Toyota iQ 1.33

Is baby better with new engine and stop-start?

Overall Auto Express Rating

3.0 out of 5

The addition of a new four-cylinder engine makes the iQ feel more grown-up and refined. It allows this smart little car to move clear of the stiff and good-value competition from Toyota’s own Aygo. Unfortunately, that means the iQ starts to be compared with larger rivals – and while the cute looks and technological zing make it attractive, the price could put buyers off.

Although it’s only been on sale for a few months, Toyota has set about improving the iQ!

From July, the neat little city car will be available with a larger 1.33-litre engine – and it will also get stop-start. It’s pricey, though, costing an extra £1,000 in six-speed manual form. That takes the iQ 1.33 to £11,495 – or as much as Ford’s entry-level Fiesta.

Delivering 99bhp, the 1.33 promises to do 0-62mph in 13.4 seconds and return 58.9mpg combined. Plus, the new engine adds some welcome refinement to the driving experience.

On motorways, sixth gear keeps the revs down and boosts economy. Come to a halt in town, and the stop-start works like rival set-ups to boost mpg, cutting power as you select neutral. Restarting is fast, if clunky.

With an extra 80kg to carry, the 1.33 model feels ponderous compared to the 1.0-litre, and is slower to turn in to corners and less fun. Standard 16-inch alloy wheels also hamper the ride.

Inside, the 1.33 retains the clever and stylish cabin design, with nifty fold-down seats and a fabric glovebox. And with nine airbags as standard, as well as stability and traction control, the iQ remains one of the safest cars in its class.

Rival: Citroen C1 It’s not as clever or well kitted out as the iQ, but the C1 offers mega economy – and we can’t look past its £7,945 price tag!

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