Toy­ota Yaris hy­brid

Macclesfield Express - - MOTORING -

IT doesn’t mat­ter how many times it hap­pens, the mo­ment an elec­tri­cally-pow­ered car glides into mo­tion al­ways feels a bit un­nat­u­ral to me.

Not bad un­nat­u­ral, but like magic, sur­pris­ing and de­light­ful.

Hy­brids are noth­ing new, of course, but I’ve never seen one as small as the Toy­ota Yaris.

It’s a nice look­ing car – very much the cocky younger brother of the Toy­ota fam­ily. It fol­lows that cur­rent trend for sharp­en­ing up the smoother lines of pre­vi­ous mod­els, and as a re­sult ap­pears a bit more mas­cu­line and men­ac­ing.

Its size means it’s very nippy, and easy to park, but that doesn’t mean it’s tiny inside.

The petrol bit is a tidy one-litre unit which does the job on the city’s streets, but is per­haps a bit un­der­pow­ered for mo­tor­way cruis­ing.

How­ever, Toy­ota claims it can do about 80 miles to the gal­lon, which is some com­pen­sa­tion.

I didn’t get near that, but most of my weekly drive was on the mo­tor­way when the petrol en­gine is work­ing harder than the elec­tric mo­tor.

The ver­sion I had for the test week was the Hy­brid Ex­cel 5 Door CVT Smart and Ap­pear­ance Pack. The ba­sic price of this model is a rather eye-wa­ter­ing £17,695, with op­tions push­ing it over the £20,000 mark. You should read that while bear­ing in mind that it is a hy­brid.

It’s so com­fort­able it seems a shame Toy­ota have sad­dled it with such a small fuel tank – the 36 litres (just un­der eight gal­lons) means you’d have to re­fuel on your way if you’re go­ing more than a few hun­dred miles.

But even so, when I did give it back at the end of the week, I was sorry to see it go.

It was so easy to drive, and such fun, it quickly be­came part of the fam­ily.

Which goes to show – you’re never re­ally too old to try some­thing new.

●● Toy­ota’s Yaris hy­brid

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