- Bold new exterior cheats the wind
- Soft-touch interior is roomier, quieter
- Nine-airbag array includes front seat cushion airbags
- Segment-exclusive: 3- and 5-door models
- Yaris Entune Audio standard; navigation available
A bold new look with a distinct European flavor. A new, quieter interior, crafted from improved materials. And a new attitude. The redesigned 2015 Toyota Yaris checks all the boxes for small-car shoppers. And then it adds and checks two more boxes for fun and value. In 3-door or 5-door liftback models, the 2015 Yaris makes every day driving less every day.
The 2015 Yaris, like the previous-generations design, comes in 3-door and 5-door liftback configurations, but the style is all-new, and functionality is improved. The new design comes from Toyota’s ED2 design studio located in the South of France, where they know “Hot Hatches.” The new Yaris is also assembled in France, where they have been manufacturing Yaris since 1999 for the European market. The new Yaris gets an aggressive new look with a horizontal chrome grille treatment that appears to continue right into the headlamp. The large grille opening gives this fun-to-drive car just the right touch of “mean” in its look.
Yaris drivers love the cars’ easy maneuverability, and the 2015 model keeps that intact with a class-leading 31.5-ft. turning circle (three-door model). In some situations, that’s small enough to turn a “K” into a “U” for turns.
Newness permeates the Yaris cabin. Sitting in the more premium seat, the Yaris driver faces a sporty new dashboard design and touches new, softer materials throughout.
A retuned suspension, a more rigid body structure, additional sound insulation and attention to aerodynamic details all help to give the 2015 Yaris a smoother, quieter ride. With safety always at the forefront, the Yaris comes equipped with nine standard SRS airbags, including curtain side airbags and front seat cushion airbags.
Altogether, that’s a lot of new packed into an easy-driving small car with big fuel economy numbers and the brand’s penchant for high QDR (Quality, Dependability and Reliability).
Sizing Up Without Upsizing
The 2015 Yaris keeps the tidy size owners prefer, inching it up just a bit with an increase in overall length of two inches. A lower windshield angle, short overhangs and wheels pushed out to the corners give the new Yaris a sporty, road-hugging stance.
Those smallish changes translate to a transformative look. The more aerodynamic 2015 Yaris slips through the air more cleanly with underbody components and new side mirrors cutting drag and wind noise. The Yaris becomes especially sporty looking with the SE grade that adds a black front grille with piano black accent, rear spoiler, black exterior trim, and 16-inch alloy wheels.
A Clear Outlook
The 2015 Yaris is all new inside, and the first thing you notice is that you notice more. And, on the SE grade other drivers see you more easily thanks to new LED daytime running lights that also give the Yaris an advanced and sporty look.
The wide-sweeping single windshield wiper design uses an innovative wet-arm washer system that sprays washer fluid from the base of the wiper arm directly into the blade’s path for improved cleaning. All models come with a standard rear window wiper.
Fun, functionality and frugality come together in the 2015 Yaris. The smooth-revving 1.5-liter, 16-valve, four-cylinder DOHC engine equipped with variable valve timing with intelligence (VVT-i) produces 106 hp at 6,000 rpm and 103 lb.-ft. of torque at 4,200 rpm. The broad torque curve makes those numbers seem even bigger when you’re driving the Yaris, which offers snappy response with either transmission.
A smooth-shifting five-speed manual transmission, made smoother by an improved hydraulic clutch, is standard. An available four-speed electronically controlled automatic transmission features a compact, lightweight design and low friction for high fuel efficiency.
A more rigid body structure does its part to reduce noise and sharpen handling response, while taking 44 pounds out of the already svelte Yaris.
The more rigid body structure, together with retuned suspension, provide for a smoother, more confident ride. The Yaris rides on front MacPherson-strut and rear torsion-beam suspension systems. Not only does sport-tuned electric power steering help make the Yaris nimble and easy to park on crowded city streets, but there’s no hydraulic fluid to check or replace.
The Yaris L rides on 15-inch steel wheels and the LE comes with 15-inch alloy wheels as standard, while the SE rolls on 16-inch machined alloy wheels with 195/50R16 tires.
Sporty Yaris SE
The SE turns the Yaris into an urban-cool sporty ride, with black headlight trim and special gloss black with machined spoke 16-inch alloy wheels with 195/50R16 tires. Behind the wheels are four-wheel disc brakes. A rear diffuser rounds out the package.
Inside, the leather-trimmed tilt three-spoke steering wheel includes audio controls and standard cruise control.
