Toyota Yaris Review

Toyota Yaris SR

Toyota Yaris Review

Toyota Yaris ReviewToyota Yaris Road Test

The 1.8 Dual VVT-I, petrol engine is a first for Toyota.

The 1.8 Dual VVT-I, petrol engine is a first for Toyota. Dual VVT-I means that it has intelligent timing on both intake and exhaust valves for more performance and better efficiency. This unit develops 133PS at 6,000rpm and produces 173Nm of torque at 4,400rpm, which is enough to surprise and impress.

It does have a bit of torque steer and a tendency to wander on uneven surfaces but it is easily controlled and adds to the fun. It takes 9.3 seconds to do the 0-62mph sprint and the top speed is 121mph, which is plenty for this country. Meanwhile, 170g/km of CO2 exits the chromed exhaust, putting the SR 1.8 in VED Band E.

As you would expect, the sportiness of the engine means a penalty in fuel economy. Nevertheless, the Yaris SR 1.8 has reasonable figures of 30.7(u), 47.1mpg (e-u) and the combined works out as 39.2mpg. It isn’t often that you get the best of both worlds. These figures are for the 1.8 with the non-optional, 5-speed manual transmission. A MM or MultiMode automatic and sequential box is available with all but the 1.0-litre VVT-I engine.

The new Yaris is 110mm longer than the previous model, with an extended wheelbase of 90mm. This, together with thinner front seat-backs, allows for a surprising amount of rear legroom and Toyota has made the space even more comfortable by re-routing the exhaust system so that there is no central tunnel to negotiate, just a flat floor.

There are three seats in the rear of the cabin but shoulder-room could be a slight problem if they are all occupied by adults. These seats have a 60:40 split and fold function using Toyota’s Easy-Flat system, which uses just one button to move the squab and back in unison. That said, Easy Flat is a bit of a misnomer; it may work on the 5-door version but, in the test car, I couldn’t fold them to form a flat floor.

The generous rear legroom doesn’t mean a loss in luggage space; in fact the boot is 130mm longer and 29mm wider than before. With the reclining, rear seats upright, the Yaris offers between 272- and 363-litres, capacity, depending on whether the sliding seats are at their foremost position or not. When the seats are folded, the capacity increases to 737-litres, measured to the top edge of the front seats or 1,086-litres, when loaded to the gunnels.

The boot floor also has a shallow compartment underneath with trays either side to keep things secure. There is a storage tray under the front passenger seat and no less than two glove-boxes, which is good news for hoarders but a disappointment in terms of materials.

The lids and upper dashboard are made from a hard plastic material that ‘tings’ when it is tapped with a fingernail. It isn’t in keeping with the rest of the cabin and fascia and tends to spoil the overall impression.

Toyota Yaris Review | Part Three
Toyota Yaris ReviewToyota Yaris Road Test
Toyota Yaris Road Test Data
Model ReviewedToyota Yaris SR
Body Type3-Door Hatchback
ColourEclipse Black Mica
Performance (manufacturers data) 
0 - 62 mph9.3 Seconds
Top Speed 121 mph
Transmission5-Speed Manual
Fuel TypeUnleaded Petrol
CO2 Emissions (NEDC Figures) g/km
Economy (NEDC Figures) 
Urban30.7 mpg
Extra Urban47.1 mpg
Combined39.2 mpg
Insurance Group7
Euro NCAP Rating5
Warranty3-Years / 60,000 Miles
Price (when tested on the 27/05/08)£13,595

The information contained within this Toyota Yaris review may have changed since publication on the 27 May 2008. The actual model road tested may feature options and functionality specific to that model, which may not be available as on option or be fitted to other models in the range. Options may not be available on UK specification cars. You may wish to check with your local Toyota dealer, before making a purchasing decision. E.&.O.E. You may NOT reproduce this car review in full or part, in any format without our written permission. © 2018