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A mostly very grown-up small car, but also an expensive one

If the small car was a species of animal, it may not be critically endangered, but it would certainly be classified as vulnerable. So a new member of the species is very welcome, but we’re unconvinced that Toyota’s approach is the way forward for the segment.

For the most part, the Toyota Aygo X is an excellent small car. The interior is value motoring perfected. It’s not especially roomy, but the design is playful, the ergonomics are exemplary and all the tech you could want is either standard or available as an option. The chassis and the refinement are up to the standards of the class above, too.

However, the engine has seen service in every generation of the Aygo and it’s woefully underpowered by 2022 standards. A manual gearbox that’s great to use keeps it drivable, but it’s not a good look when rivals offer turbocharged options.

The Aygo X’s biggest problem, however, is the price. The most basic version can just about justify its asking price, but plusher variants are very expensive indeed, and at that price point, the sluggish performance and tight interior space become more grating.