The Toyota Verso-S is a successor to the unexpectedly popular Yaris Verso. Launched in the UK in 1999, the Yaris Verso remained on sale until late 2005, during which time it sold over 10,500 units in the UK. It was decided that the second generation was too similar to the standard Yaris to sell well in the UK, hence the many years without a B-segment MPV in Toyota’s line-up.

The concept of a supermini MPV is not a new one. There are a number of variations on the theme on offer today, among them the Honda Jazz, Citroën C3 Picasso, Kia Venga, Nissan Note and now Toyota is taking them on with the new Verso-S.

On paper the Verso-S looks like a good entrant in this niche in the supermini market. It is less than four metres long, has a pretty roomy cabin and seemingly ticks all the boxes that will matter most to prospective (and most likely older) buyers – with both comfort and affordability top of that priority list. It’s as well that the 1.33 VVT-i petrol version isn’t expensive to run, since it’s the only engine option available.

So there’s one engine, but two trim levels, both reasonably specced: the TR and the more luxurious T-Spirit. By the standards of its limited direct rivals, the Verso-S appears very competitive. But with a list price that puts it up against plenty of models besides mini-MPVs that offer a broad array of talents, the Verso-S needs to do more than just meet the standards of its niche segment to stand out.

Top 5 MPVs

First drives

Find an Autocar car review

Explore the Toyota range

Driven this week

  • Citroen C11.2 Puretech 82 Furio
    First Drive
    29 September 2016
    Citroën's city car gets a new sporty-looking trim level, adding visual adornments, but no premium for the 1.2-litre Puretech triple we're driving
  • Mercedes C350e Sport
    First Drive
    28 September 2016
    Petrol-electric C-Class is a surprisingly well-priced alternative to a diesel but not the greatest example of the new ‘PHEV’ breed
  • Car review
    23 September 2016
    Aston kicks off its ‘second century plan’ with an all-new turbo V12 grand tourer
  • Ford Ka+ 1.2 Ti-VCT 85
    First Drive
    22 September 2016
    A rounded, refined and well-sorted bargain supermini – once you’re used to the confusing role redefinition imposed on the once-cheeky Ka
  •  Maserati Ghibli Diesel
    First Drive
    22 September 2016
    Maserati releases another range of updates for its range best seller, the Ghibli. We've driven the diesel version, but there's little improvement on before