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16 January 2013

Detroit: Toyota's Furia Concept is a strong hint of the next-gen Corolla

Words by Christopher Kho | Photos courtesy of Toyota Motor Corporation
 
furia main
Toyota's design department has been playing things safe for the past decade. Sure, the cars they came up with don't look bad, but just a little bit too safe, if you ask me. But at last, the Japanese automaker's new priority is to “develop more dramatic, expressively designed vehicles.” And the result is this - the Toyota Corolla Furia Concept - which they revealed at the 2013 Detroit Auto Show.
 
There's no denying that the 11th generation Corolla, which is already past its due date, will look something (remotely) like this. Even Bill Fay, Toyota's Group Vice President and General Manager, said so: “The Corolla Furia Concept is an early indicator of where our compact car design may lead in the future." See? Told ya.
 
While Mazda has their “KODO Soul of Motion” and Hyundai with its own “Fluidic Sculpture” design philosophy, Toyota's theme in drawing up the Furia Concept is called “Iconic Dynamism.” Translated into layman's terms, it uses simple shapes to make it look confident, decisive, and recognizable, appealing to a younger crowd. And judging by the initial pictures, it seems that they've pulled it through.
 
furia facefuria trunkfuria taillightfuria wheel
furia frontfuria sidefuria rear
 
The Furia Concept also has an ambition to appear more athletic with a longer 2,700 mm wheelbase (100 mm more than before), shorter front and rear overhangs, and an awesome set of 19-inch alloy wheels. Adding to the effect are the dramatically raked windshield, sloped roofline, and more pronounced fender flares. And since this is after all a concept, they threw in a ducktail spoiler, twin tailpipes, and a diffuser for show - all of which are not expected to reach production.
 
Simple shapes alone, however, are not enough to make the upcoming all-new Corolla to stand out from a crowd of compact sedans. So to do this, they've slapped on a huge backed-out front grill, glaring LED headlamps, and top-mounted daytime running lights (DRL) that, when connected by a chro'sme trim, looks like a unibrow. Lastly, a pair of knife-shaped (kitchen, not army) LED taillights spice up the back view. Oh, did you also care to notice the small “foglamps” mounted on the very edges of the bumper?
 
furia frontquarterfuria rearquarter
 
Measuring up at 4,620 mm long, 1,805 mm wide, and 1,425 mm high, this Corolla Furia Concept is 80 mm longer, 45 mm wider, and 40 mm lower than the outgoing model. That should mean an increase in overall interior space and an added touch of sportiness. Unfortunately, this concept doesn't come with an interior just yet, so we'll have to wait a few more months to see what it'll eventually look like inside.
 
There is still no mention when the official launch date of the all-new 11th gen Toyota Corolla will be, but we're keeping our fingers crossed that the Philippine version ends up looking this good. Because if not, we're bound to settle for the Japan-spec Corolla Axio, which is nowhere near this sexy.