Toyota Aygo X
Find a solution!
The solution of most car manufacturers is simple: they offer compact cars with zero emissions and so the emission penalty is zero. That is why most small cars are now electric. Toyota, however, was looking for another solution and found it in sharing technology with a larger model.
While designing the Toyota Yaris the components were made in such a way that they could be reused in a smaller model. The Aygo X therefore sits on the same platform, butÂ shortened. Also, many of the substructures (about 25%) could be shared and that makes a big difference in development and production costs.
To distinguish itself from its competitors, and to follow the trend in the market, Toyota chooses a high-stance build. The Aygo X is a so-called "Crossover" (passenger car with influences of an off-road vehicle) and that explains the "X" in the name. By choosing large wheels and an adjusted chassis, the Aygo X has an easy entry and a slightly higher seat (+55 mm compared to the previous Aygo). Moreover: thanks to this construction the Aygo X looks very tough, and that is a nice perk!
Space and equipment
According to Toyotaâs research the back seat of the Aygo is rarely used, so when developing the new Aygo X most attention went to the space in front. The headroom in the front is good and the front seats can be pushed so far back that even tall drivers can hardly reach the pedals! The "price" of this is obvious: the space in the rear is limited and even access to the back seats is difficult due to the shape of the rear doors.
When it comes to equipment, the emphasis is on safety. The simplest version offers little luxury, but a lot of safety. This is thanks to the fact that the Aygo X is technically a small version of a larger car. The Aygo X can detect danger (including cyclists) and intervene if necessary, warn when the lines on the road surface are crossed, assist in an evasive manoeuvre and read traffic signs. Adaptive cruise control, automatic high beam and a reversing camera are also available.
Yet it is noticeable that one safety feature that is used almost every trip is missing: the Aygo X has no blind spot detection. Because the C-pillar (bar between the rear side windows and the rear window) obstructs the view to the rar, this would have been a welcome feature. Another point of criticism: the seatbelts are not adjustable in height and the one-piece seats do not fit everyone well.
The more luxurious versions are fitted with an integrated audio, communication and navigation system that functioned properly during the test. Small points of criticism are the lack on automatic zooming in and out during complex traffic situations and the strangely high pitched voice of the English-speaking guidance. Optionally an audio system by JBL is available that, for a small car with ditto price, delivers a stunningly good (detailed, full, spacious) sound.
The engine of the Aygo X is in essence the same as that of the previous Aygo, but everything around it has been revised. Despite, this remains a conventional petrol engine in a time where electric or at least hybrid propulsion is now the norm. This means that although the Aygo X is economical to buy, it is not economical to use.
To make the Aygo X cheap to buy, savings have been made on weight and therefore also on sound insulation. Not only is the three-cylinder clearly audible, but also noises from outside can be heard. When the choice is made for the version with a canvas roof, sounds from outside can be heard even more clearly in the cabin.
In theory, the optional automatic transmission with "continuously variable transmission" (CVT) should be the most comfortable and frugal version, however, during this test the opposite happened. As soon as the throttle is pressed, the revs shoot up. With the manual gearbox has greater control over the engine and the way it develops its power.
Regardless of the gearbox chosen, the performance is sufficient. In the city, the 72 PS / 93 Nm power output is enough to easily keep up with the traffic flow. Second gear deliberately offers sufficient suppleness to almost come to a standstill and then drive off again without shifting down. On country roads the three-cylinder engine has to work hard to gain and maintain speed. Going uphill at 100 km/hr even requires downshifting and constant flooring of the accelerator. A demanding test route with differences in altitude and city traffic, but very low average speeds, cost 5.0 litres of petrol per 100 km with the Aygo X CVT. The same route took 4.7 litres with the manual version.
The Aygo X is not only taller than average, but it also has more ground clearance. That is both an advantage and a disadvantage. The greater ground clearance also means a higher centre of gravity and that is noticeable in fast corners. Stability is a little less than that of lower cars (including the previous Aygo) and therefore the Aygo X is less playful around in the city. The limited width and small turning circle do make the Aygo X agile in the city.
The greater ground clearance ensures that speed bumps or bad road surfaces can be taken with more ease. Moreover, this set-up provides more comfort and that is certainly very welcome in the city!
Toyota introduces a new model in the smallest and cheapest segment and that is remarkable. Most car manufacturers don't offer such cars anymore because fines on CO2-emissions make the sale and use of such cars hardly profitable. Toyota, however, saw this problem coming a long time ago and in the design of the compact Yaris already considered the reuse of parts for the smaller Aygo X. In this way, many costs could be saved.
The result is a car that is not innovative, but based on existing resources it does fulfil all the requirements and wishes that make a small car (too) expensive nowadays. The Aygo X does not do more than other small cars, but does offer the latest in luxury and safety at a reasonable price. Toyota also responds cleverly to the demand for crossovers, which makes the Aygo X look good too. For those who are looking for a small car with proven technology, Toyota's ruse therefore works out well.
- Successful design
- Familiar technology
- Rich, modern equipment
- No blind spot detection
- Moderate comfort seats on long distances
- Cheap in the short term, not in the long term