2015 has been a good year for families and companies seeking sub-compact sedans. Not only have Asian manufacturers developed and launched plenty of models, but they have also been brought to our shores by the representative dealers. Naturally we took up the mission of comparing the models and one such task earlier in the year made us have a go at the third generation 2015 Toyota Vios.
The latest Vios has the new Toyota design language all over it- sharp angles, squinty-eyed head lamps, forward chin front bumper with large gaping gills and a squared off behind with large LED rear lamps. Despite the tall stature of the car, it has a sporty feel to it due to the sharply outlined profile the designers at Toyota tricked it out with. The wheels look a tad bit small for the seemingly large vehicle.
Inside, there is a lot of space - in the front, in the rear and in the trunk. Although there is no question of leg room availability in the rear, overly tall passengers in excess of 6 feet might have to be cautious about hitting the roof. The seats are otherwise the right kind of firm and are comfortable so that you do not tire out from excessive time in Dhaka traffic. The dashboard, center console and door panels are cleverly contrasted with fake leather stitch effect plastic panels. Does look a bit tacky, but on the plus side, you can wash these regularly, keeping the cabin looking fresh as new always.
Toyota's revolutionary VVT-I 1.5 litre petrol motor and a bullet proof four speed automatic transmission lays out a solid economical drivetrain platform that is built for moving people at all conditions. The Vios has the potential to survive Bangladesh's sultry humid summer, its incessant downpours, the floods that come with it and foggy winters. We are unsure how the vehicle will fare in the volatile political conditions though. The 107 BHP is just enough for zipping through urban traffic. Step on the right pedal and you'll notice the 103 lb-ft of torque shows up quite early in the RPM band. Even with a full air con blast and a loaded cabin, you'll not be hunting for more power to 'move forward'- that's what Vios means in Spanish.
We took the Vios through a rigorous road test filled with ludicrous speed bumps and pitfall sized potholes. Interestingly, we did not feel much - the soft-ish suspension conquers all that relatively well. You would also be expecting some body roll from a tall car like Vios, but it does not hint at much sway in the corners either. Moreover, the heavily insulated cabin is quiet enough to deter the noise pollution outside.
We'll be honest about the brakes - they may as well be the best brakes in this segment. All around discs provide massive stopping power that tackles late braking and abusive repeated heavy braking.
The 2015 Vios rides and handles well, it is economical, comes with a bulletproof drivetrain and you can keep the interior as good as new even after years of abuse. Can't get more practical than that, really.
2015 Toyota Vios
Engine:1.5 liter 1NZ-FE 16 valve VVTI four cylinder (107 horsepower and 103 lb-ft torque @6000RPM)
Transmission:4 speed automatic
Brakes:4 wheel disc brakes (ventilated front, solid disc rear) with ABS/EBD
Features: Steering mounted audio controls, cupholders, third brake light, smart keyless entry, start-stop, halogen projector headlamps, leather insert interior, dual airbags.
Price: Starts from
28.90 lakh taka
For details, contact Navana Ltd.