Toyota confirms new compact SUV for SA, and it’s probably the Urban Cruiser
JOHANNESBURG - Toyota South Africa is planning to launch a new compact SUV in South Africa.
While introducing its new Ayga budget hatchback to local media on Wednesday, Toyota showed a slide detailing its small car line-up in South Africa, and at the top was an unnamed B-Segment SUV which the company describes as affordable, spacious, stylish and comfortable.
When approached for comment, a Toyota SA spokesperson told IOL that it could not disclose any details on the B-SUV as yet. However, there is good reason to believe that the new high-rider in question is the Urban Cruiser. While the new Yaris Cross is technically also a B SUV candidate, it’s unlikely that this is the vehicle TSA plans to introduce as it would be a more expensive offering.
The Urban Cruiser is the second Suzuki-based vehicle to emerge from the partnership between Toyota and Suzuki, which has already given birth to the Baleno-based Toyota Starlet. The Urban Cruiser is also an Indian-built product based heavily on the Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza - which is a shortened version of the global Vitara.
But while the Starlet can only be told apart from its Suzuki twin by its badging and slightly different grille, Toyota has put more effort into distinguishing the Urban Cruiser from the Vitara. Although it still shares its basic shape and cabin design with the Suzuki, the Toyota SUV gets a unique frontal design inspired by the Fortuner.
The vehicle is powered by Suzuki’s 1.5-litre normally aspirated engine, which produces 77kW and 138Nm. Power goes to the front wheels through either a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmission.
Inside you’ll find Suzuki’s latest 17.8cm touchscreen infotainment system, and the Urban Cruiser is also available with features like automatic climate control, push-button start and cruise control.
Watch this space for more information when Toyota releases details of its upcoming compact SUV.