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Verso: MPV of choice

2009-09-16 09:22

The new Toyota Verso combines true multi-purpose vehicle practicality and flexibility with the comfort and driving performance of a passenger vehicle.

The Verso history goes back to the Toyota Space Cruiser introduced in 1984, a vehicle that established Toyota as a pioneer in the then new MPV segment. TMC entered the ‘C’ segment of the MPV market for the first time in 2002 with a vehicle that recognised that something more than just flexible interior packaging would define this market sector going forward as MPV customers became more demanding and discerning in their choice of vehicle.

The first generation Corolla Verso launched in 2002, and the second generation model that followed in 2004, were both heavily influenced by contemporary passenger vehicles. This latest model has been given the designation C-MPV by Toyota to underscore the Verso’s increased independence as a vehicle in its own right, rather than a simple extension of a passenger car range.

With its flexible seating configuration for up to seven occupants the new Verso is set to continue where the old one left off as a vehicle of choice for the family unit. It is not surprising then that it is this sector that is likely to account for the majority of sales. The new Verso is however also expected to meet the needs of ‘empty nesters’ that look to the attributes of a dynamic multi-purpose vehicle to support their active lifestyles.

The new Verso has been formulated to meet these potentially diverse needs by offering practicality together with style and performance. It presents itself as a lifestyle choice capable of meeting family transport needs at a particular stage of life, as well as a practical and flexible transport solution for the progressive mainstream motorist.

Key to this is Toyota’s ‘Dynamic Lounge’ concept that combines exciting and contemporary exterior and interior styling to provide exceptional space utilisation, comfort, practicality and flexibility. The ride quality, dynamic ability, and NVH performance are more akin to a conventional passenger car than a traditional MPV.

An all-new interior layout offers more space and utility storage. Improvements to the Toyota Easy Flat-7 seating system offer a higher level of comfort and easier operation. Particular focus has been placed on enhancing the seating accommodation in the second and third rows of seats.

With the introduction of the new Verso comes an extension of the range from three to four variants with the option of diesel power for the first time in South Africa. Toyota’s Optimal Drive technology features across the range of petrol and diesel derivatives and offers an increase in power of up to 20% together with reductions in CO2 emissions and fuel economy of up to 12% compared to the older generation engines. The 1.6 litre and 1.8 litre petrol engines boast Toyota’s state-of-the art Valvematic technology.

The designers of the new Verso have excelled in producing a vehicle that boasts class leading aerodynamic performance with a drag coefficient of just Cd 0,295. The longer wheelbase, increased track both front and rear, and extensive revisions to the suspension geometry offer superb driving dynamics with improved handling, stability and ride comfort.

The new Verso also offers class leading occupant and pedestrian safety features. At the heart of this is a highly rigid, impact absorbing body shell incorporating a large percentage of high tensile steel. The new Verso has been engineered to fulfil the stringent Euro NCAP 5-star safety criteria.

The new Verso is built by Toyota Motor Manufacturing Turkey at its modern Adapazari manufacturing facility, a facility that boasts an exceptional reputation for build quality. This facility has been the subject of a 1 billion Euro (12 billion Rand) investment programme over the past few years.


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