2024 Toyota Corolla Cross Hybrid - Just like the RAV4 only a little smaller


Way back in the mid-1990s Toyota introduced a nice, compact SUV, the RAV4. It was just shy of 162" long. Over the years the RAV4 has grown to where it is now 180.9" long. They grow up so fast. 

Toyota must have realized that the RAV4 was a little too big for some folks so they came out with the Corolla Cross that is a little bit smaller. It is 176.8" long, still bigger than the original RAV4. I'll take the reduction in size.

Why do I, and many others in my age group like smaller SUVs? There are currently 62-million of us over 65, and it is estimated that about 40% have a mobility problem. It is much more difficult for us geezers to climb up into a big SUV or truck, or conversely to get out of way too many sedans. Add in that we don't have families we need to cart around (other than a grandchild now and then), and the attraction of easy access vehicles becomes apparent. 

The Corolla Cross is available either as a hybrid or gas; the test Corolla Cross was a hybrid. In my opinion hybrids are a better option than pure electric. You can get terrific fuel economy (better around town) but you never have to plug-in. The 2024 Corolla Cross Hybrid is rated at 45-mpg city, and 38 on the highway. Darn good for an AWD vehicle.

Although the Corolla Cross Hybrid is not a rocket-ship it won't embarrass you either. Zero to 60 mph happens in a quick 7.3 seconds. The gas engine puts out 150 hp., and combined with the electric motors there is a total of 196 hp. The only transmission offered is a CVT. 

There is 21.5 cubic feet of storage behind the rear seat, more than enough for all a couple should need for a week's vacation. If more, or longer space is needed just fold down the rear seats and you get up to 61.8 cubic feet.

Generally I liked the controls but, and there's almost always a but, the sound system knob (you can see it on the lower left of the screen) is small and blends into the background. Most of the test cars have SiriusXM (thank you) but I don't know why it is so hard to punch in a specific channel number. This isn't restricted to Toyota. The old K.I.S.S. formula should always apply.

As you might expect, you cannot tow a huge trailer with the Corolla Cross Hybrid but you can tow up to 1,500 lbs.

How did I like the Corolla Cross Hybrid? Just fine. No it's not a sports car but it handles well. The sight lines from the driver's seat were excellent. The ride was good, firm but comfortable. The seats were comfy, there was ample room in the rear seat for two full-size adults, or three kiddos. There is all the expected tech but it wasn't intrusive. 

I think there is a large market for SUVs this size, or there should be. Not everyone needs a huge vehicle, and with the price of gas, even though it has come down a bit, the economy of a hybrid should be appealing.

Given the prices of new cars today I think the 2024 Toyota Corolla Cross Hybrid is a good deal. The base S model starts at $28,220, while the top of the line XSE starts at $31,405. The Nightshade version (next to the top) tested starts at $30,465. The test vehicle had $2,680 in options that included a really nice JBL premium sound system.

This photo is courtesy of Toyota


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