Back in 2014, Toyota Motor Philippines (TMP) introduced their challenger to the hot-selling A-segment market – the Wigo. Since then, it has become one of TMP’s best-selling models, along with the Vios and Innova. The thing is, competition grew fierce, so Toyota had to keep it looking fresh and hip against its competitors. They rectified that by giving the small hatchback was given a makeover in 2017. No doubt, the facelift helped keep sales of the Wigo going strong.
Now, three years after its first facelift in 2017, Toyota has updated the Wigo’s design once again. Compared to the previous update, the design changes are not as extensive as the first one. That said, Toyota made an effort to make it look more aggressive this time around. At the same time, TMP added a host of tech as well.
The question now is whether the new styling and more features continue to make the 2020 Wigo an affordable model? More importantly, is it still the same city car we first got to know in 2014? Well, to find out, I suggest you read on as we review the 2020 Wigo 1.0 TRD S AT.
For starters, the variant. The TRD S is not an optional package that TMP offers for the 2020 Wigo. Instead, it is part of the lineup and is the new range-topping variant. Styling-wise, it looks just like the updated Wigo featuring a new front bumper, headlights, and taillights. On top of that, it does get a TRD exclusive front lip, side skirts, rear bumper extension, and tailgate spoiler. There are also TRD S stickers on the side and a badge at the rear. Some may not like the stickers and badge, but at least it helps you stand out among the rest, assuming the TRD S exclusive yellow paint is not loud enough.
Unfortunately, the wheels that come with the TRD S variant are not TRD units. These are still the standard 14-inch alloys fitted on the 1.0 G variant. If you want to have the more stylish set of TRD wheels, you will have to look elsewhere and, it's a rather expensive option. I’m just curious as to why TMP didn’t package the TRD wheels with the TRD S variant. No doubt that would have help completed the look.
On the topic of styling, Toyota also made changes to the interior of the Wigo for 2020. The seats and dashboard remain the same. But, the seat patterns have been updated and feature a more stylish black and red design. Those patterns are also on the sidings and even the rear seats. In front of the driver, a new instrument cluster with a multi-info display that now illuminates in orange. Like before, there is a lot of storage spaces inside the car plus cupholders (even though they are a bit small). But, a center armrest would have been nice especially, with this range-topping variant. Fortunately, you can get one as an optional extra.
No doubt, the best features in the cabin is on the center console. Gone is the old touchscreen head unit, replaced with a new infotainment system that comes with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. Yes, the Wigo now has Apple CarPlay and Android Auto…but only for this TRD S variant. Below the infotainment system, the knob-style air conditioning controls are gone. Now, it has a digital climate control unit. Together with the infotainment, these two new features alone already make the Wigo feel very upscale.
For the TRD S variant, a Toyota branded dashcam, a push start button, and power-folding mirrors are part of the package. You may think a dashcam is not that essential, but in times like these, you may not know when you'll suddenly need it. More importantly, it can be helpful in the unfortunate event of an accident and even claiming insurance. Meanwhile, power-folding mirrors just make life a lot easier.
There are a lot of upgrades inside and out. However, what Toyota didn’t change is the engine. Under the hood, it still uses the same 1.0-liter three-cylinder mill with VVT-i technology. Power is still rated at 66 PS and 89 Nm of torque, with transmission options being a 5-speed manual or a 4-speed automatic. However, this particular TRD S variant is exclusively available with a 4AT gearbox.
With the engine carried over, it drives very much like the pre-facelifted Wigo. Power is more than adequate for going around Metro Manila and can get off the line easily. It is by no means fast, but do remember this is a city car and not a hot hatchback. Strangely, the automatic transmission does take its time to upshift and downshift between 2nd and 3rd gear.
Despite the small issue of shifting and the fact that it is an older 4-speed automatic, the Wigo still has a very impressive fuel economy. According to the trip computer, I managed to average around 11.2 km/L with this quarantine traffic. On the expressways, those figures go up to 18km/L. I assume it could do even better when fitted with a continuously variable transmission (CVT) instead of the 4-speed gearbox.
On the topic of expressways, the 2020 Wigo does not have a lot of range. Even though it is very fuel-efficient, it only comes with a small 33L fuel tank. As a result, you can’t get very far on a single tank of gas. Then again, Toyota did intend the hatchback to be a city car instead of going on long road trips.
Back in the city, the small size makes it easy to maneuver in tight parking spaces. On the road, there is a noticeable amount of body lean and a floaty ride due to the soft suspension. However, it is by no means unstable. It remains planted on the road when changing lanes at high speed or doing an emergency maneuver. Even with the additional TRD S body kit, the ride height isn't too low; so no need to worry about scraping.
There are some small issues we wish Toyota addressed with this updated model, such as the vibrations and the addition of a seat height adjuster. But all the extra features do make the Wigo a better city cruiser. The infotainment system alone is a huge upgrade with the addition of Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. Add in the rest of the new features, and the Wigo now feels more upmarket; a tall order in the A-segment market. With this 2020 Wigo TRD S, Toyota has managed to do just that.
As with all things, there is a catch to all that refinement – the price. For 2020, the Wigo, in this new 1.0 TRD S A/T trim, retails for PhP 700,000. That's over a PhP 100,000 increase compared to previous top-spec 2017 Wigo 1.0 G A/T which sold for PhP 599,000; a huge jump. But compare it to the price of the 2020 Wigo 1.0 G A/T, it is only a PhP 42,000 difference.
For that PhP 42,000, you do get a lot of extra features such as the Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integrated infotainment, push start system, and dashcam. Not to mention a more stylish exterior design plus the option of having a very yellow paint job at no extra cost. However, at PhP 700,000, it is bordering close to the entry-level Vios price tag. So, you have to decide whether you need something practical or just something to get from A to B in style.
The 2020 Wigo 1.0 TRD S A/T is perfect for those that want an everyday city car that offers a bit more flair and refinement among the rest. Sure, for just a little bit more, you could get a larger more practical Vios. But, it won’t have the same amount of features and creature comforts this small hatchback has to offer. As someone who finds style and tech important, the Wigo sure has my money.