Johannesburg - It has been rumoured for quite some time that Toyota South Africa would replace its local Corolla production with a new compact model, but now it has been officially confirmed, with the newcomer slated for introduction in 2021.
The local division announced at the State of the Motor Industry (SOMI) conference at Kyalami last week that R2.43 billion would be invested in the production of a new passenger car at the Prospecton plant from October 2021. It will not, however, replace the production of the latest Corolla Quest, which was also launched last week and which is based on the 11th-generation Corolla. The all-new 12th-generation Corolla will be imported to South Africa and is expected to be launched in March 2020.
But what is the new model that Toyota will produce here?
TSA is remaining tight-lipped about what this new model actually is, only revealing that it will be offered with both petrol and petrol-electric hybrid drivetrains - the latter being a first for the production facility.
Earlier rumours suggested that the new vehicle would be a more affordable model than the Corolla, and that would certainly make sense given that the traditional C-segment buyer is either migrating to an SUV or downsizing to a smaller Polo-sized hatchback.