The latest Toyota is the C-HR; an SUV driven by the hybrid mechanics of the Prius.

While Toyota's all-new small crossover won't arrive in North America for a few more months as a 2018 model, our editors in Spain have already gotten a first drive in of the 2017 model year vehicle intended for the European market. - Ed.

— Madrid, Spain

The 2017 Toyota C-HR is the result of a double revolution. The one started by Toyota more than 20 years ago when presenting one of the first SUVs in history, the RAV4, and that would continue only a year later with the car that, at present, is the most popular hybrid in the world: the Toyota Prius.

Now, two decades later the Japanese company has put the 2017 Toyota C-HR on sale. A 4.36-metre long small crossover (24 centimetres shorter than a RAV4), which is driven by the famed 122 horsepower hybrid mechanics of the Toyota Prius.

Toyota CH-R 2017
Toyota CH-R 2017

A specialist in the city

The hybrid mechanics of the Toyota CH-R is the result of combining a 1.8-litre gasoline engine with an electric motor capable of moving the crossover in 100% electric mode for two kilometers, provided the vehicles does not exceed 50 kilometres per hour. That makes this Toyota one of the best SUV's if you're going to make frequent urban tours. In fact, city consumption can be as low as 4.5 litres per 100 kilometres.

Outside the city, the power is sufficient for a vehicle its size. Although at full acceleration, the CVT automatic transmission makes itself more than audible in the passenger compartment.

Toyota CH-R 2017
Toyota CH-R 2017
Toyota CH-R 2017

That's it inside

The bluish-tone dashboard is similar to other Toyota hybrids. It is slightly oriented to the driver and in the superior finish of our top-trim tester, incorporates a standard 8.8-inch touchscreen for Toyota's Touch 2 multimedia system.

As is customary in SUVs and crossovers, the steering wheel is set high, something that allows a feel of greater control. Otherwise, the tilt and telescoping steering wheel make it easy to find a comfortable position behind the wheel. In fact, the only negative here is the somewhat reduced rear visibility.

As in most of its rivals, the 2017 Toyota C-HR offers enough backseat space for two adults and a child to travel in total comfort. Of course, the small windows make for a dim interior.

For its part, the luggage compartment of 377 litres is correct for a vehicle this size. In addition, it is proportioned to be usable and incorporates a wide loading mouth. The only detail that could be improved is that, instead of a conventional spare wheel, it incorporates a puncture repair kit.



Photos: Francisco Fernández / Motor 1 Spain

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