Toyota Yaris Hybrid
Welcome everyone, to the brand-new fourth generation Toyota Yaris. First thoughts on the looks? It’s been to the gym that’s for sure. Those arches have got pretty swole and the new face is alarmingly angry – hopefully it won’t scare off too many of its intended customer base.
We’re on board with it though. The contrast coloured roof and folded rear end ensure it is recognisably Toyota, but there’s now enough interest to separate it from the smaller Aygo.
The big changes are under the skin, though. A new Yaris also means a debut for an all-new compact car platform known internally as GA-B. The platform is part of the Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA) structure so borrows many features from the mid-size GA-C base – upon which sit the Prius, the C-HR and the new Corolla.
Essentially, this all means that the fourth generation will be the safest and most rigid Yaris yet. Toyota is even going as far as saying it has been “engineered to be the world’s safest compact car.” Bold.
The new underpinnings also allow the Yaris’ dimensions to change pretty significantly. The new one is actually 5mm shorter than the outgoing model, though the wheelbase is actually 50mm longer and the whole car is 50mm wider.
This is good news for the looks, interior space and handling. It’s also 40mm lower than before and headroom apparently hasn’t been compromised. This means the seats are lower in the car, whereas you previously drove a Yaris whilst practically sitting on the roof.
toyota yaris hybrid
There are changes under the bonnet too. We’ll get more details closer to the 2020 on-sale date, but for now we know that Toyota will offer a cleaner, more powerful version of its 1.5-litre hybrid system, as well as petrol-only 1.5 and 1.0-litre three-cylinder engines.
Customers love the Yaris in hybrid form. Toyota has sold more than half a million since its introduction in 2012 – and apparently in city driving this new system will operate as an EV for 80 per cent of the time.
The interior is dominated by that main touchscreen, but there’s another smaller one between the two digital dials and even a 10-inch head-up display. The materials look slightly plusher than before too. And yes, that is felt on the door panels…
What do you reckon, Internet? On our wish list would be a new GRMN version from Toyota, or perhaps even a rebirth for the T Sport moniker. It’ll probably never happen, but if you don’t ask you don’t get, right?
STORY Greg Potts