- Newly available Ruby Flare Pearl for a custom look
- Nine airbags, including front-passenger seat cushion airbags
- Unexpected amenities in a quiet, roomy cabin
- Sophisticated European design with bold color choices
The 2017 Toyota Yaris is a small car with very big news. The brand’s least expensive model, the Yaris for 2017 is also the brand’s latest vehicle to come standard with Toyota Safety Sense™ C (TSS-C), a trio of driver assist technologies that help drivers get from point “A” to point “B” with safety assurance. Yaris offers both three-door and five-door body styles.
Toyota Safety Sense™ C is designed to help address three key areas of driver assistance: preventing or mitigating frontal collisions, helping keep drivers within their lane, and to help enhance road safety during nighttime driving. Technologies include Toyota’s Pre-Collision System, Lane Departure Alert and Automatic High Beams. Yaris is the first entry subcompact in the segment to standardize these key safety features across all grades.
Toyota had announced at the 2016 New York International Auto Show that it would make Toyota Safety Sense standard on nearly all models by the end of 2017. That will put Toyota (and Lexus) four years ahead of the model-year 2022 industry target announced by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).
That’s the serious side of Yaris for 2017. On the fun side, this European-designed model will offer a vibrant new color, Ruby Flare Pearl, a premium paint imbued with large metallic flakes. For the total custom look, this color will also be available in combination with a Black Sand Pearl roof.
Euro Look, Euro Agility
If the Yaris looks like one of those intriguing, fun European compacts you wish they’d offer in the U.S., that’s because it is. Yaris emerged from Toyota’s ED2 design studio in the South of France, and Toyota also assembles the Yaris in France. Stretching just 155.5 inches from bumper to bumper, the Yaris can scoot through urban landscapes with ease, aided by a class-leading 31.5-ft. turning circle (three-door model).
With its ultra-short overhangs and wheels pushed out to the corners, the Yaris offers a very roomy cabin. The five-door model offers up to 15.6 cu. ft. of carrying space (15.3 for three-door) behind the rear seats, about the size of a midsize sedan’s trunk. There’s significantly more carrying room with the 60/40 rear seatbacks lowered.
Quietude with Attitude
The Yaris gets its solid road feel from a rigid body structure that also forms the foundation for a quiet ride. The chiseled bodylines are designed for aerodynamic goodness, with the car’s 0.30 coefficient of drag (Cd) and even specially shaped side mirrors helping to reduce drag and wind noise.
To further keep noise at bay, the Yaris uses an acoustic glass windshield, and foam-type sound insulation material injected into hollow structural spaces helps in blocking outside noise. Rocker panel protectors, asphalt sheets for the floor panel and silencers for the floor tunnel help cut road noise.
The Yaris rides on front MacPherson-strut and rear torsion-beam suspension systems, with the SE grade getting its own special sport tuning and larger wheels for a more agile feel. The Yaris SE rolls on very sporty 16-inch alloy wheels with P195/50R16 tires; all other models have 15-inch wheels (steel with wheel covers on L and alloy on LE). On all Yaris models, you’ll never need to check messy hydraulic power steering fluid, because there isn’t any. Instead, the Yaris uses sport-tuned electric power steering, which also helps contribute to better fuel efficiency.
Low Cost Scoot
Yaris makes saving on fuel costs fun with a smooth-revving 1.5-liter, 16-valve, four-cylinder DOHC engine. With 106 hp at 6,000 rpm and 103 lb.-ft. of torque at 4,200 rpm, it’s an eager performer. And, thanks to variable valve timing with intelligence (VVT-i), the engine produces a broad torque curve to give the Yaris great responsiveness in everyday driving.
For those who still like to row their own gears, the Yaris L three-door and SE are available with a slick-shifting five-speed manual transmission, featuring an easy-effort hydraulic clutch. A four-speed electronically controlled automatic transmission is available and is standard on LE. EPA estimated city/highway/combined mpg with a manual transmission is 30/37/33 MPG and 30/36/32 MPG for models equipped with the automatic.
