Reviews

2010 Toyota Yaris Introduction

The Toyota Yaris is the lowest priced Toyota and the model that best represents the value of good, basic transportation. But, the Yaris is better than just good. It boasts handsome looks, pleasant road manners, perky performance, and a well-tailored interior. It's a superb subcompact.

Yaris comes in five-door Liftback, three-door Liftback, and four-door Sedan versions. It's the only vehicle in its category to offer buyers three distinct body styles.

All Yaris models are powered through the front wheels by a 1.5-liter engine with an output of 106 horsepower. A five-speed manual transmission is now standard on all models, while a four-speed automatic is optional.

For 2010, Toyota Yaris comes standard with the full Toyota Star Safety System. It gets the full complement of air bags all around. The 2010 Yaris comes with Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) and traction control (TRAC), in addition to its already-standard anti-lock brakes (ABS) with Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD) and Brake Assist.

For 2010, there have been some minor changes. A rear-window defroster is now standard. And remote keyless entry, an engine immobilizer, and 15-inch alloy wheels are now available. Yaris was launched as a 2007; the five-door liftback joined the lineup for 2009.

All Yaris models combine an inexpensive sticker price, outstanding fuel mileage and the solid integrity that underlies every Toyota. While some hybrid-powered vehicles offer superior fuel economy, they're significantly more expensive than the Yaris, so it would require many, many miles at very high fuel prices to balance that equation. When viewed in terms of total ownership costs, the Yaris is one of the least expensive new cars available today. It's an outstanding value.

We've found the Yaris practical and enjoyable to drive. The cabin is roomy, the seats are comfortable and the interior fabrics are quite nice, relative to the price point. Around town, the Yaris excels as a runabout, dashing about wherever you need to go, with agile handling and the sort of responsive performance useful in heavy traffic. It keeps up with freeway traffic well and makes for a good commuter car.

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