Passenger & boot space
How it copes with people and clutter
The important thing is you won’t struggle to fit – even if you’re really tall. The front seats slide back a long way on their runners and, although some rivals have a tad more head room, you’re unlikely to feel hemmed in. The interior is wide enough across to keep some space between you and your passenger, too.
What about storage? Well, the door pockets are on the small side, but you’ll find plenty of room elsewhere, thanks to a generous glovebox and various trays and cubbies dotted about. You also get the obligatory twin cupholders in the centre console.
Not great: that’s probably the best way to sum up rear space in the Corolla Touring Sports. While the Focus Estate and Octavia Estate are rather accommodating, the Corolla feels a little cramped for anyone over six feet tall sitting behind someone similar in the front.
Leg room is tight, and head room, although better than it is in the hatch thanks to a less sloped roof, isn't great, either. The footwells are pretty tight, too, with little space between the bottom of the front seats and the base of the rears so it’s awkward to get in and out. Things are even tighter for the middle passenger.
Seat folding and flexibility
The rear seats don’t recline or do anything else particularly clever, but nor do those in the Corolla Touring Sports’ rivals.
Still, they do fold with a 60/40 split. Operation – either by tugging levers next to the rear head restraints or by using the separate lever pulls located on either side of the boot wall – is straightforward.
As with the Corolla hatch, if you’re after a big boot, be careful which Touring Sports you buy; the luggage capacity you're granted depends on which engine you choose.
While the 1.2 and 1.8 Touring Sports can muster 598 litres of carrying capacity with the seats up, the 2.0-litre model cuts this to 581 litres. That's because its bigger engine doesn’t leave enough space for the battery under its bonnet, forcing it to lurk beneath the boot floor instead. As a result, neither hybrid version offers a height-adjustable boot floor, although the rear seats still lie flat when folded down.
For reference, the Golf Estate, Hyundai i30 Estate and Skoda Octavia Estate all offer quite a bit more room. However, if you want a hybrid estate car of this size, the Corolla Touring Sports really is in a class of one.