What is it?
The 2014 Toyota Verso. Which is a compact MPV, in case you’re not immediately sure. Many, we suspect, won’t be.
That’s because Toyota has still got a job to do to establish itself with the young family buyers who keep the European MPV market ticking over. For evidence of that, simply ask the average UK motorist what a Picasso, a C-Max or a Scenic is, and whether a Verso deserves a mention in the same sentence.
It does, as it turns out – and especially after Toyota’s latest facelift, principally because it’s the first Toyota to feature the maker’s new 1.6-litre turbodiesel engine licensed from BMW, in place of the old 2.0-litre D-4D. Toyota’s engineers have made a few hardware and software changes to the engine, mated it to its own six-speed manual gearbox and conjured 108bhp, 199lb ft, 119g/km and 62.8mpg from it. Those figures put the Verso right in among the most fuel-efficient, cheapest-to-run seven-seaters on the market.