If I were to describe the Yaris as a person, I would call her a diamond of the first water that would make Daphne Brigerton jealous.
The Yaris has looks that would fit a girl’s book as “cute”. And as much as I don’t want to acknowledge it, we girls are a little more visual than function, and the Yaris’ sharp lines and squinty headlights would definitely make us take a second glance to check it out like we couldn’t help checking out a good-looking guy.
For example, I know of a girl who bought her Toyota Yaris purely based on looks. Fortunately, the girl hasn’t reached the stage where she has to think about a second child yet, so a four-seater Yaris would still fit her bill.
However, I’m sure that the Yaris’ sharp design and muscular shoulder lines don’t just appeal to the fairer gender, the male community would also find the Yaris’ look sporty and futuristic depending on the colour.
You have to admit that the blacked-out C-pillar just gives the Yaris an added touch of coolness compared to rivals like the Honda City Hatchback and even the Mazda 2 Hatchback.
2021 Toyota Yaris Interior
While the exterior is an overall visually pleasing package, the interior meanwhile will not be winning any awards.
The best way to describe the 2021 Toyota Yaris interior is ‘traditional’. The all-black interior is broken up by navy highlights and a few strategically placed chrome bits.
It has all the important buttons and functions ergonomically arranged making it an easy get-in-and-go car. To add on, there are also simple things like setting the trip computer or pairing smartphones, things that can become unnecessarily complicated, but not with the Yaris, where there is almost zero learning curve.
While it’s not the most inspiring interior, it is comfortable thanks to how well Toyota has insulated the car. And I’m not exaggerating here, our tests recorded an average of 63 dB at 90 km/h and 68 dB at 110 km/h.
Impressive numbers for a B-segment hatchback priced at RM 87,600 on the road without insurance. Note that the unit you’re looking at is the G variant with all the bells and whistles such as 7 airbags, blind spot monitor, 360-degree parking camera, forward collision warning and a touchscreen infotainment with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.
As a person who has tested the pre-facelift version, I have to applaud Toyota for quickly jumping on the bandwagon of Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. As I remember I didn’t have the best experience with the pre-facelift’s Mirrorlink connection and it’s not the most reliable system either.
2021 Toyota Yaris Ride and Handling
When I tested the pre-facelift, I was blown away at how comfortable the car drives. And yes, I would describe the way the car drives as ‘comfortable’. Hear me out.
Toyota has tuned the Yaris’ steering wheel to feel perfectly weighted in both a traffic jam and for a nice enjoyable cruise along the highway. The car just feels very effortless in both situations. While it might not be the sportiest steering, it does the job well as a city cruiser.
Another point that the Yaris is a city cruiser is that the car is not that fast. On paper, the 2021 Toyota Yaris has a power output of 107 PS and 140 Nm, way lower than rivals like the City Hatchback (121 PS/ 145 Nm) and the Mazda 2 Hatchback (114 PS/ 149 Nm).
In fact, the Yaris' 107 PS/ 140 Nm output is comparable to the Myvi's 103 PS/ 137 Nm. However, the Yaris is slower in timed acceleration runs.
In our tests, the 2021 Toyota Yaris did the 0-100 km/h sprint in 14.5 seconds. The in-built Sport mode didn’t help the car go any faster either. The number is actually about four seconds slower than our tests done on the Perodua Myvi at 10.7 seconds.
So, the Toyota Yaris is not a fast car, but it is fast enough for your daily needs. Case in point, during the few days that I spent with the Yaris, there was not much need to go fast as I covered mostly city driving that includes a lot of stop-go traffic.
However, the car is perfectly capable of providing me with the burst of speed to carry out an overtake when I needed it and that was about the only time when I really pushed the car.
There’s also the fact that the Yaris is so comfortable that it induces you to prefer driving at a sedated pace rather than rushing to your next destination.
But that’s not all, the Yaris’ suspension is tuned to be so supple that it feels like it has the ability to iron out potholes like the most high-powered steamer iron from a brand more expensive than Tefal.
I wish this was an exaggeration but it isn’t. Even if there’s a particularly uneven set of roads, the Yaris will seemingly iron out the jarring sensation before it reaches your body.
2021 Toyota Yaris fuel consumption
Surprisingly when it comes to fuel consumption, the Yaris is not the most fuel-efficient car in the segment. In our tests that include a mix of highway cruising and mostly stop-go traffic, our tests returned 7.9 l/ 100 km after a total distance of 108 km.
During our tests our drive route at the time had unusually bad traffic, so there was a lot of time spent idling. Also note that the tests include three 0-100 km/h sprints between refuels, so perhaps this has pushed the fuel consumption up.
2021 Toyota Yaris safety features
Other than being an effortless car to drive, the Yaris is not short on safety equipment either. Safety equipment includes:
- 7 airbags
- Blind Spot Monitor (BSM)
- Rear Cross-Traffic Alert (RCTA)
- Lane Departure Alert (LDA)
- Pre-Collision System AKA Forward Collision Warning (FCW) in more generic terms
While this is not the complete set of safety equipment, however, you get 7 airbags even on the base J variant priced at RM 73,800. The lower spec City Hatchback only gets four airbags while six airbags is only available on the V variant onwards where prices start at RM 87,856. If you want Honda Sensing ADAS, you have to fork out RM 91,708 and more.
There is also the convenience of a 3D Panoramic View Monitor (PVM) for when you’re entering tight spaces. Unlike the pre-facelift, the front digital video recorder (DVR) comes as standard for the G and E variants, previously it came as an optional add-on.
2021 Toyota Yaris warranty
Like all vehicles sold by UMW Toyota, the Yaris also comes with a 5-year warranty with unlimited mileage. Over a period of 5 years, the accumulated cost to maintain the Yaris will be RM 4,010.
2021 Toyota Yaris colours
Unfortunately, UMW Toyota has done away with the Citrus Yellow that was available in the pre-facelift when they updated the car last year. However, in its place, UMW Toyota made a new red colour available known as Red Mica Metallic.
Red Mica Metallic is sold alongside two other colours: Platinum White Pearl and Silver Metallic.
Priced at RM 84,808 on the road without insurance, the 2021 Toyota Yaris is not without fault. If I have to complain about something it would be that only the driver’s side has a keyless entry lock button which makes it really inconvenient when you’re trying to load things from the passenger side.
The only other lock button is located next to the boot-lid button and it’s a tiny speck that requires a bit of finesse to reach it.
But overall, the Toyota Yaris is easy to just jump in and drive much like a car from the ‘90s, perfect for those who prefer a fuss-free car with bulletproof reliability, it is a Toyota after all.
No, it might not be the fastest car in the segment, but with how comfortable the car is it makes you want to cruise to your next destination instead of rushing to the end of the journey.