The Toyota C-HR is an interesting, refreshing and genuinely good addition to the crossover class.

The difference between ‘good’ and ‘very good’ for this car might have been a more rounded, big-selling engine.

Matt Saunders Autocar

Matt Saunders

Road test editor
Avant-garde crossover gets everything right apart from the engine

Toyota’s latest 1.8-litre hybrid powerplant would probably have struggled to motivate any car of this size and type, but throw it in one that’s cast as youthful and exciting and it’s way out of its depth.

And yet Toyota has impressed us with this car – wheezy, monotone powertrain and all. Creating a crossover that stands out for its dynamic sophistication is a tall order these days and getting tougher all the time.

Doing that on a vehicle that also so plainly shows the effect of time and effort lavished on its styling and cabin is an even greater feat.

Although it is not quite a class leader, the C-HR feels like the product of a giant of the global car industry getting out of its seat on the periphery of the European market to up the ante.

Given the announcements made by the company in recent weeks about more involving engines, it’ll be fascinating to watch what happens next.

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Although for now the C-HR is fifth on our list of crossovers, with the Renault Kadjar, the Skoda Yeti, the Nissan Qashqai and the Seat Ateca all having the edge over the Toyota.

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