New Toyota Verso revealed

* More versatile than ever * Toyota says it's better to drive * On sale April, from around 15,000...

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Jim Holder
24 February 2009

New Toyota Verso revealed

This is the all-new Toyota Verso seven-seat MPV.

It goes on sale in April, and will be shown in the metal for the first time at the Geneva motor show next week.

Toyota says the car is entirely new, including an improved Flat-7 seating system that allows all five of the rear seats to be folded flat. In total, Toyota says there are 32 seating variations possible.

It will go on sale with a choice of 1.6- and 1.8-litre petrol engines and a 2.0-litre diesel, all of which will be mated with a six-speed manual gearbox as standard. However, the 1.8-litre petrol engine will have a six-speed automatic 'box as an option.

A 2.2-litre diesel linked to a six-speed CVT gearbox will join the line-up at a later date.

Although exact figures haven't been released, Toyota says power from the reworked engines is increased by up to 20%, while fuel economy and emissions have been improved by up to 12%.

Emissions are reduced by a drag co-efficient of just 0.295, which helps the car cut through the air efficiently.

Toyota has also widened the car's front and rear, and revised its suspension to improve handling, body control, stability and ride comfort.

Other changes include the addition of stability control plus curtain airbags that extend to the third row of seats as standard.

No prices have been released, but they are expected to start from around 15,000.