Toyota bZ4X review
The Toyota bZ4X is a capable, all-electric family car that impresses across the board, although some will find it expensive to buy
The Toyota bZ4X is the Japanese manufacturer's first all-electric car, and can hang with the best electric family SUVs out there. Its ride delivers effortless levels of comfort, while keen drivers will appreciate the bZ4X’s dynamic prowess and its ability to deliver a surprising amount of fun on the road.
It’s not the cheapest family EV available, and nor does it offer the same range as the class leaders, but the bZ4X is well equipped and has a premium feel to its cabin, with enough practical touches and on-board tech to compete with close rivals. A smart and sophisticated exterior look adds to its appeal, while Toyota’s reassuring warranty package – which could potentially last up to 10 years – might just be the icing on the cake that wins customers over.
About the Toyota bZ4X
A quick rewind back to the nineties finds Toyota leading the way in hybrid technology with the launch of its Prius, firstly as a saloon in the Japanese domestic market and later in the UK as a hatchback model from around mid-2000. It was the first mass-produced car to use a hybrid powertrain, with a focus on delivering improved fuel economy and lower CO2 emissions compared with its pure-petrol and diesel rivals.
Nowadays you’ll notice almost every model in Toyota range features hybrid technology, from the Yaris supermini to the Highlander seven-seater SUV. But for a brand that’s embraced electrification with such gusto, it was a little surprising that Toyota left it until 2022 to deliver its first all-electric car, the snappily named bZ4X.
Toyota has promised there will eventually be an entire family of electric bZ (beyond Zero) models in its showrooms, with the number in the name indicating the size of the car. So, with the 4 being a mid-size SUV (as the X represents), it leaves the door open for a variety of EVs, though the bZ4X is still just a party of one for now.
The bZ4X enters the all-electric family SUV market at a busy time, with a host of high-quality alternatives for buyers to choose from. The Hyundai Ioniq 5 and Kia EV6 are fantastic options, with the former offering a more relaxed, practical character and the latter a focused, sportier drive and sleeker looks. Our 2022 Car of the Year, the Nissan Ariya, which we’d recommend for its all-round ability, will also be on most buyers’ shortlists, along with the Skoda Enyaq iV, Volkswagen ID.4, Tesla Model Y and Ford Mustang Mach-E.
Every bZ4X is powered by a 75kWh battery, 71kWh of which is usable, and allows for a maximum range of 271 miles if you get the 201bhp front-wheel drive model. However, that figure shrinks to 255 miles if you get the 215bhp all-wheel drive version, which features two electric motors, one on each axle. For context, all of the bZ4X’s rivals we list above boast official ranges of well over 300 miles.
There are also three core trim levels to choose from: Pure, Motion and Vision, with a Premiere Edition also available for a brief time when the bZ4X first arrived. Standard kit is decent, with every model featuring a seven-inch digital instrument panel, heat pump, 18-inch alloy wheels, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone connectivity, plus a host of safety systems. But the sweet spot is arguably the Motion specification, which includes niceties such as privacy glass, a panoramic glass roof, heated front seats and a bigger 12.3-inch infotainment touchscreen, opposed to the base model’s eight-inch display. Prices currently start from over £46,000, rising to beyond £54,000 for the top-spec model.
For an alternative review of the Toyota bZ4X, visit our sister site drivingelectric.com...
In this review
- 1Verdict - currently readingThe Toyota bZ4X is a capable, all-electric family car that impresses across the board, although some will find it expensive to buy
- 2Electric motor, drive and performanceThe bZ4X offers decent driving dynamics and just enough power to keep things interesting
- 3Range, charging and running costsRapid charging ability is a welcome feature, but insurance costs are likely to be expensive
- 4Interior, design and technologyA stylish exterior design and a high-quality feel to the cabin should help the bZ4x win over buyers
- 5Practicality, comfort and boot spacePracticality is a mixed bag for the bZ4X; boot space is adequate, but rear passenger space could be better
- 6Reliability and safetyThe bZ4X offers impressive levels of safety and a reassuring warranty package