Drivers who use cars mainly in cities are increasingly turning to SUVs, choosing compact, agile and economical models adapted to the conditions of the urban environment. The growing problem of smog means that its low emissions are becoming an increasingly important factor to consider when choosing a car. At the same time, drivers expect cars with an elegant, distinctive design and practical solutions that facilitate an active lifestyle. The Yaris Cross Hybrid, a completely new model in the Toyota lineup, was designed to meet these expectations.
Toyota Yaris Cross
The design and styling of the new Yaris Cross was created in Europe with the markets of the Old Continent in mind. The car meets the expectations of European drivers interested in the increasingly popular B-SUV segment. It will be built at Toyota Motor Manufacturing France (TMMF) alongside the next generation Yaris. The first copies will arrive in showrooms in 2021.
Thoroughbred hybrid, thoroughbred SUV
The concept of the new Yaris Cross rests on three pillars - Toyota's extensive experience in the field of hybrid drives and the design of modern city cars and SUVs.
Toyota was the first to introduce hybrid technology to the B segment when the Yaris Hybrid debuted in 2012. This experience makes the 4th generation hybrid-powered Yaris Cross a vehicle with excellent performance and extremely low fuel consumption. The new SUV is based on the GA-B platform from the TNGA (Toyota New Global Architecture) series. Thanks to the new floor plate and innovative solutions, the car has a compact design and a spacious interior.
The Yaris Cross is a classic SUV that draws on Toyota's 25 years of experience in this type of vehicle. The first ever self-supporting SUV, the Toyota RAV4 is by far the most popular vehicle in the segment in the world and one of the most frequently purchased vehicles. A few years ago, the Toyota C-HR joined with bold styling and efficient handling. The new Yaris Cross will offer Toyota a full line of SUVs in the B, C and D segments.
New hybrid drive
Yaris Cross takes full advantage of the 4th generation hybrid drive. In 2012, Toyota was the first to introduce hybrid technology in the B segment. The Yaris Hybrid achieved impressive market success, becoming one of the most popular hybrids in Europe. Since launch, sales of the Yaris hybrid in the region have exceeded half a million units. Toyota's fuel-efficient urban hatchback has been instrumental in raising awareness of the benefits of hybrid technology and promoting it to a wide range of drivers.
The new Yaris and Yaris Cross use Toyota's latest hybrid technology. Their 1.5-engine hybrid drive is a downsized version of the 2.0 and 2.5 engine-based systems used in the new Corolla, RAV4, Camry and Toyota C-HR models. It is based on a 1.5-litre 3-cylinder Atkinson cycle gasoline engine, precisely engineered to reduce friction and mechanical energy losses and optimize combustion speed. The engine achieves high torque even at low speeds and very low fuel consumption. The thermal efficiency of the unit is 40%, higher than comparable diesel engines. This ensures high driving efficiency and low CO2 emissions.
The new Yaris Cross has 116 horsepower. In the front axle version, it emits less than 90 g/km CO2*, while the model equipped with the intelligent 4x4 (AWD-i) emits less than 100 g/km CO2*. Engineers paid special attention to power distribution, making the drive very flexible.
* Data according to Correlated NEDC. WLTP cycle results are even below 120g/km for the FWD version and below 135g/km for the AWD-i version. The vehicle is in the process of being homologated, so final CO2 emissions figures may vary slightly.
The Yaris Cross is based on the new GA-B platform, as is its sister city hatchback, the Toyota Yaris. The TNGA architecture provides a high level of body rigidity and a well-balanced structure for very good driving performance.
The perfect SUV for the city
Despite its small size, the Yaris Cross is a thoroughbred SUV with a high driving position and a spacious, practical interior. Its compact silhouette makes it easy to navigate narrow city streets. A car with raised suspension, big wheels and tires, and chunky SUV styling.
The wheelbase is the same as the new Yaris (2560 mm), but the body has been widened by 20 mm and lengthened by 240 mm. The front overhang is 60mm longer and the rear overhang is 180mm longer than the hatchback. Ground clearance has been increased by 30mm and vehicle height has increased by 90mm.
