2021 Toyota Corolla Apex Edition Aims for the Curves in Bold Style

By: Funk's Toyota   |   15 Jul 2020
  • Limited-edition Corolla Sedan combines aggressive design with tighter handling

  • Toyota will offer 150 Apex Editions for 2021, based on the SE 

  • Track-tuned chassis upgrades include unique shocks with internal rebound springs

  • Offered with available 6-speed manual transmission

All 2021 Corolla models add safety features and Android Auto Compatibility

TORONTO – Ontario, July 15, 2020– Toyota has a message to driving enthusiasts looking for a head-turning, corner-carving affordable sport sedan, and it’s right in the name of a special new model for 2021: Corolla Apex Edition. In track driving, drivers aim to “clip the apex” of a corner to achieve the quickest lap times. This APEX Edition package is available on the Corolla SE model grade and will turn heads while turning corners with greater zeal.

The Apex Edition maximizes the inherent potential of the Corolla sedan’s high-strength TNGA-C platform, multi-link rear suspension and 169-horsepower 2.0-litre Dynamic Force Engine. A factory-custom body package accentuates the Corolla’s edgy styling, and the new model issues a punchier bark with a sport-tuned exhaust unique to Corolla APEX. 

Toyota will offer 150 Corolla Apex Editions for 2021, with most equipped with the Dynamic Shift CVT (continuously variable transmission). The CVT offers simulated 10-speed Sequential Shiftmatic steps, Sport Mode, and paddle shifters. The key to the Dynamic Shift CVT’s distinct performance feel is a gearset used as a “first” gear for start-off acceleration, before seamlessly handing off to the CVT’s pulley system. 

For sports driving purists who like to “row their own,” Toyota is equipping just 50 of these special models based on the SE grade with the 6-speed Intelligent Manual Transmission (6 iMT). With downshift rev-matching control, the 6-speed intelligent Manual Transmission (6 iMT) automatically adjusts engine revs when changing gears, ensuring smooth shifting that makes any driver feel like a stick-shift pro.

Grabbing Attention, Gripping the Curves
Before the Corolla Apex Edition turns its first corner, it will attract stares with its low profile, hunkered-down look. A sport, aerodynamic black body kit complete with bronze accents, a front spoiler, fog light covers, side moldings and rear diffuser aid in high-speed vehicle stability. A rear trunk aero spoiler will be available as an additional option for those who want to display even more attitude.

The Corolla Apex Edition really lives up to its name thanks to unique track-tuned suspension. Toyota engineers developed the dynamic characteristics through extensive testing on different tracks around the world, including TMC Higashi-Fuji Proving Ground in Japan, Toyota Arizona Proving Ground and MotorSport Ranch in Texas. 

Unique coil springs lower the vehicle by 0.6 inches (15.2 mm) while the increased spring rate reduces vehicle roll angle and provides flatter cornering and steering response. Specially tuned shocks with internal rebound springs provide increased damping force that controls vertical and roll movement. Unique solid stabilizer bars with increased rigidity help to decrease vehicle roll angle while improving overall agility. Additionally, new jounce bumpers ensure the lowered ride height doesn’t hinder ride quality. All combined Apex Edition suspension changes increase roll stiffness by 47% in the front and 33% in the rear. 

The 18-inch flow-formed cast aluminum wheels feature a gloss black appearance, but even more importantly they are specially developed to aid in brake cooling while offering a mass reduction of 2.2 lbs. (1 kg) per wheel. Bespoke electronic power steering (EPS) has been tuned specifically for the Apex Edition to complement its dynamic suspension changes. The new EPS tuning provides a distinctive flavor with a sportier, v-shaped build-up response. All of these changes are paired with a specially developed catback exhaust that features a throatier, aggressive tone at start-up while also providing a bolder, enhanced tone at wide-open throttle. A unique 3.5-inch stainless steel tip was developed to match the vehicle’s styling. 

The bronze/black combo plays off the exclusive exterior colour for the Corolla Apex Edition, Cement Grey with Black Sand Pearl roof available on a manual and automatic transmission and features black mirror caps. The triple J-shaped clearance lamps with LED lights along with LED turn signals give the SE grade an audacious look up front, while LED taillamps with smoked outer light lenses create a unique lighting signature in the back. 

The Corolla SE Apex Edition will feature sport fabric seats with heated front seats, a leather wrapped steering wheel and power slide moonroof. 

A Dynamic Force to be Reckoned With
The Corolla Apex Edition is suitably powered for its mission by the 2.0-litre Dynamic Force Engine. Standard in all Corolla SE grades, the engine derives its impressive power and efficiency from a high compression Toyota D-4S fuel injection system (13:1) that combines direct injection and secondary port injectors; high-speed combustion; VVT-iE intelligent variable valve-timing on the intake side, and VVT-i on the exhaust. VVT-iE uses an electric motor instead of oil pressure to control the variable valve timing.

