Toyota has given the Yaris Hatchback a mid-cycle makeover for the 2015 model year. Now filled with fresh details, this dependable subcompact shines.
2015 Toyota Yaris Hatchback SE is the top of the line trim level for the car, which is a Canadian favourite. For 2015, it's received improvements to it's suspension, steering and handling, as well as new standard features, and increased content.
“No stripped-down subcompacts here” was how a press release from Toyota began. The Yaris Hatchback is looking to reclaim it's market share in Canada, which has recently been trod upon by the likes of the $9.98 Nissan Micra and super cheap Mitsubishi Mirage. Little cars are popular in Canada, especially in the province of Quebec where 65 percent of Canadian Yaris' are sold, and so the market is surprisingly competitive. Toyota, preferring to compete on quality rather than price, is hoping to bypass the price wars by offering significant levels of quality and content, for a higher, though reasonable, price.
One interesting new feature on the Yaris is a unique, single-bladed wiper system. Also added for 2015 is a 6.1-inch Display Audio System.
Inside, textures are softer touch, with an improvement in it's trim pieces. It's third-generation ergonomics have moved the instrumentation back to a better, driver-oriented layout. The rear seat folds down in a 60/40 configuration, and the rear hatch opens to create 286 litres of cargo space. Helpful gadgets include USB inputs, and power windows and locks now come standard.
Under the Yaris' hood lies Toyota’s 1NZ-FE 1.5-litre DOHC 4-cylinder with VVTi, which delivers 106 horses and 103 lb-ft of torque. Not bad at all for a city car. It arrives standard with a 5-speed manual or for an extra $1,000, a 4-speed automatic is available. The four-speed automatic gets decent fuel economy too- 7.8/6.6L/100 km (city/highway).
A slight hint of Europe is evident in the styling, and the Yaris has new bumpers, tail lights and a brand new gape-mouth grille. It actually looks a little bit aggressive, considering it's such a little car.
The 2015 Toyota Yaris Hatchback SE is also stronger. Based on Toyota's "B" car platform, 36 more welding spots and reinforcements have been added to improve the platform's rigidity. Noise, vibration and harshness have been reduced, the suspension tweaked and aerodynamics improved. For those opting for the highest trim level, there is an upgraded steering package available.
As you would expect from Toyota, the Yaris is still a practical car. It is devoid of cuteness or eccentricities, like you might find in a Mini or Fiat.
While it's not a sub-$10,000 car, the 2015 Toyota Yaris Hatchback offers significantly more value than it's competition. Pricing has remained similar to 2014 numbers, and the top of the line SE model has actually dropped by $1,590. A sedan model is no longer offered, but it is still available in a 3-door CE starting at $14,545, 5-door LE and the 5-door SE listing for $18,655 with optional automatic.
By Linda Aylesworth - autoExpert.ca