What is it?
This is the 1.6-litre petrol powered version of the facelifted Auris, linked to a six speed gearbox. It is expected to be the range’s best-seller, although Toyota has set optimistic predictions for the Auris hybrid that is coming later this year.
The facelifted Auris has undergone some mechanical tweaks, plus minor interior improvements and visual changes to bring it in line with the latest Toyota look.
Key to the mechanical changes are retuned dampers – with testing including running in the UK – and changes to the electrically assisted power steering, to improve its feel.
What’s it like?
The Auris has always been tagged as being good without being great, and it is going to take more than a mid-life facelift to put it on a par with, say, the VW Golf for refinement or Ford Focus for driver involvement.
However, the facelifted Auris is a more compelling proposition than it was, and the 1.6-litre engine is by far the best unit in the range. While the 1.33 struggles for guts and is thrashy out of town, and the 1.4 diesel is gruff, the 1.6 delivers acceptable performance and refinement in all conditions.
With 130bhp and a 0-62mph time of 10sec it is never going to get your pulse racing, but it does combine useful performance with decent average fuel consumption of 42.8mpg and 146g/km of CO2. The gearchange is easy and precise.