Toyota Yaris

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Toyota Yaris Stop-Start

Road Test

Toyota Yaris Stop-Start

Driven May 2009

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It's all happening at Toyota right now. The F1 team is finally picking up a few points, but without the help of KERS - the supposed ‘green' tech of Formula One - at the same time as the company posts its first financial loss. Meanwhile, the road cars get stop-start tech for the first time. One of the first cars to benefit is the facelifted Yaris, which gets it as standard. And, guess what? The stop-start doesn't work very well.

The bare figures are impressive though. Compared to the old 1.3-litre petrol, this new 1.33-litre engine's CO2 has been reduced by 22g/km to 119g/km and mpg figures are up from 47.1 to 55.4. Along with the new six-speed gearbox and exterior re-style, this is all good.

The stop-start is less impressive, like most other systems we've tried bar BMW's and Mini's. If it's under 10°C and you want the aircon on, then the engine will only stop for about three seconds before it fires back up again. Otherwise the engine will get too cold.

But even when it's over 10°Cand the aircon is working, the Yaris still only pauses for three seconds to ensure you stay cool and the car starts again. It's comfort versus environment. The system works OK when the aircon is turned off, but that's not the point. For a car that's sold everywhere, you need stop-start to work when you want the aircon, especially when it's fitted as standard.

Piers Ward

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