The new Toyota Yaris Cross!
The new Toyota Yaris Cross!

Toyota has revealed the first images of a new compact SUV that will slot in below the C-HR and RAV4 in the Toyota SUV range. In an online presentation to international media, the new Toyota Yaris Cross received its world premiere. The event had originally been planned for the 2020 Geneva Motor Show, which was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The new Toyota Yaris Cross is a spin-off of the popular Yaris supermini. It will enter a new segment for Toyota, the popular B-SUV segment alongside the likes of the Volkswagen T-Cross, Nissan Juke and Renault Captur. A source from Toyota Ireland has confirmed that it will be sold exclusively as a hybrid when it arrives in Ireland in 2021. The brand are confident that it will “strike a chord with savvy Irish buyers who want an environmentally-friendly car without sacrificing performance”.

What’s so special about the Toyota Yaris Cross?

The new small Yaris SUV is the latest model to debut on Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA) and has been designed and engineered in Europe. It will be manufactured in France. Built on Toyota’s new GA-B vehicle platform, the brand claims a high level of body rigidity and a well-balanced chassis will make the car responsive and agile.

In what is unusual in the B-segment, all wheel drive is also available, making the new Yaris Cross “a genuine SUV”. A raised ride height and plastic cladding reinforce its SUV character. The design has clearly been inspired by the new generation RAV4 that was launched in Ireland in 2019. Wheel size of up to 18″ will fit in those large squared off wheel arches. Yaris Cross has the same 2,560 mm wheelbase as the new Yaris hatchback, but is 240 mm longer overall, with 60 mm added to the front overhang and 180 mm to the rear, securing more interior space. The ground clearance is 30 mm higher and the vehicle is taller and wider overall – by 90 and 20 mm respectively.

Features include an electric tailgate and an adjustable deck height to give the flexibility of either a secure underfloor compartment or increased boot space for larger loads. The deck board itself can be split in two, giving customers both increased space and an underfloor storage area. A new flex belt system can be added to help secure items while driving. The boot volume will be 390 litres.

Inside the Yaris Cross
Inside the Yaris Cross

Toyota’s new hybrid small SUV!

The new Toyota Yaris Cross will use the fourth generation of Toyota’s hybrid technology. This is not the first time the brand has created a small hybrid, as the Yaris debuted this technology in 2012. Since then, more than half a million have been sold in Europe. Along with the new Yaris supermini due in Ireland before the end of 2020, the new Yaris crossover debuts Toyota’s latest 1.5-litre petrol electric hybrid system.

This new powertrain has been derived from the larger 2.0 and 2.5-litre powertrains in the Corolla, C-HR, RAV4 and Camry. It uses a new 1.5-litre, three-cylinder Atkinson-cycle petrol engine, precision-engineered to reduce friction and mechanical losses and optimise combustion speed. The result is high torque at low engine speeds and claimed excellent fuel efficiency. The engine’s thermal efficiency is rated at 40%, which we are told is greater than comparable diesel engines and ensures strong fuel economy and low CO2 emissions. Power will be output at 116 hp, with special attention given by engineers to power delivery, making the system very responsive to drive.

Anything else?

The new Toyota Yaris Cross is already claiming best in class fuel efficiency and emissions when it goes on sale in 2021. Toyota says the front-wheel drive model starts from below 90 g/km CO2 and the AWD-i version from below 100 g/km.

Toyota Safety Sense active safety systems and advanced driver assistance functions will also feature, helping to avoid a wide range of common accident risks through driver information, early warnings and, when necessary, automatic braking and steering intervention.

The launch colour is Brass Gold.

Commenting on the launch of the new Yaris Cross, Steve Tormey, Chief Executive of Toyota Ireland commented: 

We are delighted to announce the launch of the new Yaris Cross. This is a vibrant and stylish new model to add to the range, and it will suit our customers who are sophisticated and energetic. It combines small car design with SUV engineering, and with our rich heritage in SUV cars customers can expect practicality delivered with comfort and style. We are launching the Yaris Cross exclusively as a self-charging hybrid and it will have the latest and most efficient hybrid technology. So customers can benefit from lower NOX and CO2 emissions with excellent fuel efficiency. It’s another example of “no more boring cars” from Toyota and we are looking forward to the arrival of this car in the second half of 2021.”

Adding Yaris Cross to the line-up will give Toyota an SUV range that spans the B, C and D segments. The Toyota C-HR has been a great success in Ireland, while the RAV4 remains popular in the large SUV segment. The Corolla is still the bestselling Toyota in Ireland, now available as a hatchback, saloon and estate. In fact it’s Ireland’s bestselling car. The Yaris remains popular in the supermini segment and should be bolstered by the arrival of an all-new generation Yaris Hybrid before the end of the year. Expect the Yaris Cross to mount a serious challenge in the B-SUV segment in 2021.

The Yaris Cross is due in Ireland in the second half of 2021
The Yaris Cross is due in Ireland in the second half of 2021