Spacious and practical
As befits an SUV, the Yaris Cross is spacious and practical. The power-opening tailgate makes it easy to load luggage into the back of the car when your hands are full. The sliding double floor in the trunk either creates a secure compartment on the bottom or allows you to pack bulky items in the car. In addition, the trunk floor covering is two-piece, so you can get both storage space and more space for your belongings. The luggage compartment also has flexible cables for securing items.
With the rear seat unfolded and the sunshade deployed, there's plenty of storage space in the trunk. The backs of the sofa fold in proportions of 40:20:40, which gives a wide choice of luggage configuration depending on the number and number of passengers.
Intelligent Drive AWD-i
One of the features that define the Yaris Cross as a classic SUV is the availability of all-wheel drive, implemented by the intelligent AWD-i system. This is the first such solution in this segment. AWD-i complements the hybrid drive with an additional electric motor on the rear axle. Their interaction provides exceptional traction and stability in difficult conditions, on slippery surfaces or on loose ground. The AWD-i electrical system is smaller and lighter than a mechanical 4×4, so the Yaris Cross Hybrid AWD-i consumes less fuel and emits less CO2 than any other all-wheel drive B-SUV.
The AWD-i system drives the rear axle when starting off and accelerating. Drive to the front axle of the Yaris Cross when driving is standard, but on slippery or soft ground, the auxiliary rear engine automatically engages. For example, in rain, snow and ice or on sandy roads.
Advanced driver assistance systems
At the heart of the Yarisa Cross' high level of safety is the GA-B platform, which provides exceptional body rigidity. The vehicle's design and advanced safety systems mean the new model meets the highest standards of independent crash test organizations.
The vehicle is equipped with Toyota Safety Sense active safety systems and advanced driver support features that help prevent collisions in various driving situations by providing early warning to the driver and automatic intervention of the braking and steering systems in the event of a risk of an accident. .
The body design of the Yarisa Cross was developed by a large team of specialists from Europe and Japan. Lance Scott, general manager of design at Toyota ED2 studio in Nice, France, talks about the design process for the new SUV:
“When we started designing the vehicle, it was clear to us that while looks are the most important factor in B-SUV buyers' buying decisions, the vehicle's practicality is also paramount. These things are not easy to come to terms with, especially in the case of a car of such compact dimensions.
From the very beginning we have been working with European riders, so we needed to understand them better. We began to communicate with clients to find out their lifestyle, preferences, daily activities and ways to spend their free time. Having completed this very enjoyable task, which allowed us to learn a lot, we enthusiastically returned to the design studio to create a car that would reflect the personalities of our interlocutors. We wanted to give them an exciting combination of sophistication and spontaneity.
We focused on two keywords: energetic and minimalist. In our opinion, they best reflected the combination of the agility of a compact car with the strength and stability of an SUV.
When drawing the first sketches of the body, a diamond shape quickly came to mind. Then came the idea for the slogan "Nimble Diamond", which evokes strong, hard and luxurious gem combined with an agile, fun-to-drive car that we had to develop.
On top, we gave the body of the Yaris Cross a diamond shape, which allowed us to strongly define the wings. The result is an energetic form that is both strong and refined.
To give the car a distinctive SUV silhouette, we raised the ground clearance and designed the car to look stable and confident on the road, aided by large, angular fenders and, of course, large wheels - even 18-inch ones.
The design of the façade was of paramount importance to us. We wanted it to match the DNA of Toyota SUVs, but at the same time have its own individual character.
At the rear, we also made the car more stable, helped by wide wheel arches. The vertically stacked taillights and rear window are very similar to the Yaris, but the wider, squarer tailgate suggests there's more boot space than an urban hatchback.
When choosing a range of body colors, we were looking for a paint that would express the active character of the car and its high quality. Among the latest trends, we see a growing interest in gold and other precious metals, but we needed more natural shades suitable for urban style. By adding a subtle hint of green to the gold and reducing its saturation so that the paintwork does not resemble metal, we have created a fresh, bright color in an urban style that emphasizes the lines of the exterior. We called the effect of these procedures Brass Gold.”
Toyota plans to produce more than 150,000 units of the Yaris Cross a year and expects the new model to take at least 8% of the subcompact SUV market. The car will be built at the TMMF plant in Valenciennes, France.