Toyota Auris Hybrid

Toyota’s hybrid heaven

19 May 2018

THE latest Toyota Auris will offer a new two-litre full hybrid electric system to herald the start of the company’s wholesale shift towards renewable energy options.

It continues Toyota’s move away from diesels completely, in favour of a combination of petrol and electric, or simply electric alone.

In the case of the new Auris, which is being built in the UK as part of a £240 million investment, it heralds 20 years of hybrid production.

In that time more than 10 million hybrid models have been made, with the concept proving so successful that all Toyota cars will be hybrids in future.

Its core models will come with a choice of two hybrid electric powertrains.

One will provide the traditional benefits of fuel efficiency and a relaxing drive, whilst the second will offer greater power and more dynamic driving characteristics.

It is eight years since the Auris became the first mainstream hybrid, and now it is the first to be offered with a choice of hybrid powertrains.

The current car comes with a choice of five traditional petrol engines, and just one hybrid.

The new one will offer just one conventional petrol engine, in the guise of a 1.2 litre turbocharged unit.

The others will be a 1.8 litre petrol-electric hybrid generating 120bhp and a 2.0 litre hybrid with 175bhp.

The smaller of the two hybrids achieves outstanding economy and low emissions, with up to 50 per cent all-electric driving in daily commutes without the need for plug-in charging.

The larger engine offers these advantages too, but with more power, and steering wheel-mounted shift paddles for a more dynamic, engaging driving experience.

Toyota has developed a new design and manufacturing method to be used at its UK car plant, which the company says creates a more rewarding driving experience thanks to a low centre of gravity, multi-link rear suspension and a more rigid body shell through the use of high strength steel reinforcement in key areas.

In an obvious comparison to the rival Ford Focus, which has never been made in Britain, Toyota says: `` “Our primary goal with the new Auris is to create the most bold and dynamic hatchback on the market without compromising interior usability.”

Longer and lower than the current car, the new Auris adopts a significantly more dynamic design and more striking frontal styling. The length has increased by 40mm, all of which is contained within a longer wheelbase, which creates more room inside.

However, the height is reduced by 25mm, which creates a sleeker shape and a lower bonnet, which in turn improves safety by giving the driver a clearer forward view.

Prices have yet to be announced for the new Toyota, which lines up alongside Ford’s German-made Focus, which costs from £17,930.