It turns out the awkward little Toyota Yaris can make for a handsome little crossover, as previewed by the new Yaris Cross. There’s also a healthy dose of Toyota’s new Mirai design language that I can’t be mad at.
One of my favourite impressions of the new 2021 Toyota Mirai hydrogen car was how boxy and upright it stood. It was very stately. And while the nose, grille, and headlights on this new Yaris Cross closely resembles that Mirai design, it doesn’t have the same impression. But it ain’t bad! The strong forward edge helps add some meat to an otherwise tiny body.
Anyway, part of that Mirai infusion is likely because this little Yaris Cross is distantly related, as it’s a hybrid. There’s a 1.5-litre 3-cylinder engine powering the front wheels, and then a hybrid option which pairs a few batteries with that setup for the electric four-wheel drive system.
The new model was meant to debut at the Geneva Motor Show, which was cancelled over the outbreak of covid-19 last month.
There’s also a manual option on the non-hybrid. Those two things should tell you that this car, in this configuration, was always planned for the European market, just like the new Yaris pictured above the U.S aren’t getting. This crossover will also be sold in the Japanese market. It’s not yet known if or when Australia will get the Mirai at this stage, though Toyota has said it plans to bring it here before 2024.
I like this thing a lot, at least for the sort of person that feels compelled to own a tiny crossover. Usually small cars don’t look this bold and meticulously sculpted. I think it’d be a natural fit in the U.S., and it may very well be available there some day, but that doesn’t seem to be in the picture right now.
I just wish they’d gone with a colour that wasn’t “bodily-fluid yellow” for the release pictures. What about a nice red. Or if we have to do yellow, something a little more sunflower?