, and it’s
also affordable, right? – Yeah, yeah, I think
the base model starts around $21,000 Canadian, which would be well
under $20,000 in America. Ours is an XSE package. – And it comes in
this Flame Blue color. – Flame Blue, yeah, I know I
love that they inflamed blue, and I’m revving her
up to almost 7K here. We’re starting to get
some aggression into it. The brakes feel good so far. Typically with a car
in this category, you’d get some brake
fade pretty quickly because they’re not equipped with a very
aggressive brake pad. – Yeah.
– But so far so good. – [Pete] It’s feeling real
good, and it’s got pep man. – [Dave] Yeah, yeah,
the motor’s rated to I think 168 horsepower, it’s a two-liter
direct injection unit. And around town, like I said, as long as you have
it in the right gear, it is zippy, it’s
properly quick. I’d go down to second gear, speaking about being
in the right gear. – [Pete] Feels like the
tires are fighting us though. – Yeah, for sure. We’re asking a lot
of it around here, and I’m just sort
of figuring out what gear I need to be in, but. – And it is an
all-season tire, right? 340 tread wear, right Dave? – Yeah, which is aggressive
for an all-season tire. – Yeah. – But we can certainly do
better in the tire grip department I would say. And I’m going to suggest
we probably upgrade the brake pads and
the brake fluid. – I think so. – I mean that’s just kind
of the standard thing to do in any car that you’re
going to drive hard, so. – And body roll-wise,
man oh man, I feel like this thing’s
going to need some coilovers. – Yeah, that seems like
a logical next step too. I mean, I don’t
think we want to go with a crazy aggressive setup, we still want it to
be comfortable on
the street, right? – Right, and I think we’ll
be able to find that. I know there’s not
a tremendous amount of aftermarket support
yet for this car, but there are parts coming out and they’re mainly
focused for the streets, so I think we’ll be able
to find that good medium. – A good balance there? – Because after all, we
still want to make sure that this car is a
daily driver, right? – Yeah. – [Pete] I do like the
interior quite a bit. I think it’s very functional,
not overly complicated, which I find a lot
of cars are going to. – [Dave] Yeah, yeah. – [Pete] It’s certainly like, I don’t want to call it Spartan, but it’s got that
perfect amount of mix. A good quality interior–
– Yeah. – Not too busy. My one little gripe with
it is the parking brake, it’s an electronic– – Electronic parking brakes,
everyone’s going to those now. – We don’t drive enough new
cars where I don’t think I’m used to it.
– That’s right, yeah. – It kind of turns on when
you come to a stop or– – When you turn the car off,
it automatically puts it on and you have to
deliberately take it off with your foot on both
the clutch and the brake. – Yeah the clutch and the brake. – So it takes a little
getting used to, but I think once
you figure it out, it’s not too big of a deal. And, I mean it is nice that
it goes on automatically because you’re never
going to accidentally coast backwards into
something, so I get it but– – I miss the days man. – Yeah. – The parking brakes are
gone, so that’s a thing of the past.
– Yeah. – And let’s talk
about the styling. I’m kind of blown away. The whole Toyota design
philosophy has changed so much, and I personally love
the way this car looks. – [Dave] Oh, I think
it looks awesome. – [Pete] I don’t think
we’re gonna be touching too much on the exterior,
but maybe a couple of things. I think there’s an optional
spoiler that this comes with. – There is, yeah.
– You should get it because it makes this car
really look aggressive. – Yeah, I like it too. – And there’s a cool
lip kit on the market– – Okay.
– Which I think we’ll add. I mean lowering this
car, putting a proper set of wheels on it will certainly– – Yeah.
– Enhance the looks. – Really change the look a lot. Yeah, I think
that’s a great idea. – Again, we don’t
want to go crazy low. We don’t want to go
crazy aggressive. We just want to make
sure that we can upgrade the performance of this vehicle while still keeping
it really civil. – Yeah, yeah. – That’s going to be the end
goal of this project here. – Now that Pete and I have
given you a quick driving impression of what the
Corolla is like out on the race track, it’s
time to set a proper hot lap and for that I am
going to record data with this Racepak Vantage
CL2 data acquisition and lap timing system. As you can see it is just
a tiny little box here, it’s actually a GPS unit in
here, a 20 Hertz chip set, so it records my position
20 times a second. It’s very accurate and that
