Speed Dating: the 50 MPG 2016 Toyota Corolla S

2016 Toyota Corolla 50 MPG

The last time I test drove a Toyota Corolla it was a then-new 2014 Corolla that gave me more than 51 MPG on one of my trips, and averaged nearly 39 MPG throughout my test drive. It was a phenomenal performance, and one that had its doubters. After a while, I convinced myself that, yeah, it must have been some kind of crazy fluke. So, when I got my hands on a 2016 Toyota Corolla S Premium earlier this month, I didn’t really expect that the car was going to blow away its 32 MPG combined EPA rating.

To say, then, that I was surprised by what the Toyota’s fuel-economy computer reported after a week and nearly 300 miles of driving might be a bit of an understatement.

 

2016 Toyota Corolla S | 50.1 MPG


2016 Toyota Corolla 50 MPG

That’s right, kids. After just over 290 miles of driving in mixed conditions that included downtown Chicago, gridlock on the Eisenhower Expressway, and about 150 or so miles of smooth highway sailing at 55-60 MPH, my 2016 Toyota Corolla S Premium tester got 50.1 MPG.

Before anyone asks, yes. Yes, I do trust the fuel economy calculations on modern cars. Yes, I did inflate the tires a bit on the high side (38 psi). Yes, I did intentionally keep my cruising speeds on the low side to boost fuel economy. That said, I do those things with each and every car I test drive, and I’ve never seen cars so significantly and consistently out-perform their EPA ratings- even using their own computer-reported fuel economy figures. Never, except for 4 cyl. Toyotas.

 

2016 Toyota Corolla S | Final Thoughts


Despite the stellar fuel economy and top-of-the-line S Premium package on the car, my 2016 Toyota Corolla tester wasn’t perfect. For starters, the SofTex “leather” felt a bit off- and leather, in general, seems out of place in what is, otherwise, a very simple A-B type of car. As a baby-hauler, it’s OK, and you could try to justify the leather as being easier to clean- but I didn’t find the cloth seats in my 2014 tester all that difficult to clean, either. Neither did I find the S Premium package to offer particularly Sporty or Premium handling.

All in all, the latest 2016 Toyota Corolla S Premium is an excellent, well-engineered machine that delivers stellar, real-world fuel economy and decent passenger space. It’ll hold its resale value and will reliably get you from point A to point B in reasonable comfort for $23,890. You can also, however, save yourself around five thousand dollars by picking up a 2016 Toyota Corolla without the S Premium package and the fake leather seats, and that’s what I’d recommend you do when you go Corolla shopping. But, like, definitely go Corolla shopping.

 

Original content from Gas 2.

 

Jo Borrás

I've been in the auto industry 1997, and write for a number of blogs in the IM network. You can also find me on Twitter, at my Volvo fansite, or chasing my kids around Oak Park, IL.