A two-discharge port oil pump and a variable cooling system with electric water pump help maximize engine performance and efficiency. The more efficient cooling system also ensures quicker cabin heating on cold days and quicker cool-down when the air conditioner is used. All of these technologies, along with ultra-low internal friction, give the 2.0-litre engine a maximum thermal efficiency of 40 percent, among the highest for a current passenger vehicle engine. 

You can’t feel thermal efficiency, but you can feel the effects of 169 peak horsepower at 6,600 rpm and 151 lb.-ft. peak torque at 4,800 rpm, whether channeled through the Dynamic Shift CVT or 6-speed iMT. With the CVT, the manufacture estimated fuel consumption is 7.6 L/100 km city / 5.8 L/100 km highway / 6.7 L/100 km combined. With the 6-speed iMT, the estimated fuel consumption is 8.2 L/100 km city / 6.5 L/100 km highway / 7.4 L/100 km combined. 

The 2021 Toyota Corolla Sedan is offered with a choice of several powertrains. The refined L series models are built around a powerful yet efficient 1.8-litre four-cylinder engine that generates 139 peak horsepower and is paired with either a six-speed manual or a continuously variable transmission (CVT). The sportier S series models are fitted with a larger, 2.0-litre Dynamic Force four-cylinder engine that delivers 169 peak horsepower, paired with either an intelligent manual transmission with rev matching, or a direct shift CVT with steering wheel mounted paddle shifters. Regardless of powertrain, all models enjoy a low centre of gravity, a highly rigid body structure and a finely tuned multi-link rear suspension that make the Corolla Sedan agile and responsive – in short, super fun to drive.

Corolla Gets Even Better for 2021
The entire Corolla line debuts enhancements for 2021. All models gain Android Auto™ compatibility, joining the Apple CarPlay™ compatibility that were already standard on the 2020 model. 

Toyota also enhanced safety for the 2021 Corolla Sedan, adding rear side airbags to bring the total number of airbags in the vehicle to 10. Rear Cross-Traffic Alert with Blind Spot Monitor will be standard on the LE grade or above with CVT.

All Corolla models for 2021 gain Automatic Engine Shut-Off, which will automatically turn off the engine after a pre-determined period of time in the event the vehicle is left running. The system can send an enhanced audible and visual warning to the Smart Key system control fob, and future enhancements will include smartphone app capabilities as an added reminder. 

High Tech and Advanced Safety Onboard
The 2021 Corolla SE APEX edition comes standard with Audio Plus with Remote that includes Remote Connect (1-year trial), Safety Connect (1 year trial) and Service Connect (10 year trial). Also standard on the SE grade is an 8 inch. touch-screen display; six speakers; 1 USB audio port, 1 USB charge port and SiriusXM® with 3-month All Access trial.

Bold and Sleek: Corolla Nightshade Edition Returns for 2021
The Corolla Nightshade Edition, returns for 2021 on the SE grade. This one is another eye-grabber, with bold black accents garnishing the customer’s choice of Super White, or Black Sand Pearl exteriors. Blacked-out 18-inch alloy wheels, along with black bumpers, front grille surround, mirror caps, side rockers, door handles, rear spoiler, and exterior badges give the Corolla Nightshade edition a factory custom look.

The SE Upgrade package comes standard with the 169-horsepower 2.0-litre Dynamic Force Engine and offers the choice between the Dynamic Shift CVT or 6-speed iMT, making the Nightshade Edition a feisty performer.

Advanced Safety Tech
All 2021 Corolla models, including the Apex Edition, will come standard with Toyota Safety Sense 2.0 suite of driver-assist technologies. TSS 2.0 was already standard on all 2020 Corolla models and includes:

  • Pre-Collision System with Daytime/Low-Light Vehicle and Pedestrian Detection, plus Daytime Bicycle Detection

  • Full-Speed Range Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (CVT only)

  • Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist and Road Edge Detection

  • Automatic High Beams 

  • Lane Tracing Assist (CVT only)

About Toyota Canada Inc.
Toyota Canada Inc. (TCI) is the exclusive Canadian distributor of Toyota and Lexus vehicles. Toyota has sold over five million vehicles in Canada through a national network of 287 Toyota and Lexus dealerships. Toyota is dedicated to bringing safety, quality, dependability and reliability to the vehicles Canadians drive and the service they receive. TCI’s head office is located in Toronto, with regional offices in Vancouver, Calgary, Montreal and Halifax, and parts distribution centres in Toronto and Vancouver. Toyota operates two manufacturing facilities in Canada. Having produced more than eight million vehicles, popular Canadian models built at these facilities include Toyota RAV4, Toyota RAV4 Hybrid, Lexus RX 350 and RX 450h hybrid. Recent investments at its facilities in Ontario will allow for increased production of the top-selling Toyota RAV4 and RAV4 Hybrid models.