The redesigned Toyota Yaris gets the company's first application of a new platform for small cars that aims to spice up driving dynamics in the gas-sipping, utilitarian runabout.
And on the outside, the next-generation Yaris sports expressive new looks for a peppy new persona, with large front air intakes, dramatic side creasing and flared rear fenders.
Toyota unveiled the reworked car at the Tokyo Motor Show. It said the fourth-generation update will go on sale in Japan in February. Also going public at the show was a redesign of the Yaris' top domestic rival, the Honda Fit.
The Yaris adopts the Toyota New Global Architecture platform for small cars, which brings a lower center of gravity and a lighter, more rigid body. The new Yaris is about 110 pounds lighter than the outgoing version.
It has Toyota's latest 1.5-liter, three-cylinder Dynamic Force Engine. The engine is offered as a standalone option and is also mated to an electric motor in a hybrid variant.
The hybrid version is optioned with Toyota's new E-Four electric four-wheel-drive system.
The Yaris will employ Toyota's newly developed Direct Shift-CVT, a fuel-efficient continuously variable transmission the company says provides more responsive acceleration.
Toyota did not provide details about when the car will reach markets outside Japan.