Small cars really fit the vibe of megacities. They take up a little places on the road, if it is necessary, they can turn around on any road, and there are not so many problems with parking. On the other hand, following automotive fashion and trying to please customers, manufacturers are doing everything to make compact cars not too inferior to models of a higher class in terms of convenience and spaciousness. Therefore, with modest external dimensions, they have relatively spacious interiors and trunks. In addition, small cars usually have a bright design, an affordable price, a fairly high level of passive and active safety, inexpensive maintenance and, as practice shows, excellent reliability.
The Toyota Yaris is one of two Japanese car brands that have made it to the top ten bestsellers in the European market. In 2018, 218 thousand cars were sold – two and a half times more than in Japan. Therefore, the development of a new, already fourth generation of the model was carried out with an eye to European tastes, and in addition, in the Japanese market, this car is now also called Toyota Yaris: the traditional name for the Islands – Vitz – has been retired. Yarises for Europe will continue to be produced in France: 300 million euros have been invested in the modernization of the plant. Unfortunately, Russian market lost this model in 2010, and there is no way to have it back soon.
The new Yaris is the first model on the compact GA-B platform, built within the TNGA modular architecture. Compared to the previous “bogie”, the center of gravity is 15 mm lower, the track is widened, the chassis geometry has been revised, and the body is now 30% stiffer, which should reduce vibration and noise.
With the change of generation, the Yaris became 5 mm shorter (3940 mm) and 40 mm lower (1470 mm), but the width increased immediately by 50 mm, to 1745 mm. The same increase in the wheelbase: now 2560 mm between the axles. The proportions of the body have become more “mature”, the hood is now longer, and the driver’s seat has been shifted 60 mm back. However, the Japanese did not say a word about the space in the second row and the volume of the trunk. The new Yaris is on average 50 kg lighter than the previous one: the curb weight of the base version is 950 kg.
New salon has better quality and softer materials. The front panel has lost weight and became lower, the steering wheel diameter has been reduced. Analog devices have sunk into oblivion, although there are still two “wells” in front of the driver, in which the displays are hidden. The media system is included in the basic package, and a 10-inch projection screen is provided for an additional charge. Also, the Yaris can have a heated steering wheel, contour lighting and a panoramic roof. For Japan, swivel front seats have been announced for easier entry and exit.
Toyota is positioning the new Yaris as the safest compact car. Adaptive cruise control, automatic braking and lane keeping systems are already in the basic configuration, and for Europe there is a kind of “central” airbag, although details about it will appear later.