The world’s most popular car, the Toyota Corolla, reaches its 50th anniversary: another big milestone for the already majorly successful Japanese car. The Corolla’s globally popular performance is reflected in the fact that it is one in every five new vehicles sold.
It was originally designed as a ‘people’s car’, coming in both saloon and estate body types and offering exquisitely high build and equipment features. Luxurious features included bucket seats and a floor-mounted gear lever. The first-generation model soon became Japan’s top-selling vehicle within three years.
The Corolla then became Toyota’s second model to be imported to the UK, after the Corona in 1966. It was then evolved through many shapes and sizes until the name was dropped from the Verso model in 2008.
The Corolla not only demonstrated its capability as a versatile family car, it also showcased its performance edge in UK motorsports; the Corolla GT rear-wheel drive coupé took first place in the 1986 and 1987 British Touring Car Championships, driven both times by Chris Hodgetts.
The vehicle is now being built all over the world and still enjoys enormous success as a comfortable and reliable family car, with plants in Turkey, North America, Australia and Malaysia. With 50 years of incredible success, the Corolla will continue to be one of Toyota’s most popular models all over the world.