Is the Yaris Cross a good fit in PH?
The first half of the year has been relatively quiet for Toyota Motor Philippines. They haven't launched a single new model yet, which is a stark contrast to 2022 when they rolled out plenty of new models such as the Raize, RAV4 Hybrid, Corolla Cross GR-S, Lite Ace, the GR 86, the Avanza / Veloz, and so on and so forth.
It may be that TMP could be brewing something for the second half of 2023. Apart from the all-new Innova and Wigo, there could be a third new model coming to the country.
We have spotted that Toyota Motor Philippines received approval for a passenger vehicle with an exact displacement of 1,496cc – the equivalent of a 1.5-liter engine. In the Toyota engine family, the numbers point out to the 2NR-VE / FE; the unit that powers vehicles like the Avanza / Veloz, the current-gen Vios / Yaris, and the Lite Ace.
The aforementioned vehicles already exist in the Philippine market, and manufacturers don't exactly apply for approvals unless it's for a new variant, a new transmission, and yes, an entirely new model.
What's also of note is that TMP got approval for two passenger vehicles with 1.5-liter engines that differ in curb weight by about a hundred kilos – one has a curb weight of 1250 kg, and the other weighs 1365kg. Numbers-wise, that's around B-segment crossover or B-segment sedan territory, and the difference in weight leads us to believe the heavier one could be a hybrid that's carrying an extra electric motor and a battery pack.
So which all-new Toyota model has a 1.5-liter hybrid? Well, you guessed it right – the DNGA Yaris Cross. Aside from the standard 2NR-VE, the all-new DNGA Yaris Cross was also launched with a 2NR-VEX, which is an electrified powertrain.
Much of this is still conjecture, but what we're telling you right now is that there are signs the DNGA Yaris Cross is coming to the country. When? Well, your guess is as good as ours.