will allow us to determine our lap times as well
as give us GPS data for acceleration forces, both
lateral and longitudinal. All of which does not
record on this unit, this just plugs into our
OBD2 port by the way, which also gives us
access to all the data that this car has in its ECU. And this will work in any
car that’s 2008 or newer. And it’ll send that data
from here via Bluetooth to my cell phone. So I’ll put my iPhone
up here on the dash and I’ll be able to see it
functioning as a lap timer. But all the data that this
records off of the OBD2 port, as well as off of
its GPS chip set will be recorded to my phone. And also alternatively,
if you sign up with one of Ray’s
PAX cloud accounts, it’ll also go to the
cloud where other people can access that data. So if Peter wants to watch
how I’m doing on the track while it’s live, you can
actually jump on his phone and see the data live or he
can review it after the fact. So, that’s a quick rundown of our Racepak
Vantage CL2 system. Going to install it now, which
takes all of about 30 seconds and then it’s time to
go rip some hot laps. All right ladies and gentlemen, I am holding the tract
control button off for five seconds to
see what happens. All right, it looks like
everything’s turned off there. Can see on this fancy digital
dash it says VSC turned off, stability control turned off,
tract control turned off. It is all off. It’s always a good sign that
a car will let you do that. Means the engineers were
thinking about people like you and me actually driving
it with some aggression. So, here we go out onto the friendly confines of Toronto Motor Sports Park’s
11-turn road course here. It is a nice flat
safe road course where you really can’t
do any harm to your car. It’s a great place to come
and learn how to drive your car at a race track and
learn the etiquette of it, and oh, you can see our
Racepak Vantage CL1 or sorry, CL2 system is fired up here. That’s just 16 seconds to
cross the start/finish line, which is on the
straightaway here. So I’ve just started
my first timed lap, although I’m going
to treat this just as a basic warmup lap here. Cruise around to the front and
then I’ll really let her rip. All right, here we come
around to the last few corners here at TMP and I am
just putting a little bit of heat in the tires and brakes before we start our
first hot lap here. And really my goal is just
to get a good clean lap time in and a representative lap
time for what this car can do in completely stock form. And from there we’ll go
and start tuning it up. So, last two corners here,
down shift into second gear, so I get a good launch
on to the front straight. I must say the pedal
spacing is quite nice for heel-and-toe downshifts. Got to just get on the gas nice and early here onto the
front straight and off we go. Shifting at 7,000 RPM,
got a couple of cars up in front of us here, which
hopefully won’t interfere with my attack on
time too hard here. All right, hard onto the
brakes down at turn one, chuck into turn one here,
power out of the corner, let’s see what we got. Oh, I’m hard on the
rev limiter there, I got to shift a
little earlier there, maybe I need third
gear as we turn one. It doesn’t have a
limited slip differential which I could definitely
feel coming out of the corners if I get on
the throttle too aggressively. It does a little bit
of a one-wheel peel, but you can definitely control that just by using your
right foot appropriately. Not going full mash
on the throttle. You’ve got to kind of
squeeze the throttle on to deliver that
power more smoothly. Getting the point by
from the Miata here, look at that everybody, Corolla
just got its first kill. I love it. Back down into second gear here and we’ve got a little
bit of understeer here, but it’s not bad,
very manageable. I think we can fix that a
little bit with some coilovers, but it is still a ton of
fun to drive and stock form. And the nice thing about
the stock suspension is that you can use the curves
that are upsetting the car too much, so I get a little
aggressive with it if I want to. (engine revving) (tires screeching) Through the S’s here
and it really is hanging in really well. These tires are taking a beating and they’re not
complaining too much. Little bit of rough
pavement there in turn six. But the car soaks it up well. And on the front straight
for our last hot lap. Let’s see how we do. Come on, Corolla. Come on, baby. All right guys, that is
it for my three hot laps in the Corolla, and I got
to say I had a lot of fun and the lap times
were pretty decent. I did a best lap
time of a 133.19 and the other two hot laps
were very close to that. I think I did a 33.4 and a
