First Generation (2001-2006)
The TOYOTA COROLLA RUNX was developed as the COROLLA's 2-box 5-door hatchback model, and with its sister model the TOYOTA ALLEX, it went on sale in January 2001 at the TOYOTA COROLLA store. By employing a European design to its exterior, the RUNX was developed as a model to be sold primarily in Europe. A differing point from the ALLEX was the design of the front grille; a honeycomb metal-plated grille design was utilized. The overall body was in line with that of the TOYOTA VITZ, which gained great popularity in Europe, consisting of an A-pillar with a sharp incline, a thick C-pillar, and a side panel design that had a sturdy and heavy feel. The body size measured in length, width, and height at 4,175mm, 1,695mm, and 1,470mm, making its base a 5 number size, and maximizing its usability as a city-use vehicle. Furthermore, this allowed it to secure a spacious interior similar to that of a sedan.
For the interior, installments such as the self-luminous meter, high-quality seat covers, and wooden and metal panels led to an overall luxurious and refined design.
Two options were available for the engine-the 1,496 with 110 horsepower and 1,795cc with 190 horsepower, both inline four-cylinder gasoline engines. Both options were available for the FF, but only the 1,496cc engine was available for the 4WD.
The transmissions combined with these were the 6-speed manual or 4-speed automatic for the FF, and the 4-speed automatic for the 4WD.
As for the fuel consumption, that of the 1.8 grade ranged between 12.0km/L and 13.0km/L, and for the 1.5 grade, between 14.4 km/L and 16.6km/L.
In September 2002, changes were made to the exterior, utilizing the same design that was employed for European export editions. The front lights emphasized straight lines for a fiercer and more powerful look, and the designs of the grille and bumper were also changed. Moreover, in terms of the suspension system as well, the shock absorber's setting was changed, leading to further improvements in riding comfort.
The engine was improved as well to adhere to Ultra-Low Emission Vehicle (U-LEV) standards. Furthermore, for the 4WD grade, the 1,795cc was made available.
In April 2004, minor changes to the interior and exterior designs were made. In terms of the outer appearance, the front lights that were changed to a “teary-eyes shape” (with the edges slanting downward) were a distinctive feature, again featuring elements that were in line with the design of the TOYOTA VITZ. For the interior, the design of the instrument panel area was changed, and improvements were made to the center console, further increasing usability and quality.
In December 2004, improvements were made on the 1,496cc engine, leading to cleaner gas emission and achievement of “2005 Gas Emission Standards 75% Level.” Furthermore, by also being certified as “2010 Fuel Consumption Standards +5%,” the vehicle was subject to special tax measures.
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