Touting it as the “automobile industry’s highest-selling vehicle,” Toyota de Puerto Rico officials on Tuesday unveiled the 50th anniversary edition of its popular Corolla model, which showcases a refreshed look and new features.
The first Corolla went on sale in Japan in November 1966, and came to the U.S. in 1968. The automaker has sold 404,000 units over the five decades in Puerto Rico alone, Nancy Navales, vice president of Toyota de Puerto Rico said.
The automaker is looking to sell 5,000 anniversary edition and regular Corolla vehicles on the island in 2017, she added.
The special edition model Corolla SE 50th anniversary edition features a special paint — available in three exterior colors Black Cherry, Classic Silver, Blizzard Pearl — a moonroof, smart key and audio plus, among other touches. The vehicle was first introduced at the New York Auto Show in March.
“With incredible innovation elements, the 2017 Corolla brings a new style in tune with the demands of today’s driver. We always purse better driving experiences and the Corolla definitely intertwines many virtues such as quality, durability, affordability and evolution,” Navales said, during a news conference held at the Toyota Museum in Toa Alta, which features one of the largest private collections of its kind in the world, owned by auto executive Nicolás Amaro.
During the event, Toyota also unveiled the five-door Toyota iM hatchback, which seeks to lure a “new generation of consumers,” Navales said.
The sporty vehicle, combines a roomy, refined interior with a 1.8-liter DOHC Valvematic engine that is powerful and good on gas. The chassis, with sophisticated double-wishbone rear suspension and standard 17-inch alloy wheels, smooths out urban bumps and tames adventurous curves. For more hands-on driving fun, a 6-speed stick shift is also available. This vehicle was formerly sold under the Scion brand, which has been phased out and most of its models integrated into the Toyota lineup.
Toyota expects to sell 1,000 iM units in 2017, she said. The vehicles carry a sticker price starting at $29,995.
Both vehicles will be featured during the 2017 edition of the Puerto Rico International Auto Show.