Performance – Toyota is offering the Yaris with only 1 engine which is a 1.5-litre unit producing 107 PS of power and 140 Nm of torque. The numbers might sound decent on paper but performance is something else only. The engine feels very strained at speeds above the ton and doesn’t have a lively or peppy feel at all. Low-end is good while the mid-range is just about average. The engine isn’t rev happy and also gets very noisy after 3500 RPM. Performance isn’t exciting and this car is meant to be driven sedately.
The 7-step CVT-i gearbox gets a manual mode and paddle-shifters too
The petrol engine is offered with either a 6-speed manual gearbox or a 7-step CVT-i transmission. The manual gearbox is a bit notchy with its shifts while the clutch is very light. The CVT-i is the same one as the Corolla Altis and the rubberband effect isn’t very bad on this one. It revs all the way to the 6200 RPM when you mash the throttle. Otherwise, cruising RPMs are fairly low and the Yaris does 100 km/hr at a relaxed 2100 RPM. Paddle-shifters are also offered but only on the VX trim. In terms of fuel efficiency, a realistic figure of 10 km/l can be expected from the CVT variants while on empty highways expect it to go up by another 2-3 km/l.
Driving Dynamics – The suspension has been tuned very nicely for our roads and ride quality is splendid. It feels very plush and the Yaris just eats potholes, even the sharp ones, very easily and passengers feel very comfortable. At low and high speeds alike, the ride remains stable and this is definitely one of the USPs of the sedan. Handling is also pretty decent but the steering feels lifeless without any feedback and even on the highways, it doesn’t weigh up as we would like it to. Composure at high speeds is also good and braking performance is excellent with the pedal having a sharp bite.