Sadly we won’t be seeing this particular Toyota in Malaysia any time soon.
Toyota has taken the wraps off its all-new Toyota Yaris supermini.
Unlike the hatchback Vios seen locally, or the rebadged Mazda2 variant in sold in the US, this new Yaris has been specifically designed and built for the European market in mind, mainly because the Yaris is actually Toyota’s best selling model in Europe
Like all cars in recent years, this petite supermini has grown with each successive generation. However it is still small enough to squeeze through the busy city streets, where most of these things will spend the majority of their lives on.
Contrary to the shortened Vios we have in Malaysia, this forth generation supermini is the first model in Toyota’s current lineup to be built on the modular GA-B platform of the Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA).
As for the design, this is undoubtably a handsome looking hatchback. Its massively swollen arches, which can fit up to 17 inches beneath it, gives this Japanese hatch a hot hatch stance. The angry face in the front, complete with LED daytime running lights may be a bit too fussy for some, while the rear may have borrowed some design cues from the funky CH-R, but overall the Yaris looks fun.
Under the bonnet of this supermini lies a comparatively large 1.5 litre three cylinder Hybrid Dynamic Force Engine. Part of the Japanese car maker’s forth generation hybrid powertrain, the total power output is 93 hp and 120 Nm of torque.
It doesn’t sound like a lot, and frankly it isn’t a lot, but where this engine shines is its claimed economy. Mated to a e-CVT automatic transmission, Toyota touts that the Yaris is able to manage a WLTP combined cycle fuel economy figure of 3.7 l/100 km, and only output 85 g/km of CO2.
Even more impressive is the fact that the electric motor in the transaxle is able to run on pure EV mode at speeds of up to 130 km/h. Significantly faster than what this car would do in the hands of most people.
On the inside of the Yaris, the dash design isn’t nearly as funky as the exterior.
Black is the predominant theme in this dark interior, with the standout only being the 8 inch touchscreen infotainment unit with standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration mounted high up in the centre console. If one so chooses, an optional 10 inch heads up display, an 8 speaker JBL hifi system and a heated steering wheel are also available from the options menu.
In terms of features, all Yaris models across the range will come standard with the Toyota Safety Sense suite of active safety features. These include Pre-Collision System with vehicle, pedestrian and cyclist detection, Intersection Turn Assistance, Emergency Steering Assistance, Intelligent Adaptive Cruise Control, Road Sign Assist, Lane Departure Alert with Steering Control and Lane Trace Assist and Automatic High-Beam.
The Yaris supermini is also the first Toyota to feature centre SRS airbags.
Up against tough competition from the likes of the VW Polo, Ford Fiesta, Suzuki Swift and Mazda2, this supermini from the Japanese auto giant has a lot to prove when it goes on sale in a couple of months.
Enthusiasts though will probably be more interested in the homologated, 257 hp, six speed manual, all wheel drive GR Yaris that will come in October.