Big­ger and bet­ter Ya­ris laun­ches in SA

George Herald - Auto Dealer - - News - G­LEN HILL

Toyo­ta has laun­ched a big­ger, bet­ter Ya­ris and in­vi­ted my­self and ot­her mo­to­ring journalists to dri­ve it through the rol­ling hills of K­waZu­luNa­tal.

The litt­le ha­tch is po­we­red by a 1,5-lit­re, four­cy­lin­der pe­trol en­gi­ne which pro­du­ces 79kW and 140Nm. The VVT-i DOHC 16-val­ve u­nit re­vs pret­ty free­ly and dri­ves a choi­ce of either a 5-speed ma­nu­al ge­ar­box or Toyo­ta “Mul­tidri­ve” Con­ti­nu­ous­ly Va­ri­a­ble Trans­mis­si­on (CVT).

T­his choi­ce is then aug­men­ted by four gra­de of­fe­rings. The Xi is the en­try mo­del, which is fol­lo­wed by the mid-gra­de Xs, Cross and S­port va­ri­ants.

The CVT of­fe­ring is a­vai­la­ble on­ly in the Xs gra­de. The CVT, I i­ma­gi­ne, will in any e­vent ap­pe­al on­ly to a very par­ti­cu­lar buy­er, one who ab­so­lu­te­ly in­sis­ts on an au­to­ma­tic trans­mis­si­on.

I am no fan of CVTs and t­his one is no ex­cep­ti­on.

Ad­mit­ted­ly, trying to mo­ve bris­k­ly through hil­ly ter­rain is the last thing a CVT was in­ten­ded for, but the car re­vved up and do­wn ex­ces­si­ve­ly as it tried to find e­qui­li­bri­um. Ha­ving said that, it was a ple­a­su­re in traf­fic, w­he­re it mo­ved al­ong as smoothly as any au­to­ma­tic.

The ma­nu­al was a dif­fe­rent vehi­cle en­ti­re­ly and it tur­ned the hills and cur­ves in­to an en­ti­re­ly en­joy­a­ble ex­pe­rien­ce.

TORQUE

The en­gi­ne pro­vi­des e­nough torque to pull the Ya­ris al­ong wit­hout much need for do­wns­hif­ting if a lei­su­re­ly ri­de is all that’s wan­ted.

Ho­we­ver, if so­mething mo­re ex­ci­ting is re­qui­red, the free-re­vving en­gi­ne al­lows you to use the ge­ars as much as you li­ke. The front sus­pen­si­on is by way of a M­cP­her­son strut and the re­ar fe­a­tu­res a tor­si­on be­am. T­he­se pro­vi­de for a ri­de that is com­for­ta­ble and hand­ling that is pre­dic­ta­ble.

De­pen­ding on the mo­del, the “rol­ling-stock” con­sis­ts of either 15”or 16” w­heels. The hig­her­specced mo­dels are e­quip­ped with 16” rub­ber fe­a­tu­re di­recti­o­nal-de­sign al­loy w­heels (with ma­chi­ned fa­ce t­re­at­ment) and 195/50/R16 ty­res.

The en­try-le­vel Xi mo­dels fe­a­tu­re key­less en­try and push-but­ton s­tart, four-spea­ker au­dio sy­stem with USB and Blu­e­tooth functi­o­na­li­ty, mul­ti-in­for­ma­ti­on dis­play, e­lec­tri­cal­ly ad­jus­ta­ble ex­te­ri­or mir­rors, front po­wer win­dows, e­lec­tric po­wer s­teer­ing and ma­nu­al air-con­di­ti­o­ning.

Xs mo­dels add au­to­ma­tic lig­hts, 16” al­loy w­heels, re­trac­ta­ble ex­te­ri­or mir­rors, re­ar po­wer win­dows, le­at­her s­teer­ing w­heel and ge­ar knob, s­teer­ing swit­ches as well as LED day­ti­me run­ning lig­hts.

FLAGSHIP

The Cross va­ri­ant is ba­sed on the Xs gra­de and in­her­its roof rails, black si­de moul­ding and brus­hed me­tal a­pron t­re­at­ment. Ser­ving as the flagship to the ran­ge is the S­port mo­del which, as the na­me sug­ge­sts, fe­a­tu­res a host of spor­ty en­han­ce­ments, such as a red stit­ched le­at­her s­teer­ing w­heel and ge­ar knob, a re­ar boot spoi­ler, si­de skirts and front and re­ar spoi­lers.

T­he­se are roun­ded off by a sig­na­tu­re red accent stri­pe. Ge­a­red for the needs of mil­le­ni­als, the Xs, Cross and S­port mo­dels ha­ve a new tou­chscreen in­fo­tai­n­ment sy­stem.

In ad­di­ti­on to the s­tan­dard AM/FM, USB and Blu­e­tooth functi­o­na­li­ty, the new au­dio sy­stem fe­a­tu­res full smartp­ho­ne in­te­gra­ti­on and sup­port via Ap­ple CarPlay and An­droid Au­to+ pro­to­cols. W­hil­st CarPlay u­ses stan­dar­di­sed Ap­ple ap­pli­ca­ti­ons with Si­ri in­te­gra­ti­on, An­droid u­sers are a­ble to ful­ly cu­s­to­mi­se which apps they would li­ke to “mir­ror” on the au­dio screen.

As with a smartp­ho­ne, u­sers are a­ble to cu­s­to­mi­se the ho­me screen la­yout u­sing a “drag and drop” techni­que. Ad­di­ti­o­nal apps can be ad­ded via Wi-Fi con­necti­vi­ty. Sa­tel­li­te na­vi­ga­ti­on is al­so in­clu­ded.

SPACE

Im­por­tant­ly, the in­cre­a­se in ex­te­ri­or si­ze has trans­la­ted in­to mo­re in­te­ri­or space for both pas­sen­gers and lug­ga­ge. Acti­ve and pas­si­ve sa­fe­ty are well at­ten­ded with Xi, Xs and Cross mo­dels e­quip­ped with dri­ver and pas­sen­ger ai­r­bags, I­so­fix points, ABS with Bra­ke As­sist (BA), E­lec­tro­nic Bra­ke-for­ce Dis­tri­bu­ti­on (EBD), Vehi­cle S­ta­bi­li­ty Con­t­rol (VSC), se­at belt pre­ten­si­o­ner and for­ce li­mi­ters as well as Hill As­sist Con­t­rol (HAC).

S­port de­ri­va­ti­ves are ad­di­ti­o­nal­ly out­fit­ted with si­de, cur­tain and dri­ver knee ai­r­bags. All Ya­ris mo­dels co­me with a three y­e­ar or 45 000km ser­vi­ce plan and three y­e­ar or 100 000km war­ran­ty.

DE­TAILS

The mo­del pri­cing is as fol­lows: 1,5 Xi MT R230 800; 1,5 Xs MT - R253 400; 1,5 Xs CVT - R268 500; 1,5 Cross - R268 500; 1,5 S­port R286 000.

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