2018 Toyota YarisShould you buy? Well, it depends..
The 2018 Toyota Yaris is still hanging on as a top competitor in the subcompact car class. Despite having an extremely outdated transmission and a noticeable lack of space, the Yaris has a lot of things that drivers love, including a huge list of standard safety and technological features.
What's New for 2018?
Overall, not a ton has changed between 2017 and 2018. New for this year is an overall more athletic appearance. Also, the instrument panel found on the SE is now found on the L and LE trims as well.
Top 10 Reasons to Buy a 2018 Toyota Yaris – The Pros
1. Many Standard Features
The 2018 Toyota Yaris comes packed with standard safety and tech features. Bluetooth, a 6-speaker sound system, a USB port, and a 6.1-inch touchscreen panel are some of the standard infotainment features you will find on the Yaris's base L trim. The mid-level trim (the LE) adds cruise control and remote locking and unlocking of the doors. The highest trim level (the SE) packs a premium punch with its LED running lights, leather trim, and 7-inch touchscreen display.
2. Plenty of Rear Leg Room
Although space is a bit crowded elsewhere in the vehicle, there is a surprising amount of legroom in the rear. Taller passengers won't have too much trouble getting comfortable in the back.
3. Brakes That Won't Easily Fade
The brakes on the 2018 Toyota Yaris seem to be pretty predictable and long-lasting. You can make an emergency stop from 60 mph in a stopping distance of 123 feet, which is good for a subcompact car. Also, the brakes don't show much fading over time, which is usually a common issue on subcompacts.
4. Functions Well in Urban Areas
The 2018 Toyota Yaris might not perform well on the highway, but it works well in the city. It is small and can navigate between tight spaces. It's easy to park in a crowded parking lot or cramped space in a parking garage.
5. The 5-Speed Manual Transmission Smoothly Shifts
If you get the Yaris and want a bit of a powerful performance, opt for the 5-speed manual transmission. It shifts smoothly between gears, feels confident, and does not seem to have much trouble finding gears. Also, the clutch-take up has a very natural feel to it.
6. Entune's Interface is User-Friendly
The Entune infotainment interface that appears on the touchscreen display is quite user-friendly, which is an improvement over what you will find on some of the Yaris' competitors. Most of the buttons are easy to find and are clearly labeled. The screen itself does not seem to be overly sensitive or non-responsive. In addition, climate controls are also extremely easy to use.
7. Easy Entrance and Exit
Getting into and out of the 2018 Toyota Yaris is a breeze for most people. The front doors are rather large, and getting in is made easier thanks to the elevated hip point. With the plentiful rear legroom and wide rear doors, getting in and out is just as easy in the back as it is up front.
8. A Good Amount of Frontal Visibility
Drivers will find that the massive windshield and lengthy side windows up front give plenty of forward visibility. The pillars up front are slender enough, too. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for rear visibility.
9. Smooth Steering
The steering on the 2018 Toyota Yaris feels very refined. It is straightforward and responds well, making it more engaging than the steering on some of its competitors. Steering the Yaris feels precise.
10. Precision Handling
Handling is also extremely precise on the Yaris. The vehicle is naturally light on its feet, and its handling is made even stronger thanks to its secure grip on the road and ability to navigate turns without too much body roll.
Reasons Not to Buy a 2018 Toyota Yaris – The Cons
1. The 4-Speed Automatic Transmission Feels Antiquated
The biggest drawback of driving the 2018 Toyota Yaris is the fact that Toyota is putting an outdated 4-speed automatic transmission into this vehicle. While most other automakers are putting higher-powered powertrains in their subcompacts, Toyota is sticking with the sluggish 4-speed as its automatic-of-choice for the Yaris.
2. Not A Lot of Cargo Space
Unfortunately, you won't get much in the way of cargo space in this subcompact. The Yaris skimps on cargo space, so you will have to be creative with how you tote your groceries and other bulky items around.
3. Steering Wheel is Tilt-Only
Many automakers opt for the highly-adjustable tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel these days. The fact that the Yaris' is tilt-only makes the vehicle feel even more outdated. Drivers will have a more difficult time finding a comfortable driving position without the telescoping ability of the steering wheel.
4. A Sluggish Engine
Not only is the 4-speed automatic transmission extremely clunky and outdated, but the engine is sluggish and antiquated as well. This engine only generates 106 hp, which is some of the worst that you can find on any newer vehicle. If Toyota wants to remain in the subcompact competition, it is going to have to slap a better powertrain on the Yaris.
How it stacks up to the competition:
2018 Toyota Yaris vs. 2018 Honda Fit
The 2018 Honda Fit bests the Yaris in almost every aspect. The Fit has a relatively strong powertrain for a subcompact, is extremely comfortable and shockingly spacious throughout, and has a more well-put-together interior appearance. It has also received some nice upgrades thanks to Honda's new global platform, which elongates the wheelbase and slightly widens the vehicle. It also gives the Fit a more finely-tuned suspension. Its brakes, however, might be less resistant to fade, and the infotainment system can be downright confusing.
2018 Toyota Yaris vs. 2018 Chevy Sonic
The 2018 Chevy Sonic received a lot of exciting upgrades for the model year, including MyLink radio and a bold new color scheme. The Sonic's engine generates 138 hp, which is adequate for the class and is a vast improvement over the Yaris' meager 106 hp. There is also a turbocharged engine that offers great fuel economy.
The 2018 Toyota Yaris earns points for its user-friendliness and fade-resistant brakes. The Yaris, however, is significantly outdated, both in terms of its appearance and its performance. There are subcompacts out there that offer more in the way of a powerful performance and creature comforts.
• Why buy a 2017 Toyota Yaris? w/ pros vs cons