Toyota Yaris Cross long-term test: report 2

The Toyota Yaris Cross is the most efficient car we've ever tested, but now our car reviewer is finding out if there's more to this small SUV than just thrifty motoring...

Toyota Yaris Cross rear right cornering

The car Toyota Yaris Cross Design Run by Max Adams, Reviewer

Why it’s here To provide ULEZ-busting travel, save money on running costs, find out if hybrid power is a viable option for someone who can't charge their car at home

Needs to Prove that it is as efficient as our True MPG test promises it to be, and be as trouble-free as Toyota’s reputation suggests

Mileage 2085 List price £26,530 Target price £25,187 Price as tested £25,641 Test economy 53.7mpg Official economy 62.7mpg

9 April 2023 – Bootiful

Owning and maintaining my old car for as long as I did meant I acquired quite a few tools along the way, but most of them are going to waste now thanks to my new Toyota Yaris Cross and its lack of problems.

Instead of doing the sensible thing and selling my kit, I’m hoarding it and finding other cars to work on – such as the 18-year-old Mini Cooper S belonging to my Autocar colleague Illya Verpraet. Its crusty brakes looked likely to fail an upcoming MoT, so I offered to fit new ones.

Long term Toyota Yaris Cross as a mobile mechanic van

However, for various reasons the car couldn’t come to me, so I had to get myself and all the tools I’d need to it. The question was, would my Yaris Cross be big enough to work as a mobile mechanic's van?

I needn’t have worried, because it swallowed the lot in its surprisingly big boot. That’s borne out by our group test where we pitched it against the Ford Puma and VW T-Roc. The Yaris Cross can swallow seven carry-on suitcases, or as I’ve discovered, all the bits you need to change the discs and pads on an old Mini.

Filling up a Yaris Cross with jacks, axle stands, sockets, ratchets and impact wrenches does add a fair amount of weight, so the engine in the poor thing did have to rev quite a bit to maintain motorway cruising speeds on uphill sections. That probably explains why my fuel economy has taken a bit of a dip.

Long term Toyota Yaris Cross full boot

When loading up my tools, I did notice that there’s a bit of a drop from the loading lip to the boot floor, making hoiking in heavy items a bit trickier than on cars with less of a drop to the floor.

The top-spec Toyota Yaris Cross Excel has a variable height boot floor to fix that, and it looks as though the side mouldings to support it are present around the perimeter of the load area in my Design trim car. So I’m wondering whether it's possible to order one as a spare part from a dealer and cheekily retrofit it, instead of spending extra for an Excel trim car. I’ll let you know what I discover...

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