The Yaris packs big safety into a small package. Like all Toyota vehicles, the 2015 Yaris features the Star Safety System™, which includes:
- Vehicle Stability Control (VSC),
- Traction Control (TRAC),
- Anti-lock Braking System (ABS),
- Electronic Brake-Force Distribution (EBD) and Brake Assist,
- and Smart Stop Technology (Toyota’s brake-override system).
Protection in a collision starts with an impact-absorbing body structure that makes wide use of high-tensile strength steel to effectively absorb and distribute collision forces. The 2015 Yaris has nine airbags, including:
- Driver and front-passenger dual-stage airbags (SRS),
- front seat side airbags,
- front seat cushion airbags,
- side curtain shield airbags
- and a driver’s knee airbag.
The Advanced Whiplash Injury-Lessening (WIL) front-seat structure helps to ensure that the region from the head to the lower back are equally supported, helping to reduce whiplash-type injuries during certain types of rear end collisions.
Soft Where It Counts
The previous Yaris had raised the bar for small car cabin design and quality, and the 2015 Yaris moves the benchmark higher still. The new cabin design clearly defines the driver and front passenger spaces, and a new instrument gauge cluster conveys a sporty intent.
Below the large speedometer, an LCD multi-information display includes functions for odometer, twin trip meters, clock, outside temperature, fuel economy, average speed and an Eco-Driving indicator.
Everybody needs a soft place to land, and the 2015 Toyota Yaris offers one with a redesigned cabin featuring soft-touch trim for the instrument panel and front doors. A leather-like grain gives the surfaces a high-quality look and feel. The LE grade features bright trim around the instrument gauges and shifter bezel The sporty SE adds piano black interior trim accents and leather-trimmed shift lever.
A highlight of the 2015 Yaris cabin has to be the improved interior design and improved noise, vibration and hashness. High-quality fabrics and greater surface area, along with raising the front of the cushion, make them more comfortable on longer drives. The side bolsters are a bit higher, too, for a more body-hugging feel, and the driver’s seat height adjustment adds range.
What driver doesn’t carry more “everything” these days? The 2015 Yaris provides larger storage compartments around the cabin, including numerous small pockets around the driver’s seat.
The Sounds of Less Sound
Once on the road, you’ll notice something missing from the 2015 Yaris – noise. A comprehensive approach to reducing noise resulted in using acoustic glass for the windshield and placing sound-absorbing and sound-insulating materials in additional locations throughout the car.
Rocker panel protectors, asphalt sheets for the floor panel and silencers for the floor tunnel help cut road noise, while new under-hood insulators block engine noise from the cabin. Foam-type sound-insulation material is injected into hollow structural spaces to block outside noise. Even the air conditioner ducts, which flow 50-percent more air for 2015, are quieter.
Toyota Value Through and Through
The Yaris comes in L, LE and SE grades, each a mono-spec trim that eliminates option packages. Standard features include air conditioning, sport-tuned electric power steering, 3-spoke tilt steering wheel, power door locks with illuminated entry, cargo area cover and lamp, power windows with driver’s side auto up/down, and color-keyed folding outside mirrors. The Yaris LE adds the convenience of power mirrors, cruise control, steering wheel audio controls, and a remote keyless entry system with engine immobilizer.
All models get the Yaris Entune Audio that includes a 6.1-inch touch screen, an AM/FM CD player with MP3/WMA playback capability, six speakers, HD Radio™ with iTunes® Tagging, auxiliary audio jack, USB port with iPod® connectivity and control, hands-free phone capability, voice recognition, and music streaming via Bluetooth® wireless technology.
For the first time in a Yaris, a navigation system is an available port, or dealer-installed, option.
Toyota imbued the Yaris with a feeling of solidity and quality throughout. That feeling carries through to even small details that make the ownership experience that much more pleasant. The glovebox damper, for example, lets the compartment open with a smoothness seen on luxury models. Dual extendable sun visors with vanity mirrors are a convenience some entry cars leave out.
And, who hasn't left a dome light on overnight only to find a dead battery in the morning? That won’t happen in the Yaris. An automatic cut-off system will turn off any interior lights after 20 minutes if the ignition is switched off.
Toyota Quality, Warranty and Care
Toyota’s 36-month/36,000 mile basic new-car warranty applies to all components other than normal wear and maintenance items. Additional 60-month warranties cover the powertrain for 60,000 miles and against corrosion with no mileage limitation.
The Yaris also comes standard with Toyota Care, a complimentary plan covering normal factory-scheduled maintenance and 24-hour roadside assistance for two years or 25,000 miles, whichever comes first.