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Toyota Yaris PDF Print E-mail

The world’s number two automaker, Japanese giant Toyota, is set to build its award-winning compact, the Yaris, here in Thailand.  Until now the Yaris has been built only in Europe and Japan; the Thai production line is the first in the region and is expected to double Toyota’s current output in the Kingdom to almost 500,000 by 2008 when the expanded manufacturing facility in Chachoengsao becomes fully operational.

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Toyota Yaris

The Yaris, although of modest dimensions, has achieved a remarkable 5-star rating in the influential EuroNCAP crash tests.  The supermini, as it is dubbed by the EuroNCAP authorities, was awarded a massive 35 points for adult protection in the tests, the highest ever achieved by any Toyota.  It also scored well in the child protection category and did relatively well in the pedestrian protection listing.

The Yaris will be available with a choice of three engines, all powered by gasoline (or gasohol), but there are currently no plans to introduce the excellent 1.4 liter diesel which is available throughout Europe. The Thai-produced Yaris will feature a three-cylinder 1.0 liter producing a modest 68 bhp (51 kW) and 93 Nm of torque, and a 1.3 delivering 85 bhp (64 kW) and 121 Nm. A 1.5 version is also planned. All engines feature variable valve technology, while they will be available with constantly variable transmission as an option, which will radically improve fuel consumption and produce lower emissions.  A 5-speed manual transmission, however, is standard.

The first Yaris appeared in 1999 and was almost instantly awarded the accolade ‘European Car of the Year’; it also became Japan’s Car of the Year, making it the first model to achieve this global recognition.  It has also been named as one of the most reliable cars by an influential German survey.

The interior is surprisingly roomy for a car this size and is extremely well equiped. A CD player is standard while the Yaris is also the first compact to receive Toyota’s new sound system which is MP3 compatible as well as able to handle Windows Media Audio (WMA).  In addition the digital audio tuner reduces interference on AM/FM channels.

A new rear suspension design intrudes less into the trunk, while the rear seats split 60:40 and will slide and recline independently.  They can also be folded flat to increase luggage space which, says Toyota, is the largest in its class. 

Clever design of the front overhang and windshield position has also increased the interior space of the Yaris which is close to many larger vehicles.  In addition, Toyota has carefully designed the passenger compartment to incorporate deformable safety structures, in order to dissipate crash energy, whether generated from the front, rear or side.  Noise and vibration have been reduced by the adoption of double sealing on all side doors.

Wind noise is far lower than is normal in this class of car, thanks to a low drag coefficient of 0.30 which, says the manufacturer, is the result of more than 1,000 hours in the wind tunnel.

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Toyota Yaris

Back to the safety angle, the Yaris offers Brake Assist across the range, a system that detects emergency braking and increases line pressure in conjunction with the ABS; it is a proven fact that most drivers to not brake sufficiently hard in a potential impact situation.  Large disc brakes all round are standard on the larger engined models, with rear drums fitted to the 1.0 liter, while the parking brake is integral at the rear, significantly reducing unsprung weight. Dual front airbags and side bags are standard, with side air curtains optional.

The Yaris may be small in overall dimensions, but it is superbly equiped and when the Thai versions come on stream, it should be available at quite a reasonable price.

 

Check out your car for safety at www.euroncap.com

 

 
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© 2018 Jeff Heselwood. All rights reserved.
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