When the Vitz debuted in Japan since January 1999, Toyota ushered in the new age of compact cars, then it was exported in other parts of the world by the names of Yaris and Echo (not to be confused with the Echo sedan in the North American market that is the Platz). In 2005, the Vitz garnered a full redesign and exported globally as the Yaris. That is the point because the Toyota Vitz is a true global compact that targets the likelihood of the Suzuki Swift and the Honda Fit (Jazz).
2011 Toyota Vitz
Brace yourself and the near end of 2010 marks the beginning of the Vitz's full model change as it reaches its third generation. The new, third-generation, Toyota Vitz is now evolved to become the most fuel efficient compact in its class, outwitting the likes of the Nissan March K13 and the Honda Fit (Jazz) in this category. The new third-generation Toyota Vitz comes in four various variants starting from the Vitz U and the Vitz F
2011 Toyota Vitz
the stylish Vitz Jewela for the ladies
2011 Toyota Vitz Jewela
and the aggressive Vitz RS for those who want to taste the extreme.
2011 Toyota Vitz RS
Depending on the variant, the new Vitz has three engine types available. First is the 1KR-FE VVTi engine (1.0-litre engine) that is the entry level for the new Vitz. This engine has the power output of a frugal 69PS and the fuel economy of 23.0km/L. Second is the 1NR-FE Dual VVTi engine (1.3-litre engine) which has the power output of 95PS and the fuel economy of 24.0km/L (2WD). Last but truly an enthusiasts' favorite was the high-performance 1NZ-FE Dual VVTi engine (1.5-litre engine) that has the power output of 109PS and the fuel economy of 20km/L (CVT). Most Vitz variants are equipped with the Super CVT-i for optimized fuel efficiency but only the extreme Vitz RS is equipped with the 5-speed manual. The RS also comes with the Super CVT-i but what differs is the sporty paddle shifters.
Now, here's the real catch; the Vitz Smart Stop Package has one secret weapon to become the most opulent gas-miser such is the Toyota Stop & Start System (an idling stop system found in the Toyota iQ Go 6MT). The Toyota Stop & Start System allows the 1NR-FE Dual VVTi engine to shut off automatically when not in use. This also applies when your Vitz goes on a brake during a traffic. With the Smart Stop combined, the Vitz has the maximum fuel economy of 26.5km/L! This fuel economy is bound to be the most fuel efficient among compacts with 1.3-litre engines.
2011 Toyota Vitz interior
With the Vitz now has a new exterior, the change of the Vitz's interior sounds puzzling. The new interior seems to be somewhat complexing and I still like the interior of the second-generation Vitz. However, the new Vitz is covered with the special windows that has a 99% protection against the sun's harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays. When summer comes, you'll be glad to have the Vitz ready.
My thoughts about the Vitz:
Now on sale in Japan and soon; the rest of the world including the Philippines as the new Yaris! The case is now open for those who want to see the new king of compacts such is the new Toyota Vitz. With the Smart Stop equipped, the new Vitz really puts the Nissan March K13 to shame because of its class no.1 fuel economy of 26.5km/L. The Vitz Jewela is somewhat a feminine type, more like the Ractis (Verso-S) L'epice and the Passo +Hana, because of the attractive front and fancy colors. The Vitz RS is an enthusiasts' favorite because of its extreme attitude but 5 gears wasn't enough to outrun against the Honda Fit RS, now with a 6-speed manual. I'm sure they're ready to get their hands on the new Vitz. Are you ready?
Photo: Toyota Motor Corporation