2014 Toyota Passo Facelift Review: Perfect Daily Driver For Pakistan

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Toyota Japan introduced a face-lift of its on-going model, the Toyota Passo in the 3rd quarter of 2014, and a friend of mine recently bought this car and with his permission, I have managed to share a review of his new purchase (so thank you Waleed and Farhan). But before I start this review I would like to share some details of the car in question.

Make: Toyota

Model: Passo

Year: 2014

Variant: X Package (KGC30)

Engine: 1.0L 1KR-FE, in-line 3-cylinder

Color: Purple Greyish Mica

Mileage: 918 kilometers (yes, it is authentic)

Price, PKR: 1,370,000/- (excluding registration costs)

Introduction

The face-lift has not only brought a cosmetic change but has also done some significant tweaking under the hood. The slowly emerging signature mustache like of a look Toyota is giving to all of its newer models is present with this Toyota Passo 2014 model, more black plastic trim is seen between the bumpers, cuts and lines are much more noticeable. The rear lights are all-LED now including the 3rd brake light. The interior seat fabric pattern and color has changed along with the speedometer font design. Space for fog lights has been given even for the base model unlike before. The tires have been upgraded from the skinny 155/80/R13 to 165/65/R14 with re-designed wheel caps. All face-lift models now come standard with automatic start & stop function and traction control.

Performance

The engine is still the same, 1.0L 1KR-FE with 71HP/68 Ib-ft of torque but with significant internal improvements such as higher compression ratio, optimized valve timing, 37% thermal efficiency increase over the out-going model and a newly designed air box assembly with a redesigned filter and pipes. With these new advances, Toyota claims emission are down by 75% as compared to the first generation and a 30% increase in fuel economy has been seen over the older model.

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The transmission being a CVT-i is very refined and smooth with no abrupt shifting or whine. The throttle has become very responsive as compared to the older Passo with the 4-speed conventional automatic gearboxes which tend to have had a delayed acceleration response. It’s no way near a performance vehicle but the acceleration for a city car with a 1 liter engine equipped with a CVT transmission is impressive. The vibration on idle and shivering conditions which the older model Passo suffered is not present in the newer model, the new improvements on the engine have really made noticeable changes.

Related: Browse Toyota Passo on PakWheels

Fuel Economy

I was using the car for two days, the fuel economy was fluctuating in between 18-22 Km/L with a light foot on the pedal throughout the usual stop and go traffic of Karachi. The auto start & stop function is very helpful, the engine shuts off once your car comes below 9 Km/hr and switches off your engine along with the A/C compressor and remains off for the next 30-40 seconds or before if you let go of the brake pedal, the engine starts itself again and the compressor kicks back in. This same automatic start & stop technology can be found on the Daihatsu Mira EiS (Eco Idle), Toyota Pixis (Eco Idle) and the Hana Plus (Eco Idle) variants of the pre-facelift Passo.

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Unfortunately, the Passo is no hybrid, it does not have a battery pack in the rear to which it can keep the compressor running on idle when the engine is off. The main function of the automatic start & stop feature is to maximize fuel economy while stationary, as you may know, a vehicle on idle consumes much more fuel as compared to when it is in motion. As mentioned by Toyota.jp on their website, the new Passo gives 25-27 Km/L intercity. Both the automatic start & stop function and ECO mode have an ‘ON’ or ‘OFF’ option.

NOTE: The automatic start & stop function will not work unless you have your seat belt on and if the vehicle gear position is somewhere other than the ‘D’ position.

Exterior

The exterior is now more attractive as compared to the pre-facelift models. The pre-2014 models were a dull sight to look at, however with the revised front bumper and headlights, the facelift makes you want to have a second look at it. The rear all-LED tail lights are a treat to see at night time with all 24-LED bulbs shining bright giving the car a more expensive sort of a touch. The 155/85/R13 to 165/65/R14 upgrade on the tires make the overall exterior profile seem a bit more tougher and beefed up.

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Interior

The Passo is well-known for it’s spacious and comfortable interior. The interior for the face-lift hasn’t changed much except for the interior color, seat fabric pattern, speedometer color and font size and with three rear headrests instead of two which have now been made standard. The recycled plastic feel of newer Toyota models is there, it seems too fragile and unsatisfactory at times but some soft touches such as the gear shift lever and steering wheel make the overall feel just about right. The cabin noise is little to none, road noise is minimal but is further noticeable during crosswinds and at higher speeds.

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Safety

This particular model is a X Package meaning that it has dual airbags as standard (driver and passenger) other variants have up to 8 airbags. It comes with ABS and EBD as standard, also traction control (stability control) is a standard option for all models.

NOTE: Traction control is on all times, turning it off requires you to hold the traction control button for 5 seconds which will completely disable it.

