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First Drive: 2018 Toyota C-HR

New subcompact crossover designed to appeal wide audience.

by on Mar.10, 2017

The 2018 Toyota C-HR is designed to appeal to younger buyers looking for fuel efficiency and utility.

Conventional wisdom suggests American consumers don’t have much use for small vehicles — except for small crossover utility vehicles, and that is an awful big exception as carmakers move to offer new models that are certain to attract new buyers into small vehicles.

The 2018 Toyota C-HR, for example, was originally designed to fit into the automaker’s Scion line. But with Scion’s demise, Toyota expects the newest vehicle in its portfolio to appeal the youthful demographic of 20- and 30-something buyers with its contemporary styling, sophisticated technology, fuel-efficient performance, maneuverability and overall utility.

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The new C-HR was also designed as global vehicle – the one coming to the U.S. will be assembled in Turkey – It is built around one of Toyota’s new modular architectures and was basically can fit into heavy traffic anywhere or out onto back roads in Europe and North America. (more…)

Toyota C-HR Makes Debut in LA

Japanese maker's small ute is just the latest in a parade of compacts.

by on Nov.17, 2016

Toyota unveiled its new small ute, the 2018 C-HR, at the L.A. Auto Show.

Even with the price of gasoline hovering a bit over $2 per gallon, small crossover vehicles are becoming increasingly popular with young buyers in big cities across the United States.

With sales of subcompact utility vehicles growing, Toyota used the Los Angeles Auto Show to introduce the 2018 Toyota C-HR – the initials stand for coupe high rider – which is scheduled to go on sale in the U.S. next spring.

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The new C-HR sits on subcompact 103.5-inch wheelbase with a 70.7-inch track and is a little more than five feet tall. But it can carry five passengers, comes a flat lead floor and represents a major “volume opportunity” for the Japanese automaker, according to Toyota executives, who noted the all new crossover vehicle is expected to attract young “fashion-forward, trendsetting” owners. (more…)

Toyota Tumbles; Operating Profits Plunge 43%

Weakness in North America, currency shifts hammer Japanese giant.

by on Nov.08, 2016

The new C-HR could be a critical addition for Toyota.

Toyota Motor Corp.’s operating profit earnings took a 43% plunge during the July to September quarter, the world’s largest automaker struggling in the face of numerous headwinds. Net income, meanwhile, slid 36% for the quarter.

The growing strength of the yen was one problem for the Japanese giant. But the automaker also faced challenges in North America where the overall automotive market is slipping after the strongest recovery in history. Complicating matters, Toyota has been overly dependent on lower-profit passenger cars, such as the Camry and Corolla, as higher-margin trucks have been gaining momentum.

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“Supply has not kept up with demand” for more profitable models like the Toyota RAV4 and Highlander utility vehicles, acknowledged Executive Vice President Takahiko Ijichi, something that has led Toyota to trim its outlook for North America for the rest of the fiscal year ending March 31, 2017.


Now Badged Toyota, C-HR Crossover to Make Debut at LA Auto Show

Compact model to challenge the likes of Honda HR-V, Nissan Juke.

by on Nov.03, 2016

The little C-HR will be back in LA wearing a different badge than it bore at the 2015 show.

We got a first look at the little C-HR concept vehicle at the 2014 Paris Motor Show, and it has bounced back and forth across the Atlantic a number of times. But the production version is finally set to make its debut at the 2016 Los Angeles Auto Show two weeks from today.

Expect to see a few key changes from the original show car. Some of the radical angles and edges are likely to be softened a bit. And it’s not clear whether there will be a hybrid drivetrain available, unlike the original concept which was said to share the familiar Prius Hybrid Synergy Drive.

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But the most significant change – at least for the U.S. market, might take a sharp eye to spot. When the C-HR concept landed at the 2015 L.A. Auto Show, it was wearing a Scion badge. With that youth-oriented brand now tossed onto the automotive scrapheap, the little crossover now will be wearing the Toyota logo all over the world.


After Slight Detour, Toyota C-HR Finally Makes its Debut

Planned for Scion brand, compact crossover finds a new home.

by on Mar.01, 2016

Toyota? Scion? With the upcoming demise of the Scion brand, the subcompact will carry the mother brand's badge.

Not many vehicles have seen so many detours even before being put into production, but at least the new C-HR concept has finally found a home.

The compact crossover has bounced and forth across the Atlantic several times since making its debut at the 2014 Paris Motor Show. And it was finally expected to make its appearance in production trim at the Detroit Auto Show earlier this year. The one hitch: it was going to wear a Scion badge, but parent Toyota decided to pull the plug on its struggling youth brand.

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So, the crossover is back in Europe yet again. But this time, it’s badged the Toyota C-HR, and that’s what buyers on both sides of the big ditch will finally be seeing when it makes its way into showrooms later this year.


Toyota C-HR Moves Closer to Production

Concept crossover features new, advanced hybrid system.

by on Sep.15, 2015

Toyota appears to be moving closer to entering the compact crossover segment with the latest C-HR.

Toyota is driving into Frankfurt with a new small crossover and a new design language.

A year after unveiling the original C-HR concept, the Japanese maker is back with an updated design that appears to be a step closer to production. The updated version of the Toyota C-HR also appears to help the Japanese maker pull together in a cohesive whole some of the design details it has been showing off in other recent offerings, including the new Camry and Corolla models.

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“This highly innovative design study for a stylish, lightweight and dynamic hybrid crossover is designed to stand out in an increasingly homogeneous marketplace,” Toyota declared in a release describing its plans for the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show.


Paris Motor Show Asks: How Low Can You Go?

High-mileage ultracars fill the Paris show floor.

by on Oct.06, 2014

The Toyota C-HR is one of several super-efficient concepts shown at this year's Paris Motor Show.

Audi is making plenty of news at this year’s Paris Motor Show, including the debut of its 400-horsepower TT Sportback Concept, but at the other end of the display, the German maker has unveiled the new A6 Ultra, a new version of its popular, midsize sedan line that can deliver up to 56 miles per gallon, a number normally associated with smaller hybrid models.

With gas prices running as high as $9 a gallon in parts of Europe, motorists have put a premium on fuel efficiency, but regulators are about to ratchet up the pressure even further. European automotive rules focus on grams per kilometer of carbon dioxide emissions, rather than miles per gallon, and what is already the world’s toughest mandate could soon get a lot tougher.

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The current rule calls for European automakers to cut the carbon dioxide emissions of their typical vehicle to just 95 grams per kilometer by 2020 – roughly equal to the 54.5 mpg CAFE standard that will go into effect in the U.S. by 2025. But regulators are giving serious thought to lowering emissions levels to just 65 to 75 g/km. (more…)

Toyota Teases C-HR Crossover Concept

"Innovative vision" could signal new Scion cute-ute.

by on Sep.16, 2014

Toyota offers up a teaser silhouette of the C-HR concept crossover coming to the Paris Motor Show.

Toyota helped define the small crossover when it launched the original RAV4 two decades ago. Now it’s apparently getting ready to take things a step further with the “innovative vision for a compact crossover” it will introduce at the Paris Motor Show in less than a month.

The Japanese reveals the new model has been dubbed the C-HR, and it’s offering up this teaser silhouette image, but beyond a few gushing platitudes, it is providing few specific details.

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Among other things, we learn from its news release, the Toyota C-HR marries “a new design language with an engaging driving experience and a hybrid powertrain.”