Toyota Yaris Review

Gumtree Rating

4.0 rating

A globally successful car from the Toyota brand, the Yaris has been around for more than two decades after first entering the market in 1999. As a subcompact car, it’s been most widely advertised for its low emissions and excellent fuel efficiency. Toyota got in early in the electric-car era, with their hybrids dating back a decade now – a move that’s obviously paid off, given where the car industry stands today. Made available in both automatic and manual variants, the Yaris is a strong contender in the small hatch segment.

Visit the Toyota Yaris model page to learn more

What we think about the Toyota Yaris

Rating high in terms of practicality, there’s a reason that the Yaris is the highest-selling Toyota in Europe.



Great fuel efficiency


Cool design and styling


Handling could be better

Rear legroom isn’t great

The current fourth-generation Yaris is quite new, going to market only in 2020. It’s available in four trim levels: the Icon, Design, Dynamic and Excel. There’s also a limited Launch Edition model, which has a similar spec to the top-grade Dynamic and Excel models and features a distinctive two-tone exterior.

Driving performance of the Toyota Yaris

Our Driving Rating8 / 10

With every iteration of the Yaris, Toyota made the hybrids lighter and nippier. While the Yaris is built to take on town roads with ease, it also performs quite well on motorways. Acceleration and overtaking aren’t too much of a hassle with the hybrids and more potent diesel variants. No matter the engine or generation, the Yaris is easy to drive and lets you take things smooth on the road. Plus, getting your hands on 1.8-litre supercharged engines means genuine fun – they’re nippy and seriously responsive.

Safety and reliability of the Toyota Yaris

Our Safety Rating9 / 10

The standard safety kit on the Yaris is extensive. From the third generation on, every model gets a pre-collision system with autonomous emergency braking, which warns drivers and preps the brakes if a collision is anticipated. You’ll also get lane-departure warning and an auto-dimming main beam as standard. The Yaris scored the highest five-star Euro NCAP safety rating on this generation right from the beginning, but that didn’t stop Toyota from adding more safety features with each facelift. The latest 2020 generation gets LED lights, blindspot monitoring and a heads-up display which allows for an easy-to-see instrument cluster – all as standard.

Under the bonnet of the Toyota Yaris

Our Engine Rating7 / 10

Through the years, the Yaris has been made available in engine sizes ranging from 1.0-litre to 1.8-litre, in petrol, diesel and hybrid variants. However, the diesels have been discontinued since 2017. The entry-level 1.0-litre from the 2011 generation produces 93 bhp and takes a leisurely 15.3 seconds to get from 0-60 mph, while the range-topping 1.8-litre variants sprint from 0-60 mph in just 6.3 seconds. In general, the six-speed manuals fare better than the CVT automatic transmissions, though the new e-CVT variant bucks this trend. On the latest 2020 generation, Toyota has scrapped all engines except the 1.5-litre hybrid, which goes from 0-60 mph in under 10 seconds.

What you'll find in the Toyota Yaris

Our Design Rating7 / 10

In general, the Yaris has always been lauded as a good-looking supermini – although nowhere near as experimental as the Honda Jazz and Renault Clio. Dual-tone Yaris editions are a treat to look out for, though. Toyota has been clever to incorporate frequent facelifts with the Yaris to keep it looking up-to-date, too: on the previous generation, a 2014 facelift added sharper styling to the bonnet, and the tail-end highlights were made more prominent with the 2017 iteration. The latest 2020 model goes all out, presenting a large, muscular appearance with a distinctive grille and equally daunting wheel arches.

Comfort and interiors in the Toyota Yaris

Our Comfort Rating7 / 10

Build quality is more than reasonable with the Yaris, given the price point. One quirk of the 2006 generation is the centrally placed instrument cluster, but it’s nothing you can’t get used to. In terms of legroom and headroom, the Yaris outperforms most rivals. However, the tighter passenger space in the back means it isn’t ideal for long trips. Getting your hands on 2006-2011 models means that you can completely flatten out the rear seats for extra boot space, whereas from 2011, the rear seats fold down with the standard 60:40 split.

Red Toyota Yaris Interior
Photo by Kārlis Dambrāns

What features you'll find in the Toyota Yaris

Our Features Rating6 / 10

From 2011 onwards, the central instrument panel was replaced by a digital touchscreen fitted with the commendable Touch2 multimedia system. 2017 saw a clean-up of the tech, with better layouts and a more extensive menu. 2020 variants get a seven-inch screen which can be upgraded to a JBL infotainment system with upgraded speakers and smartphone integration technology. You’re likely to find upwards of 14 trim options on the Yaris – meaning there’s plenty of choices to get exactly what you need and nothing more or less. In its quest to become the safest supermini in town, the Yaris doesn’t hold back on safety features, even on entry-level trims.

What fuel efficiency to expect from the Toyota Yaris

Our Fuel Consumption Rating8 / 10

Frugality is most definitely the finest feather in the Yaris’ cap. Of course, the hybrids are the best and return up to an impressive 76.3 mpg. The most frugal petrols are the base-level 1.0-litre engines, which give a respectable 61.4 mpg, and the latest 2020 1.5-litre automatic hybrid states official figures of between 65.7 and 68.9 mpg. For some perspective, Renault hybrid engines are rated to give 55.4-65.7 mpg. The only comparable option to the Yaris in this department is the Peugeot 208.

Running costs of the Toyota Yaris

Our Cost Rating7 / 10

The 2020 model’s emission stands at 92 g/km to 98 g/km. On the older generation, entry-level 1.0-litre models emit 131-142 g/km of CO2 while the top-line 1.8-litre model is rated at 170g/km. Based on trim and engine, insurance levels range from groups four to eleven, which can add up to significant benefits in tax costs. Toyota’s five-year warranty is one of the best on the market, beaten only by Kia’s seven-year offering. The Yaris hasn’t faced too many significant issues and is generally considered reliable, though used car buyers will want to keep on the lookout for badly maintained 1.4-litre diesel models, as they seem to suffer from particulate filter (DPF) issues.

Our verdict of the Toyota Yaris

4.0 rating

4 / 5 Gumtree rating

The Toyota Yaris perfects three things – fuel efficiency, reliability and safety. What more could city dwellers ask for?