There was once a time when SUVs were only driven by off-roaders. Now SUVs have become so popular that a whole host of crossovers have been developed to combine the curves and driveability of a smaller vehicle with the higher ride height and commanding presence of an SUV, and the Toyota CH-R is one such vehicle.
The team over at Autocar decided to take the Toyota C-HR on a test drive, one that would last six months to truly understand how it performs as an everyday A-to-B machine. So, how has it fared?
The first thing to mention is styling. Even among a sea of crossovers, the Toyota C-HR is extremely distinctive. The front end is aggressive, the creases are deep and bold, and the vanishing rear window line lends the vehicle a look of speed even when its standing still.
So far, reviewers have praised the extensive standard feature line-up. Instead of making you pay through the nose for creature comforts, models like the Excel include features such as keyless entry, automatic lights and wipers, rearview camera, built-in satellite navigation, and 18-inch wheels as standard.
That said, it was noted that “connectivity falls short of the class best”. Toyota vehicles still haven’t adopted Apple CarPlay or Android Auto, and their own infotainment system isn’t really up to scratch. CarPlay and Android Auto are so common in new cars that it’s a little odd to be missing them entirely.
Performance has been good so far, but Autocar complained about the lack of stop/start. It’s when you lack that feature that it’s efficiency boost really comes into focus. As noted by Autocar: “Our regular urban trips mean efficiency is suffering; on a recent seven-mile journey in London the C-HR returned only 23.7mpg.” Overall, driving dynamics were described as “both quiet and comfortable” and “plenty quick enough”. That’s nice, but we’d expect such an aggressively styled vehicle to offer a little more oomph.
Overall, the Toyota C-HR drives well and looks fantastic, and it has proven comfortable during even the longest of journeys. Standard features are also strong. On the downside, the dated infotainment system is a glaring problem, and efficiency isn’t great in the city. But, as summed up by Autocar themselves, “none of this can prevent the C-HR from being a hugely capable crossover.”