Toyota thinks big with small cars

* IQ city car on sale early 2009 * Urban Cruiser small 4x4 coming * Both will be displayed at Geneva motor show...

Toyota thinks big with small cars

Toyota will showcase its new small city car, the IQ, and a new small 4x4, the Urban Cruiser, at next month's Geneva motor show.

Toyota IQ
The IQ will be shown as a production model, following its debut as a concept car at last year's Frankfurt motor show, and is expected to go on sale in the UK in early 2009.

Less than three metres long, the car has room to accommodate three adults and one child. A sweeping dashboard design and compact centre console allows the front passenger seat to move far enough forward to fit an adult in the rear seat behind.

However, although Toyota says the car is ready for production, it hasn't announced what engine will power it. Speculation suggests it could be a compact 1.0-litre unit featuring stop-start technology to keep emissions down.

There's no official word on prices, either, but insiders say emissions-saving technology will mean it costs more than the Yaris, at around 8500.

Toyota Urban Cruiser
Toyota will also showcase the Urban Cruiser, a small 4x4 that will sit in its range below the RAV4.

It is based on the Toyota Ist and Scion XD, which are sold in Japan and the USA respectively, but features some minor changes to its styling.

Company insiders say it will be powered by a 105bhp 1.5-litre engine mated to a continuously variable transmission. It will be available in front- or four-wheel drive versions.

Toyota concepts
Toyota will also showcase the 1/X Plug-in Hybrid Concept, which utilises flexible fuel technology and shows how the next Prius may look.

Also on show is the i-Real personal mobility concept car, which was shown in Tokyo last year.