As the name suggests, the Toyota Yaris Cross is a version of the popular Yaris
hatchback bulked up to provide access to the, even more popular, compact SUV

Launched here in late-2020 Yaris Cross is available in both two-wheel drive and
electric all-wheel drive variants in three grades: GX, GXL and Urban all with the
choice between petrol or hybrid drivetrains.

A fourth variant, and our test vehicle, the GR Sport, was added in October 2022 but
only as a 2WD hybrid.

Yaris Cross shares the distinctive styling of the Yaris hatch, the Cross SUV carries a
sense of robustness and high-riding demeanour favoured by buyers of bigger
genuine off-roaders.

Its bold face features a split grille with a lower diffuser, flanked by deep-set LED
daytime running lights and slimline headlight clusters, while at the rear a squared-off
rear hatch suggests a practical purpose.

Likewise, at the rear, the broad horizontal lines connecting the integrated taillights
and squared-off rear hatch suggest a robust and practical attitude.

GR Sport sits between GXL and top of the range Urban grades and can be identified
as a part of the GR family thanks to its newly designed black grille with the distinctive
‘G’ mesh pattern found on other GR Toyota sports models.

The same mesh pattern is applied to the rear bumper, with a sporty rear diffuser
featuring four vertically oriented aerodynamic fins.

Unique 18-inch alloy wheels with a twin-five-spoke design and bright machined finish
also help to differentiate GR Sport from the rest of the Yaris Cross range, housing
sporty red brake callipers complete with GR logos on the front brakes.

Black mirror caps and GR badging front and rear complete the set of visual exterior

While the platform of the Yaris Cross is only slightly longer and wider than that of the
Yaris hatch, it features a substantially longer, wider and taller body to maximise
interior space.

While the larger body translates into an airy space for five occupants, but the three in
the rear shouldn’t be on large side.

Inside, the GR Sport is immediately identified by unique seats featuring synthetic
leather on the bolsters and perforated black suede-like upholstery in the centre, with
contrast light grey stitching on the seats and steering wheel.

GR logos adorn the headrests, steering wheel and smart keys, while aluminium
pedals provide a race-inspired look.

The front seats have also been redesigned for a more dynamic look and greater

Ornamental gun metal trim highlights are applied to the shift knob, instrument panel
moulding and inner door trim, while suede-like material is also applied to the door
trim inserts.

The Urban and GR Sport variants come with nanoe X air ionisation technology which
helps to inhibit unwanted pollutants and viruses from the cabin.

Boot space in the 2WD Yaris Cross is 390 litres but down to 314 litres in the AWD
with a clever split floor for extra storage. The 2WD gets a space-saver wheel but the
AWD only a tyre repair kit.

The hybrid system for front-wheel drive versions of the Yaris Cross, including the GR
Sport, combines a 67 kW / 120 Nm, 1.5-litre three-cylinder, Atkinson Cycle petrol
engine and two motor generators on the front axle putting out a combined 85 kW.

AWD hybrid Yaris Cross models gain a third electric motor to drive the rear wheels in
slippery on- or off-road conditions.

All variants get a continuously variable transmission with a mechanical first gear for
strong take-off. A 10-speed sequential shift function that can be operated by the shift
lever, or paddle shifters on the steering wheel.

All Yaris Cross models come with the latest version of Toyota Safety
Sense technology include a pre-collision safety system with day / night pedestrian
and day cyclist detection, emergency steering assist, lane trace assist and lane
departure alert with steering assist, intersection turn assist, automatic high beam,
road sign recognition and adaptive cruise control.

Standard equipment also includes eight airbags including two between the front seat,
reversing camera, parking sensors, seatbelt warning and Isofix child seat anchors.

GXL and above add a blind spot monitor and rear cross traffic alert.

The 7.0-inch infotainment touchscreen is pretty basic with physical buttons and
knobs on the edges to access the most used functions. The air conditioning controls
sit below the screen.

There’s a neat Multi Information Display in front of the driver with two raised round
displays on the sides of the 4.2-inch screen.

The system has AM/FM/DAB+ radio, full Bluetooth connectivity, Apple CarPlay and
Android Auto with enhanced voice activation and delivers premium audio through six
speakers. There’s a single USB-A in the centre console of the GX and GXL with a
USB-C added in the Urban and GR Sport models.

Satellite navigation with the SUNA traffic channel is standard on variants above GX.

Although its under 4.2 metres in length, clever packaging makes it feel like a much
larger vehicle. Its relatively easy to get into the front seats although a bit more
difficult for rear entrants.

The GR Sport tag is a bit misleading because, although it adds plenty of styling
enhancements, there’s no difference in performance from the other Yaris Cross

There have been adjustments to the tuning of the suspension which added extra
firmness that was quite noticeable when we encountered bumps during the rural
component of our drive route.

Claimed fuel consumption from the 2WD Yaris Cross Hybrid is listed at 3.8 litres per
100 kilometres. We averaged a still impressive 4.6 L/100km during our week in the
GR Sport.

The Yaris Cross is a neat, compact and attractive compact SUV with excellent safety
and 10 variants from which to choose. Pricing is very competitive with the extra
$2000 for the hybrid technology well worth considering.

Whether the glammed-up GR Sport is the best choice is debatable and we’d
recommend doing a comparison between it and the other variants especially looking
at the harsher ride.

Standard warranty is five years with unlimited distance with the powertrain increased
to seven years if it is serviced on time. Service intervals are 12 months or 15,000

1.5 GX petrol: 2WD: $27,840
1.5 GXL petrol 2WD: $30,840
1.5 Urban petrol 2WD: $33,840
1.5 GX Hybrid 2WD: $29,840
1.5 GXL Hybrid 2WD: $32,840
1.5 Urban Hybrid 2WD: $35,840
1.5 GR Sport Hybrid 2WD: $35,840
1.5 GX Hybrid AWD: $32,840
1.5 GXL Hybrid AWD: $35,840
1.5 Urban Hybrid AWD: $38,840
Note: These prices do not include government or dealer delivery charges. Contact
your local Toyota dealer for drive-away prices.

SPECIFICATIONS (Toyota Yaris Cross 1.5 GR Sport Hybrid 2WD)

Capacity: 1.490 litres
Configuration: Four cylinders in line
Maximum Power: 67 kW @ 5500 rpm
Maximum Torque: 120 Nm @ 3800 rpm
Fuel Type: Standard unleaded petrol
Combined Fuel Cycle (ADR 81/02): 3.8 L/100km
CO2 Emissions: 86 g/km

DRIVELINE: Continuously variable automatic

Length: 4185 mm
Wheelbase: 2560 mm
Width: 1765 mm
Height: 1580 mm
Turning Circle: 10.6 metres
Kerb Mass: 1200 kg
Fuel Tank Capacity: 36 litres

Front: Ventilated disc
Rear: Solid disc

Five years / unlimited kilometres

Looks: 9/10
Performance: 7/10
Safety: 9/10
Thirst : 9/10
Practicality: 7/10
Comfort: 7/10
Tech: 8/10
Value: 8/10

About Alistair Kennedy

Alistair Kennedy is Automotive News Service and Marque Publishing's business manager and the company's jack-of-all-trades. An accountant by profession, he designs the Marque range of motoring book titles, operates the company's motoring bookshop on the NSW Central Coast and the associated web site, as well as its huge digital and hard copy database. Whenever we can escape from the office he does so to cover new vehicle releases and contributes news stories. Alistair's other interests include cricket and family history on which he has written three books.
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