Toyota Thailand has released a video on its official YouTube page announcing the imminent debut of a new SUV on July 9. The company didn’t provide further details about the upcoming model beyond calling it a C-SUV, but it is largely rumoured to be the Corolla Cross that will compete against the likes of the Honda HR-V, Mazda CX-30, Subaru XV and Nissan Kicks in the country.

According to Headlightmag, which claims to have information from reliable sources, the Corolla Cross is positioned as a B-segment SUV, although given the C-SUV title, it might be more of a small C-segment SUV instead. The model will make its first global debut in Thailand, although it isn’t known if the model will be specific to the ASEAN market, or if it will be sold globally as well.

Preliminary details, which should be taken with a pinch of salt, indicate the Corolla Cross will be built on the Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA), specifically the TNGA-C platform also used for the Corolla and C-HR.

In terms of dimensions, it shares the same 2,640 mm wheelbase as the C-HR, but occupies a larger footprint, as it measures 4,460 mm long (+100 mm compared to the C-HR), 1,825 mm wide (+30 mm) and 1,620 mm tall (+ 55 mm) – the ground clearance is 161 mm.

Bringing in some competitors into the comparison, the HR-V measures 4,334 mm long, 1,772 mm wide, 1,605 mm tall and has a wheelbase spanning 2,610 mm. Meanwhile, the CX-30 is 4,395 mm long, 1,795 mm wide, 1,540 mm tall and has a 2,655 mm wheelbase, and the XV is 4,465 mm long, 1,800 mm wide, 1,615 mm tall and with a 2,665 mm wheelbase.

However, the Corolla Cross is overshadowed by the RAV4, which is underpinned by the TNGA-K platform and boasts even larger dimensions: 4,600 mm long, 1,855 mm wide, 1,685 mm tall and with a 2,690 mm wheelbase. As such, the RAV4 is more of a “true C-segment SUV,” which leaves the Corolla Cross in the same “grey area” as the C-HR – some refer to it as a an oversized B-segment SUV or a “quasi-C-segment.”

We’ve seen instances of this before, like with the Mercedes-Benz GLB, which uses the MFA2 architecture as the A-Class, CLA and GLA. The SUV is listed as part of the company’s compact vehicle range despite having dimensions that are very close to the GLC.

So, just what is the Corolla Cross for? An argument can be made that not everyone is attracted to the sleek and coupe-like design of the C-HR, and they may want something a bit more “traditional” in the SUV sense. Based on spotted prototypes of the model – the photo below is from Thai car inside – the finished product will look like a shrunken RAV4, with less compromises made to practicality in the pursuit of style. Think BMW X1 and X2.

The source also claims the Corolla Cross will be offered with two engine options, with the first being a flex fuel 2ZR-FBE 1.8 litre naturally-aspirated four-cylinder that produces 140 hp at 6,000 rpm and 175 Nm of torque at 4,000 rpm, paired with a CVT.

The other option is the hybridised 2ZR-FXE 1.8 litre NA four-pot (98 hp and 142 Nm) working with an electric motor (72 hp and 163 Nm) and an e-CVT, with a total output of 122 hp. Both powertrains are currently available for the C-HR in Thailand.

Pricing-wise, it is said the Corolla Cross range will start at around 900,000 baht (RM123,815) for the base, non-hybrid variant, with the range-topping hybrid option retailing at close to 1.2 million baht (RM165,087).

Once again, take this information with some restraint, as we’ll only know everything when the new Toyota SUV/Corolla Cross is revealed very soon. In the meantime, would you be interested in the new model based on what you’ve just read?