33.3 or something like that. So, I did praise the car on
its first and second laps for how strong the brakes
were hanging in there because they’re
really not designed for this kind of punishment. But then on the third
lap the pedal did start to get longer and softer. So, we know that
these brakes are good for two hot laps around here but not so much for three. So that’s definitely something we’re going to want to address. A couple of interesting metrics that we’ll look at
now when the car is 100% stock to compare it
to after we’ve modified it, is our top speed up
the front straightaway. So if I scroll over here to the
top of the speed graph here, I can see I hit 148.1
kilometers per hour. And then if I look at
peak G’s, it looks like I hit peak G’s in the very
last corner of 0.98 G’s. So I’m pretty sure
we’re going to beat both of those numbers after
we do some upgrades on the car but that’s
a good baseline. So, I think maybe it’s
time that we pack up our stuff before we drive
home and talk a little bit more about how the car
drives on the street. – Well now that the
track portion is done, we are cruising home
and in more comfort than we’re usually used to. – Yeah, that’s right. It is an awfully
nice ride quality. It’s also got a
radar cruise control, so it’s like adaptive cruise. It’ll match the speed of
the car in front of you. It’s got a lot of tech done,
it’s got Toyota’s Safety Sense. So again, if it suspects
you’re in danger, it’ll do what it can
to apply the brakes and even do a little steering
with the brake application. – Right, got you. – It’s got a whole bunch of– – So a bunch of
safety stuff too. – Yeah, yeah, it’s a
lot of technology packed into modern cars that we’re
not that used to, are we? – No, and what I really
like is that huge screen or I think it’s like
seven inches, right DP? – Oh, the main gage?
– The display gate, yeah. – [Dave] Yeah, it’s a
seven-inch TFT screen, which you can scroll
through on with the buttons on the left there, it’ll– – [Pete] Gives you,
there’s my lane departure, there’s a whole bunch
of stuff, audio– – Yeah, fuel economy.
– Trip, yeah and then– – [Dave] You have the settings. – [Pete] The vehicle sensor
set up so, it’s pretty neat. I like that. – And as far as fuel
efficiency goes, I’ve put, what, almost 1,300, or over
1,300 kilometers on it now. – Yeah. – And prior to the track
test we were averaging 6.8 liters per 100 kilometers. – [Pete] Yeah. – Which, that’s an
average number for
both highway and city. And that’s better than the
numbers they advertised. They advertised, with
the manual gearbox, they average 7.5, and I hit 6.8, and I wasn’t like
babying it by any means. So, impressive fuel efficiency. – And look, we’re still
under eight liters per 100 kilometers
after the race. – Yeah, we’re at their
advertised average with a bunch of
laps at the track. – Full thrashing, yeah. – It’s pretty
impressive overall. And I don’t know how you
feel about these central dash big infotainment
units these days, all the manufacturers
are using them. I mean, it does give
you a lot of information at your fingertips, but
it’s also a big thing here in the middle of the dash.
– Yeah, I agree. – I’m not that used to it
yet I guess, I’m accustomed– – It is very–
– Built in down here. – It is jarring to
a certain extent, but you get a huge screen,
which is what I think a lot of people want. – Yeah.
– So. – And you can access
all of your audio via Bluetooth with
Apple CarPlay. – Yeah.
– Or Android. What’s the Android
one called again? I forget, whatever
you Android guys use, it’s compatible
with that too, so… – Well DP, let’s see what
this thing’s got for power. – [Dave] Yeah. – [Pete] I’m going to
pass this smart car. – Passing the smart car.
– And as you can see, could get up and go for
the city driving there. – Yeah.
– And I pass very easily. – It surprises me how
willing it is to accelerate when you’re in the right gear. It’s really good
around town that way and even accelerating
on to the highway, as long as you’re not
in too high a gear, it really merges very nicely. And I think we’re going to call
this one a wrap, aren’t we? – I think so, yeah. – Yeah, we’ve given this
thing a pretty good shakedown for a first try and stay
tuned for the next episode where we’re going to unleash
all those modifications. Both those all up in– – A lot of good stuff,
it’s going to be awesome. – Yeah, it’s going to be great. One big party of
wrenching and then back to the race track
for more of this. And we are coming up on a
Jeep Cherokee on a race track, you don’t see that every day. Kill number two, everybody. We are killing it out here.

