Fleet News

First Drive: Toyota Verso 2.0 D-4D Icon

Toyota
BIK List Price
£21,390
Toyota Verso BIK list price
BIK Percentage
19%
Toyota Verso BIK Percent
CO2
129g/km
Toyota Verso CO2
Combined MPG
57.6
Toyota Verso MPG

Review

Fleet officials are to join forces with dealer network staff to launch Toyota’s next new car to thousands of small companies across Britain.

Toyota GB thinks its latest Verso multi purpose model has ‘significant’ potential with smaller fleets and is looking to Business Centre dealers to take a leading role in boosting its market share when sales begin in the next few weeks.

“On the face of it, we’re not tasking ourselves with greater volume but we do have a good story to tell and our 70 centres hold the key to a big opportunity that we’ve missed in the past. Some of them hold data on up to 10,000 SME customers,” revealed fleet brand manager Sara Lawler.

“This move will help us achieve all our volume through the right outlets – we intend to protect residuals by steering clear of daily rental business.”

Speaking at the launch of the car in France, company president Jon Williams told Fleet News that fleet sales would represent 60 per cent of the 3,300 annual Verso registrations anticipated over the next three years.

But he added: ”With a lower entry price and an improved specification, this is a better value proposition than the previous car. The overall sales target is conservative – it’s one I would expect us to beat.”

Substantially revised to have smarter looks, better quality and higher performance, the Verso adopts Active, Icon and Excel trim levels with the mid-grade version expected to account for 85% of sales.

Costing £165 less than its predecessor, the seven-seat car blends higher economy with a 10g/km drop in emissions to 129g/km - improvements claimed to deliver annual fuel and benefit tax savings of up to £650 for drivers and a reduction of as much as £1,500 in annual ppm costs for companies.

Generous Icon equipment provides 16-inch alloy wheels, dual-zone climate control, a multi-media screen, DAB radio, a rear parking camera, cruise control, privacy glass and retractable mirrors as standard. Also included is the impressive Easy Flat rear seat folding system that drops squabs and backrests into the floor with the minimum of fuss. As well as offering 32 different seating configurations, the well-engineered system provides a flat platform with 1,696-litre load volume when it is tucked away.

Quieter running and with greater pull at low revs, the latest D-4D motor has a wider torque band for more relaxed progress. An easy main road cruiser, it uses a new turbocharger that helps it work with commendably low noise at all speeds.

Thanks to more rigid bodywork, suspension and steering recalibrations promote more cornering agility and smoother ride characteristics, even when only lightly loaded.

By Maurice Glover

Driver appeal
This may not be the most potent two-litre engine around, but it produces its power in notably smooth and refined fashion. A wider torque band means it is also delivered at lower revs to extend top gear flexibility.
Fuel costs
A major overhaul means Toyota’s ubiquitous two-litre diesel motor achieves the same performance on less fuel and combined economy up from 53.3mpg to 57.6mpg.
CO2 emissions
Unlike rivals, the Verso is not equipped with stop-start, but modifications that include a revised water pump, faster warm up and reduced friction have produced a 10g/km reduction in tailpipe emissions to move the car into a lower VED band.
Residual values
Residuals have always been a key element of the Verso – it’s the leader of the C-segment MPV pack – and performance and specification improvements promise to strengthen this position.
FN Verdict
Toyota has supplied more than 50,000 examples of the Verso since the compact MPV was launched in 2002. In a major revamp, the third-generation version features changes to more than 470 components to boost versatility, comfort and refinement – and reduced operating costs also boost its appeal to fleets.
Top Speed
N/A
Toyota Verso Top Speed
VED band
N/A
Toyota Verso Ved
Fuel Type
Diesel
Toyota Verso Fuel Type
Residual Value
3 Year 60k : N/A
4 Year 80k : N/A
Running Cost (ppm)
3 Year 60k : N/A
4 Year 80k : N/A

CO2 emissions and fuel consumption data correct at time of writing. The latest figures are available in the Fleet News fuel cost calculator and the company car tax calculator.

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