Toyota Yaris review - Interior, design and technology

The Yaris features striking good looks and decent levels of standard equipment, although the bleak interior doesn’t inspire.

Overall Auto Express Rating

4.0 out of 5

Interior, design and technology Rating

3.9 out of 5

  • Great economy
  • Good looks
  • Entry-level models well-equipped
  • Not as spacious as rivals
  • Noisy CVT transmission
  • Firm suspension

Toyota has bestowed the Yaris with a strong, distinctive look. The muscular wheel arches, large grille and sharp creases all contribute to a more purposeful stance than on the previous model, and an appearance which translates well to the beefed-up Yaris GR performance model.

Inside the cabin it’s a different matter. The interior design is typically Toyota - solid and practical, but with very little sparkle or sense of style. The fascia is enveloped in gloomy, black plastic, with just a few metal-effect accents on show to improve the mood.

On the plus side, there is a good level of standard equipment on offer. The entry-level Icon trim includes 16-inch alloy wheels, automatic headlights and wipers, adaptive cruise control, air conditioning, a reversing camera and a multi-function leather-trimmed steering wheel. 

Stepping up to the Design versions adds bigger 17-inch wheels, rear privacy glass, power-folding mirrors and keyless entry, while at the top end of the range, the Dynamic and Excel cars feature unique alloy wheel styles, climate control and enhanced safety kit. A head-up display system is offered with the Yaris Launch Edition.

Sat-nav, stereo and infotainment

The Yaris has a half-decent infotainment system, mounted high on the dash where it’s easy to use. Any Toyota owner will recognise the familiar switchgear, but it’s all solid and functional.

Base versions feature a 7.0-inch touch screen with Bluetooth, a DAB radio and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity. Design-spec cars include a larger 8.0-inch display and moving further up the range sees the addition of a JBL premium audio system with eight speakers.

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