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100 thoughts on “2020 Toyota Corolla Build – Daily Driver Challenge – Part 1 of 4

  1. Im so keen to see this build come together. I've been considering one of these myself, but the lack of aftermarket options at the moment has me hesitant to pull the trigger on the purchase. Still got that modding in the blood.

  2. Springs/struts, Large rear sway bar, bolt ons/tune, 17×9's with 255 200 treadwear tires, and brake pads/fluid. Probably drop a good 5 seconds.

  3. First mod. Remove fake exhaust tips and install real ones. I swear I would have bought this car if it wasn't for those damn tips. They bug me more than they should.

  4. i’m a huge fan of how the new corolla looks. looking forward to see what you guys to do this to make the performance match the looks

  5. Strongly considered one of these, but my old Fit is still running like a champ, and I want to focus my money on my project now. Before the Pickup came along, this was going to be my replacement for the Fit, though. Same colour and spec, actually.

  6. Super Street made a niiice corolla hatch in red. RSR coilovers plus rims, some front and side skirts. Looks so cleeeeean and sporty once it's slightly lowered. 👌

  7. hey, love your channel but, if your going to to tune a car with autocross in mind you do need to target a class beforehand.

  8. also been waiting to see these being driven hard. started seeing them on the street this year and they honestly look like really nice packages

  9. 2jRacing makes parts for this car. Am interested in seeing how this build goes and seeing what one of these is truly capable of. Should be fun lil series.

  10. Option wing is actually awesome. We fitted one in the dealership I work at in the blue. They are such cool looking cars for what they are

  11. Nice build! I'd love to see more unconventional cars on the track, because I have one(Q50 AWD with VR30DDTT). No one tracks new cars, let alone modify

  12. Hmm is this a sponsored series? Gives that paid advertised vibe when it sort of sounds like a checkbox of items Toyota requires mentioning.

    You guys seem a bit reserved in this episode!

  13. I have one And I’m kinda disappointed but I came from driving hot hatches but as a everyday daily driver it’s great but aggressive driving it’s a corolla still…(2019 xse hatch manual)

  14. Big rear anti-roll bar, pads/fluid, front camber plates, Koni yellows, light weight exhaust & wheels/tires. Springs will make the car ride like crap on the street.

  15. Hi fella's, my first new car was a 79 Toyota Corolla two door, I think it was a 1.6 litre. I had a sunroof installed and a kick'in cassette stereo, six speakers and removed the stock wheels and installed four slotted wheels. But barely enough engine power too climb a six degree hill but the price was right for a young fella right out of college $ 5200.00 and change taxes in.🇨🇦

  16. Great start to the series! I had one of the new Corollas as a rental car recently. I was shocked at the level of equipment included in the lower spec model. Lane departure mitigation, radar cruise, Android Auto, and lots of other stuff thrown in for a really low price. The rental car was a CVT which robbed some of the fun, but the car handled sportily and was screwed together surprisingly well. It will be interesting to see where you end up on the mods to keep it a comfortable daily but extract a bit more punch from this "warm hatch".