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Verdict

The new face-lifted Toyota Passo is one of the best city cars money can buy in today’s market and certainly checks out the value for money box. In it’s price range, there are no vehicles that give you similar options and features. The facelift Passo has all of your specific city/daily driver car requirements. Decent performance, great fuel economy, spacious interior and a good looking exterior along with necessary safety features. If you are in the market and are looking for a hatchback which is in between the 660cc-1500cc bracket, is bigger than a Kei car and smaller than a Toyota Aqua and fulfills all of the criterias above then you should seriously consider this as one of your top options.

Related: Read more reviews on PakWheels.

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  • M Juned Faruk

    Why Toyota is not introducing such cars in Pakistan Market 🙁

  • Zeeshan Ashraf

    ” In it’s price range, there are no vehicles that give you similar options and features ” … How about Mitsubishi Mirage G 2014. 1.0L MIVEC with CVT, Push start, Climate control, Activated stability control (ASC), UV cut privacy glass, Adjustable Head Lamps, 4 airbags, Anti-lock brakes (ABS), Adjustable rear seats, Immobilizer, Keyless entry, Auto stop & go (ASG), Hill start assist, Eco assist and Eco lamp, Emergency stop signal function, Emergency tire puncture repair kit, Mileage rated 27.2kmpl (highest for any non hybrid in Japan) Costs less than 1.3 Million PKR 🙂

  • Ali

    no offense , but IMO that dashboard is really ugly for a 14lac car !

  • Muhammad Osama Arshad

    Seats seems to be highly uncomfortable too. Use less review in respect to the demanded/ incurred cost.

  • Saulat Saleem

    “Toyota Mehran VXL”

  • MySchizoBuddy

    Because Suzuki,Toyota and Honda have a deal that only Suzuki can bring small cars and only honda/Toyota can bring sedans

  • Abdullah

    Really expensive…..fail in Pakistan!

  • Waleed Ahmed

    It would be Nice, If you Say that based on Experience of the this same Passo! Not Just say on just watching it! :/

  • Waleed Ahmed

    Buhahah!! Kithaayy Mehran tay Kithay JDM!! Sir Jee! Get your Facts Right!

  • Waleed Ahmed

    I would agree on this Pretty much extent & to be honest I also like Mirage for the Value of money. I daily drive from WAPDA Town to Gulberg & I am a close watcher for Cars, the thing is their aren’t many MIRAGE on the roads of Lahore currently & also not much in the Showrooms. So, Currently It’s pretty much Rare & can have a problem in Spare Parts finding in case of any problem.

    But one time, this car would be one of the most successful JDM in Pak in 1000cc Category. I am pretty much sure. 🙂

  • Waleed Ahmed

    PASSO takes the edge, is that it has the Same the Most famous 1KR-FE Engine & also it’s now Very much common on the Roads & also in the showrooms.

    By chance recently I have gone to Bilal Gunj & the Parts of new Passo are easily available.

  • Waleed Ahmed

    Hmm! Fail? Please keep your eyes Open when you Roam on the Roads that how much people have owned this Car & when Facelift’s price will stable, it would be Common as well.

  • Zeeshan Ashraf

    Passo has more spare parts and resale factors in its favour as it has been here for longer. Mirage on the other hand revamped in 2012, thus recently making it more eligible and affordable to import. I’m hopeful it gets to a solid 1000cc value for money in the next 12 months or so in our market. In Karachi, there are now substantial Mirage on the road. 🙂

  • Waleed Ahmed

    & BTW! I am not the Waleed who is mentioned at First 😛 , My Mamoo Jaan has it, So i have got experience of the same model but not Face lifted one.

  • Waleed Ahmed

    I must say that TOYOTA have very much Improved this passo than it’s Previous model, Especially the Start & Stop Technology is really really impressive & improved compression ratio, Lastly the transmission improvement is also very Nice (Y). Price is Currently high, & Best would be to wait for it to come down because of less months older leads to less depreciation of price.

  • ZZ

    High price and not impressed with the interior trim and color.

  • Syed Muzamil Ali

    I own a ’14 +HANA. and I love it. it is indeed the best daily driver for pakistan <3

  • Syed Muzamil Ali

    Are you out of your mind Mister? I own a passo and I bet it is one of the most demanded 1000cc JDMs of Pakistan. Why would people buy it if it was a failure. There are literally thousands of them roaming on the roads of Pakistan.

  • Syed Muzamil Ali

    You shouldn’t have wasted your time writing such a comment. I’m sure God must’ve built a separate place for people like you.

  • Syed Muzamil Ali

    I have the sofa seat version of Passo, and the seats are by no means uncomfortable, infact it easily beats my ’09 corolla pkdm in drive and comfort.

