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In-depth reviews

Toyota Aygo X review - Engines, performance and drive

The Aygo X is easy to drive around town, but it lacks the refinement offered by its closest rivals

Overall Auto Express Rating

3.5 out of 5

Engines, performance and drive Rating

3.5 out of 5

Price
£16,115 to £21,525
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Rather than using a hybrid powertrain like the Yaris supermini which uses the same platform, the Aygo X relies on a simple 1.0-litre three-cylinder petrol engine paired with either a five-speed manual or a continuously variable transmission (CVT). That engine produces just 71bhp and 93Nm of torque, though considering the size and weight of the dinky city car (under one tonne), it’s ample.

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On the road, the Aygo X doesn’t quite live up to the promise that we’d hoped for given its close relationship with the Yaris. There’s no denying the Aygo X feels light and agile, as a small city car should, and it’s quite fun to drive in the crowded areas it was designed for. We like the well-weighted steering which is light enough to make the car easy to park, but not light enough for it to feel nervous at higher speeds.

However, those funky-looking wheels harm the ride comfort. The Aygo X is offered with 17 and 18-inch alloys, which are large for a car in this segment, and make the car feel quite bouncy and unsettled across surfaces where rivals like the Hyundai i10 or Volkswagen up! do a more impressive job of smoothing bumps out.

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Then there’s the openable canvas roof option. We experienced it when we drove the Aygo X Air Edition, and found it allowed too exterior noise to infiltrate the cabin when closed. You get used to it after a while, but at first, we found ourselves double-checking a window wasn’t open or a door ajar. With the roof electronically rolled back (this takes just under 10 seconds) you won’t notice too much buffeting, although the two forward-facing air vents did very little to keep the cabin warm on the frosty December day when we drove the car. 

0-62mph acceleration and top speed 

The Aygo X takes 14.9 seconds to ‘sprint’ from 0-62mph, while its top speed is 98mph. Other than battery-electric models, we wouldn’t expect a small city car to deliver breathtaking straight-line speed, but even so the Aygo X feels particularly lethargic as a result of its long gearing. It can hit 60mph in second gear, and first feels long, too, so you need lots of revs and to slip the clutch to move off without stalling. However, fifth gear is quite short, so the engine is busier and noisier than its rivals on the motorway.

When it’s idling, the Aygo X’s 1.0-litre three-pot motor produces a pronounced vibration that shakes through the cabin. This calms down with more revs, but there are smoother, more refined options in this segment.

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