Toyota Yaris

Carpedia

Nov 29th, 2019

Toyota Yaris

The Toyota Yaris is a subcompact/supermini or B-segment passenger car that Toyota produced for five generations since 1999 to the present. It has a front-engine, front-wheel-drive layout. The first-generation Yaris, aka Toyota Echo in Australia, ended in 2005 with the NBC-based XP10 series models. 

The Yaris nameplate derived inspiration from the Charites (or Charis in singular form), the goddesses of charm and beauty in Greek mythology. 

The 2019 and current models of Yaris are available in 3-door/5-door hatchback and 4-door sedan body styles. Still, they wear several badges, e.g. in Australia, both body styles have a Yaris nameplate, but the sedan is Belta in Japan and Vios for the rest of Asia, while Japan still named the hatch as the Vitz until 2019. 

First Generation, XP10/NBC Platform (1999–2005)

Read about the first generation (aka Toyota Echo) in a separate article here, which also includes a back story on the Toyota Vitz, internationally rebranded as Toyota Yaris.

Second Generation, XP90/B Platform (2005–2013)

Toyota's ED2 design studios redesigned the second-generation XP90 series Yaris hatchback in 2005. They marketed it in Japan early the same year (as Toyota Vitz), while the rest of the world had to wait till the end of 2005. 

Meanwhile, Toyota’s Japanese design studios redesigned the XP90 sedan, launching it in November 2005 as the Toyota Belta in Japan, and exporting it in 2006 as the second-generation Yaris sedan (or Vios in other markets).  

2005

Both Yaris sedan and hatch share the B-platform underpinning and are similar in many ways. In Australia, the hatchback arrived earlier than the sedan body style and came with two trim-specified engines. The trims were the base YR, mid-level YRS, and top-level sporty YRX, and below are their specs and features:

YR, 3-door/5-door base trim (2005-2013)

  • Powertrain – 1.3L 2NZ-FE I4 petrol engine, 4-speed auto or 5-speed manual, 63 kW, 121 Nm, 6.0-6.5L/100km
  • Features – dual front airbags, ABS, air conditioning, brake assist, central locking remote control, electronic brake-force distribution, engine immobiliser, power mirrors/steering/windows, radio CD player   

YRS, 3-door/5-door base trim (2005-2013)

  • Powertrain – 1.5L 1NZ-FE I4 petrol engine, 4-speed auto or 5-speed manual, 80 kW, 141 Nm, 6.1-6.7L/100km
  • Features – adds leather steering wheel to the base trim

 YRX, 3-door/5-door base trim (2005-2013)

  • Powertrain – 1.5L 1NZ-FE I4 petrol engine, 4-speed auto or 5-speed manual, 80 kW, 141 Nm, 6.1-6.7L/100km
  • Features – adds a leather steering wheel, 15-inch alloy wheels, CD with 6-CD stacker, and front fog lights to the base trim

2006

The sedan variant went on sale the following year alongside the hatches. It came in two trims – YRS and YRX – with a sole engine choice, the 1.5L that the higher level hatches had.

YRS, 4-door 5-seat base trim (2006-2013)

  • Powertrain – 1.5L 1NZ-FE I4 petrol engine, 4-speed auto or 5-speed manual, 80 kW, 141 Nm, 6.1-6.7L/100km
  • Features – dual front airbags, ABS, air conditioning, brake assist, central locking remote control, electronic brake-force distribution, engine immobiliser, leather steering wheel, power mirrors, power steering, power windows, radio CD player

YRX, 4-door 5-seat base trim (2006-2013)

  • Powertrain – 1.5L 1NZ-FE I4 petrol engine, 4-speed auto or 5-speed manual, 80 kW, 141 Nm, 6.1-6.7L/100km
  • Features – adds 15-inch alloy wheels, body kit, CD with 6-CD stacker, front fog lights, radio CD with four speakers, and a rear spoiler

2008

A facelift included as standard equipment 15-inch alloy wheels, front fog lights, and CD with 6-CD stacker. 

2010

The Yaris received slight revisions in its bumper, air dam, and taillights in 2010. 

Third Generation, XP130 (2011–2019) and XP150 (2013–present)

The third-generation Yaris hatchback (XP130 series) wheeled into the Australian market in 2011 at the Australian International Motor Show in Melbourne, carrying over the previous powertrains and trims with some enhancements but sportier and sleeker. It had a restyled front bumper and a new front grille. The basic model (YR hatch) welcomed an adjustable steering wheel (tilt & telescopic), cloth trim, electronic stability program, head airbags, radio CD with four speakers, side front airbags, seatbelt pre-tensioners (front), trip computer, and traction control system.

The YRS received cruise control and radio CD with six speakers, while the YRX was enhanced with automatic A/C climate control, dusk-sensing headlights and Sat Nav. All models now have seven airbags and multi-information display. 

Toyota introduced the ZR trim hatchback, sporting the same 1.5L engine but only available in manual. It featured sporty bumper and body kit, cruise control, dusk-sensing headlights, leather steering wheel, rear spoiler, Sat Nav, and sports seats.

A major facelift in 2014 introduced new trims – the base Ascent, mid-range SX, and range-topping ZR, which brought a whole new level of stylish and sporty appeal to the Yaris. The hatches are now exclusively 5-door models and powered by the same engines. 

The basic trim added loads of features to the previous offering. It now included body-coloured bumpers, dome lights, cargo cover, adjustable headrests, halogen headlights, low fuel warning, mobile phone connectivity, reversing camera, split-fold rear seat, and space-saver spare wheel. It has the same 1.3L engine that powered the previous base model, paired with either 4-speed auto transmission or 5-speed manual.

The SX adds front fog lights, leather gear knob, leather steering wheel, and protective glazing. The ZR trim adds to the SX trim the following: automatic A/C climate control, body kit, rear spoiler, rear lights LED, Sat Nav, sports seats, and voice recognition system. SX gets its power from the same 1.5L engine of the previous YRS, coupled with a 4-speed auto or 5-speed manual. The ZR hatch comes with the 1.5L engine but exclusively teamed up with 4-speed automatic transmission. 

The sedan version (XP150) got its update in 2013 and also gained the enhanced safety pack of seven-airbag package, traction control system, and vehicle stability control. Beyond that, however, it did not receive the same attention that the hatchback did. Toyota eventually phased it out in Australia in 2015, although sales still trickled until 2017. 

Fourth Generation (2020–present)

Toyota is brewing a fourth-generation Yaris for Japan and Europe, basing it on the TNGA-B platform that has underpinned several Toyota and Lexus models including the fourth-generation Prius. 

-JMSL