Toyota Etios Hatchback First Drive & Gearbox

Toyota Etios

Toyota Etios Overview

The Toyota Etios has gone through yet another update. Since being launched in 2010 this is now the fourth iteration of the car and it looks like this time around, the Japanese automaker has really put its weight behind the vehicle. Despite always being priced a bit higher than its compact sedan rivals due to the extended length, it has been a decent seller in terms of numbers. Now, to keep continuity of volumes Toyota has worked on the strengths of the car to improve them. It gets some major cosmetic updates as well as an upgraded safety suite which has multiple first-in-segment features. But are these update s enough to finally propel this ‘giant among men’ into the big league? Read on to find out…Check for car loan interest calculator.

Toyota Etios Look

Compared to the outgoing model, the new Toyota Etios Platinum do pose an appealing stance. Updates can be seen at the front with the new wider bumper and revised grille to give a touch of sportiness. The carmaker hasn’t gone extreme when it comes to using chrome appliques. The use of carbon-fibre texture, in fact, looks really nice on the front bumper. The v-shaped grille is mounted high with black inserts and the chrome studded signature mark at the centre looks cool. The rounded fog lamps now get boomerang styled highlighted enclosure.

The side profile of Etios largely remains intact except the new set of alloys and the same thick protruding strip running in the middle. The rear end of the car feature new bumper and thick chrome slat with red reflectors on the boot lid connecting the two tail lamps. Overall, the changes are subtle but do provide a bit of youthful touch to the car.

Toyota Etios Comfort

Slightly different than its predecessor. Even if the overall layout remains the same, the fabric for the seats has changed and the dashboard is in dual tone – black and beige. Skimping on bells and whistles again can be understood considering it to be a budget sedan. However, some components still can’t hide the fact that the carmaker has cut corners. For example, the air-con vents look and feel very old. Overall plastic quality is average and doesn’t give a feel of a 10 lakh rupee car. The meaty steering wheel wrapped in high quality leather feels nice, but could have been set at a higher position. Unfortunately, the instrument cluster’s position remains the same, but the new meters look good and are functional.

The Etios always had a good all-round visibility even when sitting low, thanks to the large glasshouse. The Platinum Etios is no different. In fact, now the seat height can be also be adjusted. Seats are supportive due to the good side bolstering and have adequate thigh support as well. Like before, the cabin is ergonomical and there are plenty of storage places in the front and second row. The highlight remains the 13litre cooled glove box, which is fairly deep. The second row also offers generous amount of space. The door panels are nicely sculpted with comfortable arm rests. The foot room is generous, so accommodating even those with XL sized boots isn’t much of a task. Although the windows don’t completely go down, they are large enough to not make anyone feel claustrophobic. Even the fifth occupant won’t feel short changed due to the 595litre boot. Thanks to the light colour, airy cabin and comfortable seats, the Etios is a good long distance companion.

Also, where Toyota has taken the game up is on safety features. ABS and EBD are standard across all variants and the body structure has been strengthened in key places. Furthermore, every trim gets Isofix mounts for child seats as well. Then the second row gets a three-point seat belt with adjustable headrest. Both these features surely make the third occupant feel secure. For the infotainment needs you get a 2-din music system that looks after-market and feels basic. But the best part is that the much-needed features missing from the predecessor have been added. This includes the door auto-lock feature, electrically foldable and adjustable ORVMs, one-touch-down function for the driver’s window, height-adjustable driver seat and adjustable head rests. For more details on Toyota Etios  check Bioinformatica

Toyota Etios Gearbox

The Platinum Etios can be had with a 1.5-litre petrol or a 1.4-litre diesel. Both are four cylinder units and the former produces 88bhp/132Nm while the latter is good for 67bhp/170Nm. Both are only offered with a five-speed manual.

We got our hands on the more popular diesel model which uses the same engine from the more expensive Corolla Altis albeit in a lower state of tune. Firstly, it’s a noisy engine this and the clatter is quite audible in the cabin even in heavy t raffic. It has a lower torque figure than most of its contemporaries and has gained some weight over the outgoing model in view of the new safety standards but this has not really affected its performance. Toyota has worked to spread out the same and has given it an excellent mid-range which allows for ease of movement at low speeds as well as out on the highway. You can cruise at 100kmph at just 2000rpm while pottering around in traffic in third gear works just fine. It has an ARAI fuel efficiency figure of 23.59kmpl. They have also addressed the issue of the clutch action by making it lighter than the one in the outgoing model.

As mechanically Etios remain untouched, the fuel efficiency is also the same. Where the diesel engine returns ARAI certified mileage of 23.59kmpl, the petrol engine, on the other hand, returns 16.78kmpl.

Toyota Etios Riding

If there is one thing that Toyota has done right with the Etios and now the Platinum is the ride quality. It is slightly on the firm side but seems to work as it absorbs most pot holes and bumps without sending much back to the cabin. Consequently, the car has good high speed stability and feels quite planted even at 140kmph.The electrically assisted steering despite needing too many turns to go from lock to lock feels light, is easy to use and weighs up quite decently as you go faster. Book Toyota Etios Test Drive.

The earlier versions of the Etios had a stiff ride and though Toyota has re-tuned the Platinum Etios’ suspension, it is still stiff in a good way. It is well-calibrated to absorb bumps and offer a good composure. This also offers a flat and firm ride at high speeds. Despite being just above 1000kg, the car feels stable at three-digit speeds. The steering is direct, but it is too slow like before. The brakes have a good bite and the pedal’s linearity is good to stop the car even in a panic situation. ABS and EBD have anyway got your back if and when the need arises.

Toyota Etios Safety

The performance of ABS+EBD brakes is confident and performs just as expected. One of the biggest talking points of the car in this version is the updates in the safety department. The sedan now comes equipped with dual front airbags, ABS with EBD, ISOFIX mounts, keyless entry and driver seat belt warning as standard features.

Move on to the top variants and you also get front fog lamps and reverse parking sensors. The carmaker has also reinforced the chassis so that it could perform better in case of crash. And this can be seen in the fact that Etios got 4-star safety rating in Global NCAP crash test.

Toyota Etios Price in Pune

Toyota Etios On-Road Price in Pune ranges from 8,94,967 to 10,39,575 for variants Etios VX Platinum Edition and Etios VXD Platinum Edition respectively. Toyota Etios is available in 2 variants and 7 colours. Below are details of Toyota Etios variants price in Pune. Check for Etios price in Pune at Autozhop.

Toyota Etios Bottomline

It is true that the Etios sedan still lacks that quirky or cool trait that many cars of today have. But that can be avoided to look at the practical side of the car. The Platinum Etios looks better than its earlier model, is spacious, has comfortable seats, has a frugal engine, drives well, is packed with necessary equipment and is priced well. And what makes it an even sweeter deal is that all trims are by default equipped with all the new safety features.

Currently, Toyota Platinum Etios is available in three different variants such as GX, V and VX. Its base trim GX is available at the price tag of Rs. 6.8 lakh for the petrol and Rs. 7.9 lakh for the diesel variant. The mid-range model V is tagged at Rs. 7.09 lakh and Rs. 8.19 lakh for the petrol and diesel trims respectively. The range-topping VX variant is offered at the price tag of Rs. 7.69 lakh for the petrol and Rs. 8.79 lakh for the diesel trim, all priced ex-showroom, Delhi.

Earlier, the Honda City, Hyundai Verna and Maruti Ciaz were making it difficult for Etios to stay in the competition. Now, with all the shuffling happening in various segments all these years, Etios now falls in the price category of under 4-meter cars such as Maruti Dzire, Honda Amaze and Hyundai Xcent.

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