Toyota Yaris Hybrid Motoring Articles Savista Over 50’s Magazine March 2014

27 Апр 2014 | Author: | Комментарии к записи Toyota Yaris Hybrid Motoring Articles Savista Over 50’s Magazine March 2014 отключены
TOYOTA Yaris Hybrid

Toyota Yaris Hybrid

A compact five-door hatchback designed primarily for urban use and short journeys, Yaris has always been an efficient small car and this hybridisation adds a distinct new dimension.

Like its hybrid siblings the Prius and Auris, the Yaris uses an Atkinson cycle petrol engine, which has the advantage of no starter motor, alternator or belt drives so saves on weight, parts that can go wrong and servicing costs.

This is combined with a compact transaxle front mounted 45kW electric motor which sits alongside a generator, power split device and double motor reduction mechanism.

To get the Hybrid Synergy Drive system into the French built Yaris Toyota has had to down-size the engine from the previous 1.8 litre to a 1.5 litre with 16 valves and VVTi injection.

The electronic brain switches seamlessly between the electric motor and petrol engine depending on power requirements which are dictated by the application of the throttle pedal and the road conditions

This union is aimed at cutting emissions and reducing fuel consumption and includes a power application readout for when the car is recharging the battery, operating in its most economic mode and when adding power is being delivered.

The engine switches off when stationary and there is an Eco button which restricts the throttle application and reduces the input of the air conditioning system.

If you use a normal driving style, attempting to get from A to B in the quickest time, then the power delivery is rather staccato with surges of acceleration as the system switches from electric to petrol.

Use a more relaxed driving style with a gentle application of the right foot and then things settle down to a gentler and more progressive pace.

If you do this, Yaris Hybrid succeeds in the task of cutting emissions very well as demonstrated by the fact that on completing a 100 mile test drive on a mixture of city and country roads it operated in electric, zero emissions mode for half the time when stopped in traffic, at low speeds in town and when up top speed on open roads.

Toyota claim that Yaris can be driven in electric mode only up to speeds of 31mph with the use of an EV button but the system does not restrict it to the electric motor and it is almost impossible, in normal driving conditions, to accelerate lightly enough to prevent the petrol motor kicking in.

But the system allows Toyota to register a CO2 emissions level of 79g/km which means it is free from the first year road tax.

On the question of fuel economy the case is not so clear cut. Toyota quotes up to 80mpg on the combined cycle but, as has been publicised recently, the official figures are often far from real driving situations.

Even on flat roads I failed to better 65mpg on a mainly low speed test route and this figure hardly seemed to change whether driving conservatively or with aggression.

A good small capacity petrol or diesel engine will exceed this consumption figure so if saving on petrol is your only reason for considering a Yaris then you might want to look elsewhere.

When it comes to performance Yaris Hybrid feels just like any other Yaris with its agile handling and tight turning circle but ultimately, is no ball of fire despite having a total power output of 98bhp which is good for a car in this class.

It has the advantage of instant maximum torque from the electric motor the moment you touch the accelerator, which means it is brisk from a standing start and gets off the line better than a manual transmission small car.

But when the petrol kicks in, a distinctly audible occurrence, then things slow down for a while and you won’t better 12 seconds to 62mph.

Press the throttle harder and with the compact CVT automatic transmission the engine starts to scream its head off with none of the usual reduction in engine revs you would get from a manual transmission.

Yaris is currently Toyota’s best selling model and they obviously didn’t want to change much to accommodate the new hybrid system so there are few modifications to the third generation model that was only launched less than a year ago

Externally the front has been extended by 20mm and the aerodynamics improved with more aggressive front end treatment featuring a larger lower grille and slimmer upper grille and slim headlights with LED daytime running lights.

Elsewhere it is as before, a small car with a large cabin into which five adults can just about fit. Boot space, which has never been especially huge, remains the same at 286 litres because the battery pack — a nickel-metal hydride unit reduced to 120 cells to save on weight and volume — and fuel tank are accommodated under the rear seats.

FACTFILE: Toyota Yaris Hybrid T4

TOYOTA Yaris Hybrid

Price: £15,895

Engine: 1497cc / 73bhp petrol engine and 45kW electric motor

Top Speed: 103mph

0-62mph: 11.8 seconds

Fuel Consumption: 80.7mpg Combined

Emissions: 79 g/k

Insurance: n/a

While the exterior works well and has a contemporary, youthful appearance, the interior is a major let-down and could do with a serious make-over, The harsh, miss-matched, combination of texture plastics is dated and unforgiving and the instrumentation and controls randomly placed with a lack of character.

Yaris hybrid is offered in three trim levels with all getting items such as dual zone air conditioning, six speaker audio, ABS with EBD and switchable traction control.

The best selling T4 grade includes 15 inch alloy wheels rear privacy glass, front fog lamps, Toyota Touch audio control, Bluetooth connection, rear view parking camera and a leather steering wheel.

In dealerships from July, Yaris Hybrid is priced from £14,995 which is around £1,500 more than the equivalent petrol only Yaris and comes with a five year warranty and eight year warranty on the battery pack. Some of this initial cost will be off-set by the saving on road tax and for business users BIK tax but you are still going to be paying a small premium for hybrid technology.

If you are in the market for a cheap to run, nippy, fuel efficient city run-around with the flexibility to do well on longer journeys then the Yaris Hybrid is probably not your cup of tea.

However, if you do mainly urban journeys at low speeds and performance is not essential and you want a warm glow inside for doing your bit for the environment then Yaris Hybrid might just be the car for you.

TOYOTA Yaris Hybrid
TOYOTA Yaris Hybrid
TOYOTA Yaris Hybrid
TOYOTA Yaris Hybrid
TOYOTA Yaris Hybrid
TOYOTA Yaris Hybrid
TOYOTA Yaris Hybrid

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