NEW AURIS LEAVES BLAND­NESS BE­HIND

The re­vamped range is bet­ter look­ing than most ri­vals in its class, and it’s not at all bor­ing to boot

Belfast Telegraph - NI Carfinder - - Front Page - JONATHAN CROUCH

WHAT do Toy­ota have to do to get you in­ter­ested in buy­ing an Auris? Make it bet­ter to drive? They did that in 2012, at the same time mak­ing it bet­ter look­ing, bet­ter value for money, bet­ter built and more ef­fi­cient.

That ought to have been enough to pro­pel Toy­ota’s Fo­cus ri­val from also-ran to top of the field and, ob­jec­tively speak­ing, the Auris was an im­pres­sive all-rounder. Thing is, no­body here re­ally took it that se­ri­ously, de­spite it be­ing built right here in Bri­tain.

Un­de­terred, Toy­ota has set about im­prov­ing the Auris still fur­ther, re­veal­ing a re­vised line-up.

Driv­ing Ex­pe­ri­ence

Toy­ota has added a 1.2-litre turbo petrol unit and a 1.6-litre tur­bod­iesel to the range, join­ing the ex­ist­ing 1.33-litre and 1.6-litre petrol power plants, and the heav­ily re­vised 1.4-litre D4-D tur­bod­iesel, now the clean­est diesel en­gine in the 90PS class.

Cost of Own­er­ship

This Auris has been given a good on­ceover in the ef­fi­ciency depart­ment. The 1.2T model ben­e­fits from fuel con­sump­tion of 60.1mpg and 109g/ km CO2 emis­sions when fit­ted with a man­ual gear­box. Go for the Mul­tidrive S trans­mis­sion and those num­bers im­prove to 61.4mpg and 106g/km.

The diesel 1.4 D-4D here re­turns com­bined cy­cle fuel con­sump­tion of 83.1mpg, while CO2 emis­sions have dropped sharply from 99 to 89g/km.

The 1.6 D4-D diesel has CO2 emis­sions of 104g/km. Com­bined fuel con­sump­tion is 68.9mpg.

Sum­mary

Some cars are an in­stant hit, oth­ers are a bit of a slow burn, and then there’s the Toy­ota Auris. It’s a car whose ap­peal is, to many, so hard to fathom that it never re­ally chal­lenges the top con­tenders in the sales charts.

The rea­son? It’s strug­gled to shake off the stigma of be­ing a bit, well, bor­ing. But here’s the thing. This lat­est car isn’t bland at all. It’s a fam­ily hatch­back de­signed with care, built with dili­gence and bet­ter look­ing than most ri­vals in its class.

Toy­ota per­haps needs to in­ject a bit of at­ti­tude into the Auris range with a re­ally po­tent sports model. It might not make too many sales but it’ll have a halo ef­fect over the rest of the range. Over­all, the Auris is a good car, en­cum­bered by an out of date rep­u­ta­tion. It’s time to leave the old at­ti­tudes be­hind.

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