Awesome Auris

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Toyota would be the first to admit that the old Auris was not quite as good as it should have been, and in the fullness of time it is now the turn of a new version to raise the stakes.

There is very little carried over from the old model in practical terms.

Even the bare bones of the chassis and bodyshell are now built in a different way, with stiffer materials and extra spot welding for better handling.

The interior is much changed, too, with a different and rather more spacious layout.

A lower centre console combined with an unusually big glove box and a capacious central storage bin make the new Auris a good deal more practical, even if the door pockets are a bit restrictive.

Importantly this model immediately feels more solid than the last, with a good mix of chunky materials and a very welcome overall sense of robustness.

On the outside the design has moved away from the relatively tall stance of old to a new, sleeker and aerodynamically sounder shape.

The roof line is 55mm lower than its predecessor’s and it rides 10mm lower at chassis level. Head room is unaffected, thanks to seats mounted 40mm lower than before.

Toyota will build the Auris in a quartet of new trim levels. Customer focus groups and market analysis have told Toyota that it is time to ditch the old system and go for something new.

The end result is a range starting at Active, rising to the mainstream Icon and then diverging slightly into Sport and Excel.

Excel is the best-equipped, plushest and costliest specification level, but Sport has the sharper 
detailing that many buyers want.

This is arguably the sweetest Auris of the bunch, with a terrific balance of handling, fuel economy, ownership costs, build quality and refinement.

It asks the question whether
 you need anything more, and the answer is an emphatic no..