2017 Toyota Corolla iM new car reviews

We're back on the compact scene, this time with Toyota's Corolla iM. It's just about the same size as a Honda Fit or a Kia Rio. It claims 35 mpg on the highway and 27 around town. The starting price is appealing for those looking for an affordable new ride: $18,750. Our test car came dressed in a loud shade of yellow (yes, the car in the photo above is blue, not yellow) and a manual transmission, too.

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Marjorie Suddard Marjorie Suddard
General Manager

Toyota’s closing of the Scion brand means that last year’s Scion iM becomes this year’s Toyota iM. Under the new badge is a familiar Scion formula: A good-enough car that packs an above-average amount of standard features into an attractive price. It adds up to a driving experience that’s good enough, too—the iM is light and tossable, though underpowered, and the cabin amenities make it plenty comfortable. I might not choose the safety-yellow paint for a long-term relationship, but honestly, it was fun for a week. Too bad the car lacked the chops to fulfill the promise of that Lambo-ish color.

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Duke
Duke MegaDork
6/13/17 1:43 p.m.

Based on the "holy crap they're giving 5-doors away" thread a few months ago, I test drove one of those with DD#1's boyfriend as a replacement for his crapbox Neon.

The iM was awful. Unattractive styling, cheap uncomfortable interior, pitiful engine, terrible CVT, and truly mediocre ride and handling. Seriously, the drivetrain sounded like the leaf blower from a few yards over and had the approximate power delivery of a Sleek Streek.

It was the same price as, or maybe a little more expensive than, the Cruze 5-door we drove the same day. The Cruze was a much better car in all ways.

NickD
NickD SuperDork
6/13/17 1:49 p.m.

If only the stock iM was half as awesome as Fredric Aasbo's RWD, 1000hp 2AR Corolla iM

sesto elemento
sesto elemento SuperDork
6/13/17 6:01 p.m.

Too bad they dont make the new 80s gti out of these. Seriously they should be going after the driver's momentum hot harch market with this. That would be awesome.

EvanR
EvanR SuperDork
6/13/17 6:19 p.m.
Duke wrote: The Cruze was a *much* better car in all ways.

Unless you ever plan to sell it. My '13 Sonic with 50k on it sells for about 30% of MSRP. Either buy Chevrolets after they depreciate, or plan on keeping it for 10+ years if you buy new.

mndsm
mndsm MegaDork
6/13/17 6:27 p.m.

See, I think these are super cool

irish44j
irish44j UltimaDork
6/13/17 8:05 p.m.
Ed Higginbotham wrote: We're back on the compact scene, this time with Toyota's Corolla iM. It's just about the same size as a Honda Fit or a Kia Rio. It claims 35 mpg on the highway and 27 around town. The starting price is appealing for those looking for an affordable new ride: $18,750. Our test car came dressed in a loud shade of yellow (yes, the car in the photo above is blue, not yellow) and a manual transmission, too.

for such a small car, 35 mpg on the highway and 27 around town seems awfully unimpressive. In context that's only about 6-7mpg better in both categories than my 300+hp WRX, and certainly less than my parents get in their Hyundai Sonata 2.0 (non hybrid), a much larger car. Seems to me that small cars like this should be into the 40s on the highway, or at very least into the low-mid 30s in city, but maybe my perception is off...I don't often look closely at econo-compacts.

MugenReplica
MugenReplica New Reader
6/13/17 8:31 p.m.

I'll keep my craptastic iQ and if I need a 5 door, buy a non-Mexican built 2017 Honda Fit for similar price to the iM.

On a side note, the 2ZR-FE is far superior to the L15b1 Fit block in terms of torque alone, not to mention Dual VVT-i.

Duke
Duke MegaDork
6/14/17 6:27 a.m.
EvanR wrote:
Duke wrote: The Cruze was a *much* better car in all ways.

Unless you ever plan to sell it. My '13 Sonic with 50k on it sells for about 30% of MSRP. Either buy Chevrolets after they depreciate, or plan on keeping it for 10+ years if you buy new.

No offense, but the Sonic is a much different car than the Cruze, in a segment that doesn't have great resale value across the board.

Besides, we do keep cars forever.

z31maniac
z31maniac MegaDork
6/14/17 6:54 a.m.
irish44j wrote:
Ed Higginbotham wrote: We're back on the compact scene, this time with Toyota's Corolla iM. It's just about the same size as a Honda Fit or a Kia Rio. It claims 35 mpg on the highway and 27 around town. The starting price is appealing for those looking for an affordable new ride: $18,750. Our test car came dressed in a loud shade of yellow (yes, the car in the photo above is blue, not yellow) and a manual transmission, too.

for such a small car, 35 mpg on the highway and 27 around town seems awfully unimpressive. In context that's only about 6-7mpg better in both categories than my 300+hp WRX, and certainly less than my parents get in their Hyundai Sonata 2.0 (non hybrid), a much larger car. Seems to me that small cars like this should be into the 40s on the highway, or at very least into the low-mid 30s in city, but maybe my perception is off...I don't often look closely at econo-compacts.

Yep.

Smaller than a Mazda 3, approx 15% worse mpg on the highway.

Duke
Duke MegaDork
6/14/17 7:26 a.m.
MugenReplica wrote: On a side note, the 2ZR-FE is far superior to the L15b1 Fit block in terms of torque alone, not to mention Dual VVT-i.

Really? Maybe the elastic-fantastic CVT sucks all the vital force out of it, then. Because the iM we drove made a lot of sound and fury, but not much in the way of motivation.

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