The Toyota Etios is the most frugal yet reliable car you can buy in India. Backed by Toyota’s goodwill and strong service network, Etios hardly had any direct competition. Little wonder then that this particular car model has been a favourite of Ola and Uber operators. While the looks are subjective, the Etios kind of struggled to cater the needs of the of the family car buyers due to the lack of design flair. Especially, the car’s speedometer looks absolutely cheap and flimsy. It looks as if Toyota got it made from some toy sweat shop in China.
Thankfully, this time around, Toyota decided to spice things up a little in the 2016 refresh. Unveiled in Brazil as the 2016 Etios Platinum, it will soon hit the Indian market. What we see up front is a redesigned bumper with a small curvy grille housing the company logo. Fog lights housed in large black air dams give it a more prominent stance. Side profile gets a minor upgrade in the form of a sporty side skirt.
The rear gets a lip boot spoiler. Redesigned rear bumper with a sporty character. The larger 8 spoke machine finished alloy wheels go well with the silky silver paint job. All these changes have added to the looks of the current Etios.
The dashboard layout with piano black finish has been carried over from the ongoing model. The centrally mounted instrument cluster, which we are not a huge fan of, now houses the digital speedometer and rpm meters. The earlier models have analogue speedometers. The odd arrangement of the AC vents is retained. Toyota should have made some improvements here. Don’t expect the automatic climate control, as as the old school rotary dial can be clearly seen in the pictures. The steering now resembles to this car’s elder sibling, the Corolla. Other changes worth mentioning are the introduction of infotainment touchscreen system and cruise control in the high-end variants.
As far as the handling goes the current model has a very light steering unit. The suspension setup though well balanced is a bit on the softer side. Engine expected to remain the same with the oil burner 1.4 litre and a petrol 1.5 litre unit. A slight increase in its retail value could be a possibility once it’s launched. We hope Toyota has addressed these issue’s and made some improvement’s in the handling department to make it perform and go faster to compliment its sporty looks.