Toyota Quality at Every Touch
The feeling of solidity and quality carries through to the Yaris cabin, where high-quality soft-touch materials convey a “class above” look and feel. Quality lives in the details, too. For example, a glovebox damper 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. The LE and SE grades feature bright trim around the instrument gauges and shifter bezel.
The instrument gauge cluster looks sporty and offers lots of functionality. Below the large speedometer, an LCD multi-information display includes functions for odometer, trip meter, clock, outside temperature, fuel economy and average speed. Plenty of storage compartments, including numerous small pockets around the driver’s seat, can keep digital devices and other personal items out of sight.
Toyota Value in Every Grade
The Yaris three- and five-door models come in L and LE grades, and five-door also offers the sporty SE grade. The mono-spec trims eliminate option packages, and in the Toyota tradition, standard equipment is comprehensive. The Yaris L starts with air conditioning, sport-tuned electric power steering, three-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 LE adds the convenience of power mirrors, cruise control, steering wheel audio controls and a remote keyless entry system with engine immobilizer.
In all Yaris models, the standard Entune Audio system 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. A navigation system is an available port- or dealer-installed option.
Also in the Toyota tradition, the 2017 Yaris features details that the owner appreciates more and more as the years go by. Take the wide-sweeping single windshield wiper design, for example. Its innovative wet-arm washer system sprays washer fluid from the base of the wiper arm directly into the blade’s path for improved cleaning. And, all Yaris models come standard with a rear window wiper. There’s even a feature that automatically turns off any interior lights after 20 minutes if the ignition is switched off to help prevent a dead battery.
Yaris SE: Looking Sporty, Driving Sporty
The SE grade delivers an extra dose of fun on the daily commute, thanks to sport-tuned suspension, machined spoke 16-inch alloy wheels with 195/50R16 tires and four-wheel disc brakes. The black front grille with a piano black accent, rear spoiler, rear diffuser, black exterior trim, black headlight trim and LED daytime running lights give the SE a distinctly sporty attitude. Cabin comfort moves up in the SE with all the LE interior upgrades plus leather-trimmed tilt shift lever and three-spoke steering wheel, piano black interior trim accents and contrasting white stitching on the seats.
Big Safety, and Nine Airbags
Protection in a collision in the 2017 Yaris starts with an impact-absorbing body structure that makes wide use of high-tensile strength steel to help absorb and distribute collision forces. All Yaris models come equipped with nine SRS airbags, including:
- Driver and front-passenger dual-stage airbags
- Driver and front-passenger seat side airbags
- Front-passenger seat cushion airbag
- Side curtain shield airbags
- 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 is supported, helping to reduce whiplash-type injuries during certain types of rear end collisions.
Like all Toyota vehicles, the 2017 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
- Smart Stop Technology (Toyota’s brake-override system)
Toyota Safety Sense-C (TSS-C)
The Toyota Safety Sense-C system, standard in the 2017 Yaris, combines a trio of advanced safety technologies.
Pre-collision System (PCS), which operates at vehicle speeds of approximately 7 to 85 mph, is designed to detect a vehicle ahead using a camera and laser beam. If PCS determines there is a possibility of a collision, it uses audio and visual alerts to prompt the driver to take evasive action and brake.
If the driver notices the hazard and applies the brakes, PCS may provide additional braking force using Brake Assist. If the driver does not brake in a set time, and PCS determines that the possibility of a frontal collision with another vehicle is extremely high, the system may automatically apply the brakes, reducing speed by up to 19 mph under certain conditions to help the driver reduce the impact and in certain cases avoid a collision.
Lane Departure Alert (LDA) is designed to use a camera to detect visible white and yellow lane markings in front of the vehicle and the vehicle’s position on the road. If LDA determines that the vehicle is starting to unintentionally deviate from its lane, the system alerts the driver with an audio and visual alert.
Automatic High Beam (AHB), at speeds above approximately 25 mph, is designed to use an in-vehicle camera to help detect the headlights of oncoming vehicles and taillights of vehicles traveling ahead, automatically switching between high and low beams as appropriate.
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.