New Toyota Yaris Cross 2021 confirmed for Australia! Handsome SUV coming to give Mazda CX-3 and Hyundai Venue a headache

Toyota’s newest SUV is already confirmed for Australia, with the just-revealed Yaris Cross to arrive in Australia in late 2020.

The addition of the Yaris Cross will see Toyota’s SUV family grow to seven models, which will now kick off with the high-riding hatchback, step up to the C-HR, the RAV4, the Prado, Kluger and Fortuner, before finally landing on the LandCruiser. It also gives the Japanese brand a competitor in the micro-SUV class, where it will battle vehicles like the Hyundai Venue and Mazda CX-3. 

The brand’s huge success with the hybrid RAV4 clearly hasn’t gone unnoticed in Japan, and the Yaris Cross will be offered with an available petrol-electric drivetrain and all-wheel drive. The Yaris Cross will share its hybrid drivetrain with its hatch sibling, which means you can expect a 1.5-litre petrol engine combined with a battery and electric motor to drive down fuel use, with power outputs of around 74kW and 169Nm. There will also be a non-hybrid version of the 1.5-litre engine on offer, paired with a CVT transmission.

Inside, expect a floating screen that’s both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto equipped, availlable ambient interior lighting and 10.0-inch head-up display system, climate control and seat heating, as well as what Toyota is calling its “big-small” packaging concept, which promises a relatively spacious interior.

Like the Yaris hatch, revealed at the Tokyo Motor Show, we expect the Yaris Cross to arrive with standard adaptive cruise control, high and low-speed auto emergency braking (AEB), and a new lane keeping system with highway centering technology, courtesy of the Toyota Safety Sense systems, which “are designed to help support safe driving practices by providing driver information, early warnings and, when necessary, automatic braking and steering intervention”.

Riding on the brand’s GA-B compact car platform, Toyota is promising body rigidity and chassis balance that focuses on handling, which sounds like the Yaris Cross – like the C-HR – will tap into the brand’s new-found focus on driving fun. 

While pricing is yet to be confirmed, Toyota is promising the Yaris Cross will be “affordable”, and the brand also maintains it will be a “genuine SUV”,  with 30mm more ground clearance than the Yaris, and it’s a total 90mm taller and 20mm wider than its hatchback sibling. For reference, the cheapest C-HR is $29,450, which should see the cheapest Yaris Cross land in the early $20,000s.

“Yaris Cross is a stylish and flexible vehicle for people with active lifestyles who appreciate the strength, space and high-riding qualities of an SUV at a scale that suits their daily need to negotiate city streets and laneways,” says Toyota Australia’s vice-president of sales and marketing, Sean Hanley.