Toyota Proace Verso review
The Toyota Proace Verso can hold a lot of people and their belongings while the latest safety tech makes it very safe on the move. However, it is noisier and less comfortable to drive than car-based alternatives.
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The nine-seat Toyota Proace Verso is perfect if your close family members outnumber the seven seats offered by most car-based MPVs. The Toyota Proace Verso has humble van origins but aims to hide it with some eye-catching paint shades – they are optional, however.
It’s essentially a re-badged version of the Peugeot Traveller and Citroen SpaceTourer, but is a less expensive alternative to the Mercedes V-Class.
The Proace Verso is available in three configurations with lengths ranging from 4.6 to 5.3 meters, and the option to have seven, eight or nine seats. Depending on trim level, the seats go from fabric to full-on leather captain’s chairs.
There’s no shortage of passenger space inside, but the nine-seaters have a small boot. On the other hand, remove all the seats in it (the longest model) and you have a bewildering 4,900-litre capacity at your disposal.
The interior design might fool you that this is a swanky SUV, but the materials are on the more durable side. There’s also lots of car tech available such as a head-up display, massage seats and a seven-inch infotainment touchscreen with sat-nav, but you have to pay extra for them.
It might not have the same level of class as a V-Class, but the Toyota Proace Verso compensates with cheaper running costs which matter in the long run.
If driving a van sounds daunting to you, don’t worry, because the Proace Verso is easy to place on the road thanks to accurate steering and impressive manoeuvrability. Take it up to 70mph on the motorway, though, and the wind whistle serves as a reminder of the big Toyota’s brick-like aerodynamics. Nonetheless, going over poor roads feels a bit bumpy – just like any alternative with as many seats.
The Proace Verso is quite cheap-to-run. Its engines are diesel only with power ranging from 94 to 177hp. Depending on whether it’s empty or full, expect between 35-55mpg. Despite being the mid-range model, the 113hp 1.6-litre is the most cost-efficient.
Basic Proace Verso models don’t get much as standard, but parking sensors are useful in a car this size, and you also get air-conditioning and cruise control fitted to every model. Technology such as a 180-degree camera, automatic city braking and adaptive cruise control are optional.
The Toyota Proace Verso is a car created to serve a very specific purpose and that is to provide more seats than the currently popular seven-seater SUVs. While it beats them on shear capacity, driving it feels a bit like a chore. As a work vehicle, on the other hand, the Proace Verso makes a lot of sense thanks to its relatively low running costs and the promise of legendary Toyota reliability.