The perennial best-seller from Toyota Motors Philippines (TMP) has been made better and safer. Say hello to the 2019 Toyota Vios. Sporting a similar look as the Yaris hatchback, the all-new B-segment four-door gets a slightly more aggressive design and now comes with more safety features and in-car amenities. Like its hatchback sibling, two engine choices are available for the 2019 Vios; a 1.5-liter four-cylinder Dual VVT-i and a 1.3-liter four-cylinder Dual VVT-i. Transmission choices include a five-speed manual and a CVT with a seven-speed manual select. Should one opt for an even sportier-looking Vios, both 1.3 E and 1.5 G models can come with a bodykit and a rear spoiler via the 'Prime' models.
Whenever we post a story about the Vios, be it about a new model, a review, or even a race, the most common comment is this: Taxi.
Scoffing at the idea of the Toyota Vios as a taxi is odd: since when has being the default choice for taxi fleets become a bad thing? Remember when the 'Big Body' and 'LoveLife' Corollas used to populate our roads en masse as taxis? Often, these cars were not in perfect, ideal, or even passable running order. Yet they still ran despite the dings, dents, and rattles along the way.
That is where the success of the Vios also lies: proven reliability and dependability, easy-to-maintain mechanicals, plenty of spare parts, and admirable fuel economy. The result is a reputation that it can take you to your destination, no matter the distance, or its condition. And now, we have a new model, and now we get to test this new taxi... er, Vios 1.3J.
Ah yes, the Toyota Vios. If I were allowed to change its tagline, I'd switch it to 'It's Everywhere'.
Since 2003, Toyota's subcompact sedan has been a common sight on our roads. In fact, it was the country's best-selling car from 2006 to 2017, only beaten out by the Fortuner last year. This year, there's a new Vios and you can expect it to be a best-seller. But is it any good?