Geneva Motor Show - Toyota’s Auris is back for a third attempt at cracking the Golf class, this time with a somewhat more striking design and a drivetrain strategy that goes big on hybrids.
Due to reach South Africa in the third quarter of this year, the all-new Auris joins the C-HR and Prius on Toyota’s new TNGA global platform.
It’s 40mm longer than before, with all of that extra length going into the wheelbase to procure more legroom, but it also aims for a sportier stance with a 30mm increase in width and a 25mm reduction in height.
The new Auris ushers in a new powertrain strategy in which hybrid powertrains take centre stage. In fact, the only conventional engine is the 1.2-litre turbopetrol, which is joined by a 1.8-litre petrol-electric hybrid with a system output of 90kW as well as Toyota’s completely new and more potent 2-litre hybrid drivetrain, with a system output of 132kW.
The South African line-up will kick off with the 1.2 turbo as the only option, but the range will offer hybrid options at a later stage.
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Toyota has also paid more attention to driving dynamics this time around, not only through its lower centre of gravity, but also via increased rigidity and the use of a multi-link rear suspension system.
The exterior design, too, is unashamedly aimed at the European market, for which Toyota has created a more youthful look but without going too over the top. Catamaran hull shaped creases at the corners of the front and rear bumpers add a distinctive touch, while the two-tone roof keeps it abreast with Euro styling trends.
Toyota has yet to release pictures of the cabin, or any information pertaining to it, but it is likely to inherit a ‘floating screen’ cabin design - along with the latest infotainment systems - from the C-HR.