Home / Reviews / First Drive / All New Toyota Yaris First Drive Review – Elegance Meets Technology


Toyota Yaris 1 web

There’s a hot new Toyota, and it’s entered a segment long hotly-contested – the family sedan space. Does the new Yaris pack what it needs to take on the established big guns?

Story: Jim Gorde
Photography: Sanjay Raikar

Toyota Yaris 2 web

Some cars are immensely popular overseas. Badges, names, even specific variants are craved by many and known by many more. While the ‘Yaris’ name belongs to Toyota’s hatchback and World Rally Championship contender, it still isn’t a ‘Supra’. Nevertheless, Toyota had a gap in their portfolio similar to a glaring open lot in the midst of a crowded business space. The divide between the Etios and the Corolla Altis was one that needed to be bridged, and while we initially believed the Vios was set to arrive, it turned out to be the Yaris that rolled in.

At first glance, it looks every bit a modern sedan. Viewed head-on, the Toyota badge sits proudly in the centre of a Supra-like nose, flanked by long, sweeping headlamp clusters. LED daytime lights sit on either end of a large black air-dam. Pronounced lines accentuate its design focus – athletic, modern and contemporary. The side profile, while the company says it was focused on aero, looks slightly less interesting, with an additional crease running from the front wheel-arch and over the shoulder line. The Yaris is just over 4.4 metres long, and shares the Etios’s 2,550-mm wheelbase. The sloping roof is also quite pronounced, as are the flared wheel-arches. However, the wheels do appear a tad too small. Even so, they’re 15-inch alloys with 185/60 rubber – as with the Etios – in the interest of providing a better ride quality.

Toyota Yaris int rear 2 webThat’s what the Yaris is about, interestingly enough. The ride. The interior is a pleasing mix of black and beige, with several best-in-segment features – in terms of safety, comfort, and technology – including leather seats, a powered driver seat with height adjustment, gesture control for the infotainment system, roof-mounted rear air-vents, automatic headlamps, rain-sensing wipers, front and rear parking sensors, a rear parking camera, and, on the safety front, standard ABS with EBD and seven airbags, vehicle stability control and hill start assist. The “high solar energy absorbing” windscreen also protects from infrared radiation – an important addition to maintain cool in the cabin considering the kind of intense sunshine we have at times.


Toyota Yaris 3 web

The cabin has a fantastic level of attention to detail and ergonomics are spot-on. The quality of material is appreciable and there was a distinct upmarket feel to the whole layout. The seats themselves feature more padding and provide good support – both front and rear. Passengers in the back seat will, however, need to be six feet tall or below, because that’s about how much head-room there is on offer. The comfort, though, is commendable. The floor is also almost flat, thanks to the front-wheel drive layout and no torque-tube going to the rear. Speaking of the driveline.

Toyota Yaris int rear web

More on page 2 >


About the author: Jim Gorde


Deputy Editor at Car India and Bike India.
Believes that learning never stops, and that diesel plug-in hybrids are the only feasible immediate future until hydrogen FCEVs take over.

t: @CarIndia/@BikeIndia
IG: @carindia_mag/@bikeindia/@jimbosez


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