When Toyota’s Prius arrived more than 20 years ago, the idea of a petrol engine and electric motor working together to power a car was considered exotic and suitable for automotive fringe-dwellers only. A Prius in the driveway was a badge of honour for proud eco-warriors.

Over time, the strikingly new has become the norm with numerous brands putting hybrid models firmly in the mainstream. And full battery-electric vehicles have taken over as the high-tech ice-breakers.

So, in recent years, as interest in the Prius has began to slow, its hybrid heart has been transplanted into the country’s best-selling passenger car – the evergreen Corolla. Which brings us to the current Corolla Hybrid, in mid-spec SX grade.

Does the hybrid set-up help or hinder the Corolla in its natural habitat – the city crawl and the suburban sprawl?