What is it?
This is the Yaris Hybrid from Toyota – the world’s first hybrid supermini. It’s been around since June 2012 and has been tweaked a couple of times since then. The most recent update was earlier this year, and it introduced a number of styling upgrades, including fancier front and rear lights and Toyota’s more aggressive grille from the Aygo, aimed at attracting youths to the brand.
Despite the hype around electrified cars, your options are still rather limited when it comes to eco-friendly options, and despite having been around for five years, the Yaris still has the hybrid supermini end of the market to itself.
The prevalence of minicab Priuses has rather blunted the appeal of the larger hybrid from the Toyota range, but the Yaris is refreshingly unsullied by such associations. Does it scream its green credentials enough? That point is arguable, but certainly our White Bi-tone-specification car stands out from the Yaris crowd enough with its chrome styling accents and blue Toyota badge highlights that are specific to the hybrid, as well as the black contrasting roof, spoiler and rear privacy glass that come with the trim.
Thanks to the solid standard specification, the 7-inch touchscreen infotainment system with satnav is the only cost option fitted to our car – although at £20,145 you can argue that it already starts on the back foot. Our Suzuki Ignis long-termer, while not as efficient, is more practical and comes with four-wheel drive for some £5k less, for a start.
Our car: Toyota Yaris Hybrid 1.5 VVT-i Hybrid CVT White Bi-tone
|Est. PCP finance||£297.81 per month (£3,119 deposit, 10,000 miles per year)|
|Options on test car||Toyota Touch 2 with Go navigation – £650|
|Price as tested||£20,795|
|Warranty||Five years/100,000 miles|
|Servicing intervals||12 months/10,000 miles|
What we want to find out
With diesel under pressure, it means that efficient petrols and hybrid cars are going to need to step up in terms of sheer value for money. Is the Yaris Hybrid really that good on fuel? Even then it’s got something of a price premium to overcome – our car costs £20,145, which is serious cash for a supermini.
Not only that, but is the future easy to get on with? The technology might be complicated, but hopefully the experience of driving and living with the Yaris Hybrid isn’t. There’s already an interesting difference in enthusiasm that crops up between motoring journalists and friends who aren’t in the industry. The former aren’t too excited by the Yaris, whereas lots of the latter are intrigued by the space-age tech and gliding about in electric-only mode.
We’ll be delivering regular updates on our Yaris Hybrid. There are lots of ways to keep up to date – subscribe to our Youtube channel, like our Facebook page, follow us on Twitter or sign up to our newsletter. Either way, we’ll keep you posted on how we’re getting on.
For an introduction to the Yaris Hybrid you can read our first drive review from when we first sampled the car earlier in 2017, as well as our full review of the Yaris range.
Gallery: 2017 Yaris Hybrid long-term test car
Toyota Yaris Hybrid 1.5 VVT-i Hybrid CVT White Bi-tone