  17. Tires and a rear sway bar is really all you need on daily cars like these and not sacrifice much of the comfort and daily-ability.

  18. This is going to be awesome. We just got this exact same car. Color, manual, and trim level. Not sure if we are going to be doing anything to it. Maybe you guys will change my mind. Really excited to watch the magic happen!

  19. I feel like this thing has zero aftermarket. Kind of wish you guys went with the new Civic Si even if that's a more obvious choice. Looking forward to what you end up doing

  20. This is one of the few cars like this that I have actually lusted-after, in a long time (*besides the KIA Forte GT, which….you can get a dual-clutch trans. in). The local stealership currently has a loaded-out 5-door XSE in the Black Sand Pearl color (with the lil' spoiler that was mentioned), and it's to die for.

    I have yet to see any reviewer not like this car.

    Gotta' get some better sounds coming from that engine, though!

  21. I almost bought one of these – there's a lot to like about it, but I ultimately ended up going with a 2020 Veloster. They both have an excellent suspension setup, but the veloster was more practical in terms of space. This still looks like an awesome car and I hope more enthusiasts realize how solid the corolla is for an affordable daily that's still fun.

  22. I'm one year into owning. Currently sitting on RSR Super Down springs, 0 toe alignment, SPC camber bolts up front, Progress rear sway bar, and TRD intake. It's such a good chassis for cornering, I can't keep it off the back roads. Not to mention it's has 2 faces. Driving it to work/school/running around it is civil, and doesn't encourage you to drive hard. But throw it into some corners, and it's a new beast. A proper tribute to the 86 Corolla.

  23. I have a 2019 XSE hatch, great little car. I hate the infotainment system and the lack of any storage space anywhere in the interior, but other than that it's a great comfortable DD with great MPG.

  24. i really want this car to be great but i really dont understand why they didnt put out a 4 cyl turbo version to compete with the GTI, focus ST, WRX, mazdaspeed 3, all the hot hatchs that are turbo

  25. Why wouldn't you use bigger sway bars to handle body roll instead of coil overs? I find that stiffer sprigs tend to upset the car over rough pavement especially front wheel drive cars, maybe that's just me.

  26. I daily one of these, and the parking brake will actually disengage automatically if you have your seatbelt on and put it in gear and begin to drive normally

  27. track battle — ('20) Toyota Corolla Hatch vs ('20) Mazda3 Hatch; manual in each. develop stage packages, put the same tire on them and go at it head-to-head, time attack style. Each car has great potential, but are held back by their intended daily driver status. These could be soooooo much more than a daily driver. Set the up for B-spec/Touring Car B racing (minus the roll cage) and go to town. Show ppl what these cars are capable of with (simple) bolt-on parts. You build; I'll watch.

  28. I’ve been waiting for somebody to exploit the potential of the Corolla Hatch. I always had a sneaky suspicion that the Corolla Hatch is hiding a beautiful platform to work on.

    I’m subscribing just to see that process lol.

  29. Youtube interrupted a Corolla video with a Dom Perignon commercial. I guess Google thinks the Corolla is the champagne of compact cars.

  30. I love these things. Still imho a little under powered for the price. At 26 for xse in my area I can get a lot better car but once they've dropped into the 15k range i'll surely pick one up. That or if the bump it up to be as premium as the Mazda 3 hatch. Also no SUNROOF BOO.

  31. off topic, but why does americans or canadians say 'about' and 'out' in british accent? at first you're speaking american english but then boom BRITISH ENGLISH

  32. Was at a Toyota dealer the other day. There's a TRD Camry now. I have to admit, it was kind of cool. I dont know how they drive though.

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