Toyota yaris 2018 review//Best Sedan car
The Toyota Yaris impresses with its features and baby Corolla like looks
The Yaris is offered with only a 1.5 petrol, which is peppy and frugal
The Toyota Yaris will take on the Honda City and Maruti Suzuki
My drive on the Toyota Yaris was not meant to happen. At least not this soon anyway as the Bengaluru based company invited us all down to its home city for the first press drive. It was a frantic call from one of my colleagues who’s now enjoying the company of some fantastic electric cars, informing me that I was to now go on this drive. Typically I would have received that news with pleasure, only this time jealousy got the better of me. That said I am still getting to drive the Yaris – one of the most hotly anticipated cars of this year. I first saw the Toyota Yaris in flesh at the Auto Expo 2018 and it did look like a promising compact sedan; right for its segment. There are several players in that space and most have seen a steady rise in sales. Leading that pile are the new Hyundai Verna, Honda City and Maruti Suzuki Ciaz. The Verna has been selling at an average of 4500 units per month since its launch in August 2017. The sales of Honda City might have taken a hit, but it remains a strong contender. And the big surprise remains the now ageing Maruti Suzuki Ciaz, running strong after many years without any proper generation change. So you’d think it was a no-brainer for Toyota to enter the compact sedan segment with the Yaris. Well, it still took it long enough! In fact even after the decision was finally taken, it’s taken three years of planning, designing and implementation to make the Yaris sedan a reality for India.
The instant first impression of the Yaris is that it’s a baby Corolla and you’re not wrong. The sleek body and the subtlety in design screams Toyota and there’s no aggression whatsoever. The wider lower grille could have given the Yaris a bit of an ‘in your face’ look; but frankly, it looks calm, collected and very sure of itself. The bonnet gets some musculature, but that’s about it. On the side though, there are lovely character lines, which make the car look elegant and also serve as a major differentiator from its rivals – a very good thing.
Where the car does impress is on safety – something Toyota seems to be playing up as a USP on the Yaris. The Yaris will be the safety benchmark with 7 Airbags this includes dual airbags up front, 2 curtain airbags, 2 front side airbags and a driver knee airbag), ABS with EBD and Brake Assist as standard, The top-spec VX also gets Hill Start Assist Control as well as Vehicle Stability Control. The cabin is well laid out and the ‘Waterfall Design’ on the dashboard looks attractive. The 7-inch touchscreen system is available from the G second variant onwards and gives you access to Wi-Fi, navigation and Mirrorlink which sadly did not work when we tried with both Android and iOS devices.
The Yaris is petrol-only and there’s no diesel engine variant on the way either. The car’s 15-inch wheels help in two departments – reducing road noise from seeping into the cabin and fuel efficiency. Toyota claims that the manual transmission variant returns a fuel efficiency figure of 17.1 kmpl, while the CVT returns 17.8 kmpl – and that’s pretty good. But it does affect the way the Yaris drives because the engine has been tuned to churn out better efficiency. The 1.5-litre, 4-cylinder engine is pretty silent. Even at 3000 rpm, there’s very little sound that enters the cabin; so yes, the NVH levels are pretty good. The engine comes mated to a 6-speed manual transmission or a 7-speed CVT. Now, the CVT is available right from the base variant and this makes automatic more accessible to buyers. Toyota is simply catering to the growing need for automatics in the segment, and unlike its rivals’ will not provide it only on the top or medium spec.
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