Only one engine available, but manual or automatic gearboxes
You can only get the Toyota Aygo with one engine – a 1.0-litre three-cylinder petrol. It produces 72hp, so it’s perky enough to potter around town but it struggles to keep up with fast-moving motorway traffic. Accelerating from 0-62mph takes a very leisurely – and quite noisy – 14 seconds.
Stick to quiet country roads, however, and it’s reasonably quiet fairly cheap to run. Toyota claims it’ll return 68.9mpg, but you’ll have to drive with the patience of a saint to get anywhere near that rather optimistic figure. 55mpg far more likely, although that’s as good as any of its alternatives.
The Aygo may be short on power most of the time but it compensates with agile handling
The standard five-speed manual is still pretty easy to use, however, and the Toyota’s light controls mean it isn’t particularly tiring to drive for long periods or in heavy traffic. There’s also the option of an x-shift automatic gearbox, which is fine if you absolutely must have an auto. Next to the autos in an i10 or Picanto, though, it feels quite jerky at low speeds.
Despite its small size, you get a good view out of the Toyota Aygo. This is thanks to the large windows and a relatively raised seating position. As a result, it’s dead easy to thread through tight city streets and you won’t have any trouble spotting cars approaching at junctions.
You can’t get it with any fancy automatic parking systems, but the Aygo’s light steering and small size mean you won’t have any trouble squeezing it into tight parking spaces. To help prevent any bumper scuffs, X-play models come with a reversing camera as standard and you can pay extra for rear parking sensors as part of the optional OUTshield pack.
Around town, the Toyota does a reasonable job of softening bumps in the road, but large potholes still send an unpleasant thud through the cabin. The new Toyota Aygo does come with added sound insulation to muffle the roar from the tyres at speed, but it’s still a little noisier than the VW Up. Head off the motorway and you’ll find the Toyota Aygo corners without leaning too much, but it’s not as fun to drive as Picanto, i10, Citigo or Up.
Pick a top-spec X-clusiv model, you get plenty of safety kit as standard, including lane-departure warning and automatic emergency braking to help prevent avoidable low-speed collisions. Unfortunately, you can’t get these features on entry-level cars and they’re optional extras on other models in the range.