Richard Bremner
8 January 2013

What is it?

A relocated battery pack, improved refinement and sharper styling boost the appeal of this second-generation Auris Hybrid.

The battery now lives under the rear seat, freeing up the boot while still allowing it to be elongated by dropping the backrests. Toyota modified the Auris’s carry-over platform to achieve this. The roof (and therefore the centre of gravity) has also been lowered and the steering is quicker than before in the quest for sharper responses, which should be better handled by this version’s double wishbone rear suspension. Lesser Aurises have a twist beam.

What is it like?

The changes make for a more athletic hybrid Auris on the road, but this version loses some of the deftness of the conventional 1.6 petrol. On the test car’s bigger wheels, it didn’t ride as well as the 1.6, either.

The infamous whining band-saw revvings of the 1.8-litre Hybrid Synergy Drive powertrain have been reduced, but this slightly unnatural sound is still there and doesn’t exactly encourage you to stretch the car’s legs. The engine gets an Eco mode, which gives you a better chance of scoring a heart-warming economy figure, although you’re unlikely to see 70mpg. You also have up to 1.2 low-speed miles in EV mode.

Should I buy one?

It all adds interest to a complex car, although you might end up preoccupied by the cliff-like structure and cheap detailing of the unprepossessing dashboard. It’s perfectly functional but not great to look at, somewhat spoiling this otherwise usefully upgraded Auris.

Toyota Auris Hybrid Icon

Price £19,995; 0-62mph 10.9sec; Top speed 112mph; Economy 76.3mpg (combined); CO2 87g/km; Kerb weight 1370kg; Engine 4 cyls, 1798cc, petrol plus electric motor; Power 134bhp (combined); Torque 105lb ft at 4000rpm (petrol), 153lb ft (electric); Gearbox CVT

Join the debate


Can Auris do 65mpg?

1 year 40 weeks ago

Couple of years ago I had a chance to drive Toyota Prius as a company car. Over 6k miles I averaged 56mpg in mixed urban and motorway driving. A smaller and more aerodynamic Auris could perhaps deliver well over 60mpg?

The car doesnt appeal to me

1 year 40 weeks ago

The car doesnt appeal to me at all, but at less than £20K it does look very good value. 

Looks good...but is it good enough?

1 year 40 weeks ago

Toyota has definitely improved the design for this MPV I must say and after reading the review I am not sure as to if I should get the car.The suggested economy is good and so is the power and torque.The car has caught my attention because of the cheap price and better looks.I'd say at about 20 grands,I wouldnt mind purchasing this car.Toyota has so far done a decent job launching this car.But as always we expect a bit more.


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Eeek! £20k for a Corolla?!

1 year 40 weeks ago

I'd rather a BMW, thanks

£21,095 and much better quality interior (admittedly though a manual not auto at this price point)

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85 kW [116 hp]
74.3 mpg 
CO₂ emission 99.0 g/km  

Is this not basically one of

1 year 40 weeks ago

Is this not basically one of those horrible Lexus things?


1 year 40 weeks ago

My god. With a name like that, i don't think any amount of antibiotics are going to do the trick.

natalie212 wrote: Toyota has

1 year 40 weeks ago

natalie212 wrote:

Toyota has definitely improved the design for this MPV I must say

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It seems a pity that they've put in an independent multu-link rear suspension system and yet made the ride worse somehow. Not easy to do. And the dashboard is hard to accept. But it's pretty good value and would probably be just what a lot of people need. I think it could take sales from the Prius though. Surely there must be a new Prius just around the corner.

isn't the new Prius predicted

1 year 40 weeks ago

isn't the new Prius predicted to be a 4 wheel drive car

Battery now lives under the rear seat?

1 year 40 weeks ago

Hummm,, So where is the fule tank now?

Under the front seats like the Honda perhaps?

One of my favorite car it is

1 year 40 weeks ago

One of my favorite car it is I really love to drive it .Business Logo Design|Landing page by|Flash Banner Design Online|

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Our Verdict

The Toyota Auris is a spacious, but unspectacular attempt at a high quality Golf rival. Only the availability of a hybrid lifts it from obscurity

Driven this week