  • Syed Muzamil Ali

    Check out the hana plus dashboard, and the car is not priced at 14 lacs, the duties take it to that price.

  • Syed Muzamil Ali

    If you don’t know the facts, please don’t state them, Passo is rated 27.6kmpl and Mira is rated at 33kmpl in Japan. Mirage has no market in Pakistan as of yet.

  • Turbo

    it’s because Pakistanis don’t have other options…otherwise it is a shitty car!

  • Turbo

    shitty car with a shit load of price!

  • Turbo

    it is a fucking Japanese monopoly that’s why

  • Muhammad Osama Arshad

    Sofa seats are something different and the one as seen in the post is somewhat can not be considered in comfort zone. Many mira’s 07 are having the sofa seats.

    This PASSO with the tag of PKR 14 lacs (after registration) is no way a wise buying with added ugly rear end, bad interior, and so funny uncomfortable seats.

  • faraz

    Price, PKR: 1,370,000/- (excluding registration costs)

    itnay main banda corolla ya city le le why buy this :s

  • Khurram

    You may be right about Mitsubishi but Toyota is a tough vehicle and could be taken any where without the fear of damage to it’s suspension. My perception may be wrong. Correct me if it is so.

  • farhad hassan

    does it do 18-22 km or not

  • Zeeshan Ashraf

    AlhamdoLillah I never give an opinion on anything without getting my facts. Mira or any other kei car cannot be compared with as we’re discussing 1000cc category here. New facelift Passo 2014 is rated 0.4 kmpl higher than Mirage, completely agreed but of course it’s negligible in real world. What, on the other hand isn’t negligible are the tons of extra modern features that Mirage G 2014 (on comparison) has over Passo and in much lesser price. That is where true value for money comes from. Yes, Passo has and most probably will always have the market edge over Mirage in Pakistan, but primarily due to Toyota’s brand roots here, not necessarily because it’s a better car.
    You can get 2014 mirage G (top of the line) for around 1275 PKR, almost 1 lac less than Passo 2014’s not even top trim. I am not saying Passo is a bad car. I am just saying we must be open and aware to the idea that viable alternatives are also there. Just my personal opinion and nothing out of bias or hate. God Bless us all.

  • Zeeshan Ashraf

    Trust me, if there’s any place Passo can go, mirage will manage as well. This perception you have is probably the most common one in our culture, because Toyota indus has always tailored their cars for our (used to be) crappy roads in the past. The result was great ground clearance, soft suspension. In the process, what was compromised was the drive and road stability leading to many mishaps in the 90’s and 2000’s. You may also have noticed, as our roads infrastructure improved, specially in larger cities, people started to shift to Honda and JDM brands. The whole point of this story was the perception here about Toyota being a tougher vehicle than other brands. In japan, it isn’t that way 🙂
    Toyota has a brand root presence in Pakistan way longer than anyone else particularly Mitsubishi , hence you will always see more Passo’s than Mirage but does it also imply its a better car and value for money ?? it’s all about perceptions and preferences I guess at the end of the day 🙂

  • Usman Haider Sheikh

    suzuki every has better interior heck even faw v2 has better interior than this. I wonder who in their sane mind is willing to buy this for 1.4 million.

  • Saulat Saleem

    Reply by an unlucky owner. Love your car anyways lol

  • Saulat Saleem

    If Mehran will be for 1.4 million – it will surpass this car

  • Waleed Ahmed

    & It’s Never Gonna Happen! 😛

  • Waleed Ahmed

    & You Just Said that By Only Looking at it! 😛 Are you a Auto Magician? 😉 & BTW their soo Many people out their who bought this Ugly car as said by you!

    also FYI It’s not Mira 07.

  • Waleed Ahmed

    @ M.Osama
    Now that is a Real Owner Review, Either it would be Negative or Positive! & it’s +ve & denies your Visual Hypothesis.

  • Alpha Bravo

    its interior is cheap looking

  • Dr Usman Nawaz

    Aoa…
    Passo 2nd gen is really a nice car…
    Fuel economy is 14-16 in local, 18-21 on long…
    Plastics of Passo are very solid, way better than corolla and civic….

    Nice article by the writer…

    2 corrections, even hana plus of 2nd gen is without eco idle, and there are 2 airbags in all variants….

  • Zulfiqar Ali Soomro

    agreed. mirage is slowly gaining ground. at least in our city.

  • Akram

    Yeah, perceptions.. that’s what most of it boils down to…. 🙂 .
    .. the less known a JDM is, the greater it’s value for money when compared to similar vehicles.. (the spare parts/maintenance cost might be higher for a less known JDM though..)

    Dr sb, can you comment on repairing/spare parts of Mitsubishi Mirage in Lhr ? I am looking for a JDM at <1.2M PKR. Could you suggest something ?

    Thanks.

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