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2011 Toyota Yaris Maintains Fuel Efficiency, Safety
New year updates to the 2011 Toyota Yaris are few and far between. Outfitted with the same engine and exterior design, car shoppers can expect to achieve the same great gas mileage offered by the 2010 model. Learn what's new on the 2011 Toyota Yaris and compare the pros and cons of this economy car.
What's New - 2011 Toyota Yaris
Last year's Toyota Yaris was praised for its high number of standard safety features. Toyota builds on this reputation with the addition of a standard brake override system. This feature cuts fuel to the engine when the brake is applied. Available sun visor extensions on select models and a nominal price inflation of $250 round out the updates for the 2011 Toyota Yaris. Given the minor changes made to the vehicle, shoppers on a budget may be interested in looking into a slightly used 2010 Toyota Yaris model.
2011 Toyota Yaris Styling
Given its bargain-basement price, the Yaris delivers decent quality in terms of styling. Though by no means a trend setter, the small, rounded silhouette of the Yaris appeals to a broad audience. Models are available in both hatchback and sedan configurations. The hatchback design is intended to create a sporty look while maximizing interior cabin space. While this intent is achieved for the most part, one can't help but think the Yaris build quality is a bit on the cheap side.
Inside, a nearly non-existent standard features set and use of lackluster build materials may leave some shoppers longing for a better-equipped vehicle. However, as a whole the Yaris offers competitive fit and finish when compared to similarly priced competitors. Of course, opting for an upper-tier model also helps mitigate some of these complaints.
In terms of comfort, the Yaris does a good job of accommodating front seat passengers. Rear seat passengers, on the other hand, will no doubt feel cramped (though this is a common complaint for the compact vehicle class). Trunk space is mediocre for the class. Hatchbacks offer a maximum of 25.7 cubic feet, while sedans make do with a maximum of 13.7 cubic feet.
2011 Toyota Yaris Performance
Fuel efficiency is a definite advantage of the 2011 Yaris. EPA estimates suggest a maximum of 29 mpg in the city and 36 mpg on the highway. However, it should be noted that this efficiency comes at the expense of engine power. The sole engine option available is a 1.5-liter four-cylinder that makes 106 horsepower. While not underpowered, acceleration and high-speed driving may not be quite up to snuff for some drivers. However, for the most part the Yaris delivers adequate performance for the typical around-town driver.
As a whole, steering is responsive. However, engine noise is noticeable - especially at high speeds. Car shoppers looking for maximum engine performance should opt for the five-speed manual transmission.
2011 Toyota Yaris Safety
The Yaris is an all-star in the compact class when it comes to standard safety features. All 2011 models come equipped with anti-lock brakes, electronic brake-force distribution, brake assist, brake override technology, traction control, stability control and six airbags.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has yet to perform crash tests on the 2011 Yaris. However, the nearly identical 2010 model earned a best-possible rating of "Good."
2011 Toyota Yaris Prices
The Yaris comes with a base price of $12,855. For that price, you'll get air conditioning and a tilt steering wheel. A Power Package can be added for $1,500, and includes such add-ons as power windows and locks. A Convenience packages adds 60/40-split rear seat, stereo with CD/MP3 player, satellite radio and an auxiliary jack. Other top-tier features worth noting include cruise control, fog lights, sport seats and iPod integration.
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