New Toyota Yaris Cross

Chunky compact SUV with hybrid drivetrain

The arrival of the Yaris Cross this spring means the compact SUV market now has a strong new contender. Its specification, including the option of intelligent all-wheel drive, will tick a lot of boxes. The Yaris Cross is based on the new Yaris platform but adds the rugged style and high-riding stance that SUV owners are looking for, along with the known benefits of Toyota quality and an economical hybrid drivetrain.


Though based on the platform and style of Toyota’s Yaris supermini, the Yaris Cross carves an identity of its own with SUV styling cues such as higher ground clearance and chunky squared-off wheel arches. The roof is finished in a contrasting black, which adds to what Toyota’s design team call a ‘robust and minimalistic’ style. ​

Unique features include the rugged grille, vertical air vents in the front bumper and vertical reflectors in the rear bumper. The Yaris Cross has the same 2560mm wheelbase as the Yaris hatchback, but is 240mm longer overall for greater interior space. Inside, the layout is clearly based on the Yaris hatchback with a high-mounted central touchscreen though the instrument binnacle is specific to this model. The rear seats split 40:20:40 to help stow longer items and the boot features a false floor for extra security.​


The large, centrally mounted touchscreen features the latest version of Toyota’s Touch 2 infotainment system, which offers Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. A 7-inch multimedia screen is offered on the entry level models, while higher trim levels see an upgrade to an 8-inch display. Top-spec models also have front and rear parking sensors and Intelligent Clearance Sonar with automatic braking. Standard across the range are automatic headlights and wipers, with a ‘follow me home’ headlight function providing illumination to the front door when you’ve parked on your drive at night.

Performance & Technology

The Yaris Cross is offered with just the one hybrid drivetrain, a 1.5-litre Atkinson cycle petrol engine allied to an efficient electric motor that delivers a combined 116hp. There’s a choice of front-wheel drive or i-AWD intelligent all-wheel drive; with the latter, the rear axle is powered by an electric motor that cuts in when the traction control senses a loss of grip at the front. The option of all-wheel drive is rare in the compact SUV sector and could be a must-have for those dwelling in rural areas. Under the new WLTP test cycle the i-AWD Yaris Cross produces 135 grams of CO2 per kilometre, making it one of the most efficient all-wheel drive SUVs on the market, while the front drive model emits 120 g/km. 


As a matter of principle Toyota don’t make safety an option, so all models feature the company’s comprehensive Toyota Safety Sense package as standard. This includes Pre-Collision System, Lane Trace Assist, Intelligent Adaptive Cruise Control Road Sign Assist and Automatic High Beam. Anti-Lock Braking, Vehicle Stability Control and Hill-Start Assist are also standard across all models.

While the Yaris Cross sends out all the right visual messages for today’s compact SUV customer, there’s plenty of substance beneath the rugged style. The 1.5-litre petrol-electric hybrid powertrain promises refinement and efficiency, while the option of all-wheel drive could be a clincher for owners of large 4x4 SUVs looking to downsize. Toyota describes it as an ‘urban adventurer’ but would-be explorers will have no need to stop at the city limits. ​
Vehicle length 4,180 mm
Vehicle width 1,765 mm
Vehicle height 1,560 - 1,590 mm
Wheelbase2,560 mm
1.5 litre petrol with electric motor 114 BHP
Unladen 1,110 - 1,270 kg

Toyota Yaris Cross Reviews

Toyota Yaris Cross 360° View