After enjoying the wild child European sourced 1.8 litre Yaris RS hatch earlier this year the Japanese sourced 1.5 litre Yaris hatch is a little more circumspect in behaviour and performance. It’s ideally suited to the fleet as an office pool car or urban runabout.
The 1496cc Yaris engine produces 80 kW @ 6000 rpm and torque is rated at 141 Nm @ 4200 rpm, which means the performance is pretty sprightly despite the car being saddled with a four-speed automatic transmission. To be fair to the Yaris 1.5, we spent most of our test period in urban traffic where the automatic transmission was very much appreciated. The car easily nips in and out of traffic and will easily hold its own merging into motorway traffic.
Sadly because of our depreciating dollar Toyota New
I was even more appalled that for this price the Yaris does not come with electronic stability control, nor does it have climate control air-conditioning but it does have remote audio controls on the steering wheel.
Interior updates included new upholstery across the Hatchback range. The centre console was also refreshed and the 1.5 litre model’s interior has been enhanced with chrome plated air conditioning vents and park brake accents.
The centrally placed digital odometer console, allowed the Yaris designers to offer storage compartments in front of the driver and passenger as well as the normal glove box and door pockets. There are twin cup holders plus a centrally placed bottle holder and plenty of other little storage areas that other manufacturers would do well to copy.
Externally the wee Yaris still has the cute factor in spades, especially in this shade of Red; it’s a shame that the interior fabrics and plastics are more conservative in colour but no doubt they will prove durable in the long term.