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2021 Toyota Yaris detailed for Aus ahead of August arrival

John Law

Toyota Australia has confirmed and detailed the all-new Yaris ahead of its (delayed) debut in August this year, with the diminutive city car the first in its segment to offer the choice of Hybrid propulsion.

Mirroring its Corolla sibling, there are three variants locked in for Australia – the Ascent Sport base trim, mid-spec SX and range-topping ZR, pricing to be confirmed closer to launch.

Toyota has already detailed the power plants that will slip under the Yaris’ short bonnet – a turbocharged 1.5-litre three-cylinder with outputs of 88kW/145Nm is standard fit. A mega frugal 85kW 1.5-litre hybrid powertrain will be an option, though.

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The mid-spec Yaris SX

Fuel consumption is claimed at a seriously impressive 3.3/100km for the hybrid Yaris, which is available only with a CVT automatic gearbox. The turbocharged engine is impressive, too, at 4.9l/100km in WLTP testing, that’s available with a CVT or – enthusiasts rejoice – a six-speed manual.

Unlike the current car, the new Yaris sits on the Toyota’s new small-car TNGA-B platform shared with the coming Yaris Cross, this platform engineering bodes well for the little car’s handling.

Toyota’s move to Hybrid offers a real counterpoint to other what’s on offer from city-car stalwarts like the Mazda 2 and Volkswagen Polo, though Toyota will need to up the interior game from the current Yaris.

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The athletic ZR gets bigger wheels, boot spoiler.

From the images we’ve seen, the Yaris looks very promising from the outside, the updated and widened front grille lends it some aggression from the bonkers GR Yaris. A contrasting black roof on the pictured ZR model adds to the athletic exterior.

The option of a contrasting roof will be available in conjunction with some of the 12 exterior colours; there will be a choice between black or white to suit tastes.

Toyota hasn’t pushed quite so hard on the interior; first impressions indicate the Yaris will be conservative, though the usual goodies like steering wheel-mounted controls, separate climate control and partially digital instrument cluster are present.

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Inside the ever practical Yaris. It looks like purple paint will be offered, too.

That hybrid powertrain will be available as an option on the upper trim ZR and SX Yaris variants, just like the Corolla, the Ascent Sport is petrol-power only.

But, standard active safety tech is impressive for the class, the Yaris will use a combination of camera and radar to provide AEB with day and night pedestrian and cyclist detection, reverse camera, lane-keep assist and speed sign recognition across the range.

From the entry-level Ascent Sport, the Yaris sees a 7-inch touchscreen, wired Apple CarPlay and Android Auto with voice recognition, USB port, LED daytime running lights with Halogen headlights, 15-inch steel wheels and the choice of manual or CVT gearbox.

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Conservative, but the ZR gets red highlights.

15-inch alloy wheels are standard on the mid-spec SX, as is a CVT transmission, full LED head and taillights, leather-appointed steering wheel and gearknob, keyless entry and push-button start.

Toyota pitches the ZR as the more athletic variant and can be identified by its larger 16-inch alloy wheels and rear boot spoiler. Inside a head-up display, sports seats, red interior accents, paddle shifters – for the petrol variant.

More active safety technology is standard on the ZR with rear AEB, parking sensors front and rear and blind-spot monitoring, though there is no mention of adaptive cruise control.

The arrival of the all-new Yaris has been delayed to August 2020, with detailed Australian pricing to arrive closer to the launch.

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The entry-level Ascent Sport. Please don’t buy a gold one.