Small Car Shoot-Out Heats Up with Updated Toyota Yaris

Subcompact hatchback gets a “new attitude.”

by on Jul.24, 2014

The 2015 Toyota Yaris goes for a more aggressive design to compete in a crowded segment.

There’s a big battle underway in the small car market, and Toyota has rearmed with a new version of the Yaris subcompact.

Coming to market in both three- and five-door hatchback versions, the 2015 Toyota Yaris is the Japanese giant’s newest model to opt for a more aggressive design than Toyota has traditionally been known for, the maker declaring the hatchbacks now have “a new attitude.”

Your Auto News Source!

They’ll need it considering the increasing competition in the small car market from the likes of the recently restyled Nissan Versa and Honda Fit, never mind the domestic small cars that have begun gaining traction in a market long controlled by the Japanese, such as the Chevrolet Sonic and Ford Fiesta.

Toyota began its attitude readjustment earlier this year when it revealed a heavily updated version of its best-selling Camry line, the midsize model getting a much more significant mid-cycle refresh than is normal for the industry. But the Japanese maker is finally taking seriously complaints about its traditionally plain vanilla styling – especially as competitors, including the aggressive Korean Hyundai, use more aggressive exterior design as a key selling point.

(For more on the 2015 Toyota Camry, Click Here.)

The Yaris interior gets some upscale touches.

From the front, in particular, the 2015 Yaris will no longer blend into the wallpaper. It sports a wide-yawning front fascia that stretches from the Toyota badge to the bottom of the bumper. A chrome line sits atop the new grille, stretching from headlamp to headlamp.

Inside the updated subcompact tries to deliver a more upscale appearance – in line with competitors such as the 2015 Honda Fit — with the use of more soft-touch materials, and a new 6.1-inch touchscreen display that becomes standard in the new model. It will handle a variety of the high-tech functions that young, first-time buyers tend to be drawn to, including the HD and satellite radio and optional navigation system – the first time one has been offered on the Yaris.

(Click Here to check out the updated 2015 Nissan Versa.)

The good news is that knobs are still there for key climate control functions.

Power windows and air conditioning now are standard on the base car, while the midrange Yaris LE gets niceties such as cruise control and keyless entry, along with steering wheel-mounted audio controls. Jumping to the top-line SE adds leather wrapping for the steering wheel and shifter, distinctive seat fabric and sportier gauges.

The 2015 Toyota Yaris will be offered in both three- and five-door hatchback body styles.

Power will come from a 1.5-liter inline-four with variable valve timing that makes 106 horsepower and 103 pound-feet of torque. Toyota claims it has a broader torque curve and should deliver what it describes as “snappy driving,” whether paired with the standard 5-speed manual or optional four-speed automatic.

Fuel economy numbers weren’t released, but it’s expected to improve from the already solid 30 mpg City, 37 mpg Highway figures for the outgoing Toyota Yaris.

(Click Here to check out the 2015 Honda Fit redesign.)

The subcompact does see a price increase running in the range of $280 to $490, depending on the model. The base 3-door with manual gearbox starts at $14,845, with the 5-door 2015 Toyota Yaris SE with a four-speed priced at $17,620. Add another $825 for delivery charges

The 2015 Toyota Yaris will officially go on sale in the U.S. on July 27th.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

One Response to “Small Car Shoot-Out Heats Up with Updated Toyota Yaris”

  1. Mark says:

    Good lord, that is a face that will scare small children! They couldn’t make it any uglier.