According to Toyota’s European top dog Didier Leroy, the automaker’s new Toyota Verso-S is one small car that’s long on space and with plenty of smart packaging that Toyota believes will make it stand out in its segment.
At roughly 157 inches long, Leroy says the Verso-S is the lightest and most compact (i.e. ‘small’) vehicle in Europe’s B-MPV segment, while at the same time offering a ‘spacious’ interior. We hopped in to the Verso-S for a minute and indeed, this is a car that maximizes its interior footprint, with a flat floor and room aplenty for rear seat passengers.
In the ‘smart’ category, the Verso-S gets a 6.1-inch touch screen interface with an integrated rear view camera, a neat two-stage rear load area that allows for more cargo loading flexibility, and a sweet panoramic roof is available as an option. Also smart is the Verso-S’s fuel economy, which Toyota is billing as best-in-class. Leroy also called the addition of Toyota’s latest generation continuously variable transmission with a seven-speed manual mode — dubbed Multidrive S — as more smart thinking.
Leroy also made a point to call out the improved interior materials and build quality of the Verso-S, saying Toyota had listened to customers who had complained about the previous car’s cabin issues.
The Verso-S comes with two engine options, a 1.33-liter gas engine with roughly 98 horsepower and a 1.4-liter diesel pumping out about 89 horses. A six-speed manual is the standard transmission and the diesel is available with a transmission dubbed MultiMode, an automated manual with a fully automatic shift mode. We’ll add another S to the mix — slow — which this car is likely to be in either engine configuration.
All in all, the Verso-S is a vehicle that seems to make a lot of ‘sense’ for the European market.
For much more on everything from the Paris show, be sure to click over to our 2010 Paris auto show coverage page.