- Safe and reliable
- Better to drive than rivals
- Roomy interior
- Noisy engines
- Rivals are more fun to drive
- Interior feels cheap in places
What's the Toyota Yaris like?
Toyota has stood out in the reliability stakes ever since it was launched, and this long-lasting strength extends right through the range and down to the Yaris supermini.
The model built between 2011 and 2020 had a 9-year run, and it's agile, very safe, and fun to drive, with good handling and excellent roadholding plus a better ride than some other small cars.
Petrol engines are a 1.0-litre with 68bhp, a 1.3-litre with 99bhp, a 1.5-litre with 109bhp, and a 1.5-litre petrol/electric hybrid with 98bhp.
The 1.0-litre gets from 0 to 60mph in 14.8 seconds and is capable of an excellent 58mpg, while the 1.3-litre covers the benchmark sprint in 11.3 seconds and could manage 52mpg.
The 1.5-litre replaced the 1.3-litre, and has an extra 10bhp. It covers the sprint in 10.6 seconds and at very best will do 47mpg, while later hybrids take 11.4 seconds for the sprint and are rated at 80mpg – with very low emissions and no road tax.
A 1.4-litre diesel with 90bhp was also available until 2017, but it was dropped from the line-up in favour of the hybrid models increasingly espoused by Toyota. At the same time, the 3-door model disappeared because it sold in far fewer numbers than the 5-door.
The hybrid models use the same drive system as the Prius, so they drive the front wheels through a CVT continuously variable automatic gearbox.
However, the cheaper petrol and diesel models have a better ride because of the extra weight of the hybrid’s batteries.
The diesel is very economical too, and capable of over 60mpg, but even the 1.0-litre petrol can do 52mpg, and of course, it's much more numerous used and cheaper to buy and insure.
Despite a slow 0 to 60mph time, the smallest engine doesn’t feel particularly slow, with a peppy, free revving nature when pushed, whereas the 1.5-litre can sound harsh if pressed for higher revs. Also, the 1.0-litre is quite capable of longer journeys in good comfort.
The Yaris is one of the safest cars in the supermini class thanks to standard driver, passenger, side, curtain, and driver’s knee airbags.
It also has stability control and anti-lock brakes that combine with emergency brake assist to apply full pressure on the brakes in critical conditions.
Standard from the 2017 facelift and optional before is the Toyota Safety Sense package, which brings automatic dipping headlights, traffic sign recognition, lane-departure warning, and a collision prevention system with automatic emergency braking.
There's a bewildering range of models and special editions to choose from, so make sure you get all the kit you want.
All have audio remote control, height adjust driver’s seat, height adjust steering, lumbar support, front electric windows, remote locking, and traction control. Mid-range Sport models also have alloys, electric mirrors, and parking sensors.
Find your Toyota Yaris your way with CarStore
The Toyota Yaris stands out as a front-runner in its supermini class thanks to its spacious interior and 5-door practicality. If it's dependability you're after, extra safety features like the Toyota Safety Sense package are standard on all Yaris models to give drivers extra peace of mind whilst out on the road.