Friday, October 4, 2013

Car Spots: Third Generation Toyota Vios

Car Spots aims to showcase newly introduced vehicles in which if these vehicles are competitive enough to play basketball with current vehicles. It will also give you our initial impressions on a certain vehicle which means this is not a full length review.

Our second vehicle to be featured here is the third generation Toyota Vios, whose taxi image is being shunned for something funky looking. July had passed and three months later, let's see if this vehicle is still fresh.

Photos are still taken using my cellphone camera. Toyota Vios G unit spotted at SM Megamall.

Awkward chubby styling no more; the Vios had grew in size and sports sleek lines. Think of it as a Camry that was shrunken but without being mistaken for one. The Metropolis would be littered with good looking taxis which both drivers and operators be happy for the Christmas season. I have no idea whether this design would age gracefully. Want orange? You have to order the 1.5 G. Before anything else, the rims are same for E and G grades with color coded door handles while the J gets black door handles and steel wheels with hubcaps.

There are numerous improvements that the Vios had and the notable among them all is the migration of the gauges from the center to right where it should be, in front of the driver. The X-Trail and the Spark had them in the center before but learned to place it in their proper location. Apart from the gauges, the interior is wrapped in black and beige plastics and the fake stitched leather is an awkward scene especially with the two tone color theme (the Crosswind has a similar motif, but no expensive bag inspired stitches present). Other than the two, cup holders are now the pull type than the flip ones and the air-con vents aren't anymore the spin type. The radio is the floating type which bade goodbye to the integrated system of the previous model, making a switch to a touch screen radio possible. Airbags, two of them, come standard for all variants. Cabin space is still excellent, not anymore the awkward occurrence of the front occupants and thanks to a redesigned front seats that benefit rear occupants.

Call it old, but the 1.3 and the 1.5 engines can chug along especially they have power in the low range and can drive at any point without any stress. Of course, fuel efficiency is tops.

Since this one is battling it out with established rivals, the Vios has its own advantages and disadvantages. The 1.3 E makes do with the same amount of kit minus the leather touches on the steering wheel, projector lamps, and speakers mounted on the A-pillar. For the safety conscious in you, dual airbags come across the range which some competitors make do with one or virtually none. It is sulit in its own way.

Shunning its taxi cab image is a long way to go, but with the third generation Vios it makes some steps closer. Then, proving you are reliable is a feat on itself. For sub-compact buyers, this vehicle must be present on your shopping list.

Many thanks to:
Toyota Cubao - (02) 981-6168

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