Toyota Yaris Cross

Dynamic Hybrid

Toyota Yaris Cross, 2021, side
Toyota Yaris Cross, 2021, side
Toyota Yaris Cross, 2021, tail
Toyota Yaris Cross, 2021, interior
Toyota Yaris Cross, 2021, rear seats
Toyota Yaris Cross, 2021, boot

BEEFING up an existing popular motorseems to be all the rage at the moment.

But this Yaris on steroids, otherwise known as the Yaris Cross, is a particularly striking looking vehicle. It retains the look of the Yaris, just about, but has an altogether more muscular appearance.

Built for the European market, Toyota designers says the theme for the car was "Easy, Fast, Smart," defined with the goal of creating a car that is an ideal partner for day-to-day activities. Not sure what that means, but it features the same wheelbase as the Yaris, but is taller, wider and longer.

It looks the part in metallic silver, with contrasting black roof andsitting high off the ground with, depending on the model,16, 17 or 18-inch alloys wheels. It has a ground clearance up from 25mm to 177mm and the wheel arches and sills get plastic protectors for that extra rugged look.

The front features eye-shaped headlights and two distinctive grilles flankedby two striking vertical daytime running lights.

To the rear there is a wide tailgate with a full-widthlight bars that feature LED technology.

The interior is smart, roomy and practical with hard-wearing upholstery, plus robust and logical switchgear.

Even the base model is well equipped with the usual electric and electronic aids, but this version addspiano black finish and dark chrome detailing on the upper front grille and auto-retracting door mirrors.

In the cabin, there are heated front seats, dual-zone air conditioning and an auto-dimming rear-view mirror and power lumbar adjustment on the driver's seat.

The brains of the car on this model is the new High Definition Toyota Smart Connect with nine-inch display touchscreen. Itcontrols major functions like navigation, infotainment and connectivity and offers live-updating via an embedded SIM card.

Navigation is connected cloud to services to provide live information. In addition, the binnacle contains a multi-function information right in the driver's eyeline.

It is a roomy place to be with good headroom, although as you might expect from this size car, legroom isn't so great in the back.

On the road, the car ispowered by Toyota's fourth-generation hybrid electric technology, a 1.5 litre three-cylinder petrol engine with electric motors and provides a lively, yet economical drive.

Acceleration is brisk, with the growl of the three-pot engine offering a sporty note.

The 0-60mph sprint is achieved in around 11 seconds, while at the same time delivering low carbon emissions.

For a vehicle sitting high off the ground, it has sharp, agile handling and direct steering.

It is equally at home on the motorway, with plenty of grunt available, while road and wind noise, although noticeably present on this more than the standard Yaris, are reasonably well suppressed.

Boot space is large and versatile with 397 litres increasing to 1,097 litres with the multi function seats folded.

FAST FACTS

Toyota Yaris Cross Dynamic Hybrid

Price:£26,465

Mechanical:114bhp, 1,490cc, 3-cylinder, petrol engine and electric motors driving front wheels via e-CVT transmission

Max Speed:106mph

0-62mph:11.1 seconds

Combined MPG:55.3

Insurance Group:12

C02 emissions:112g/km

Bik rating:26%

Warranty:3yrs/60,000 miles

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