| 19.6°C Dublin

X MARKS THE SPOT

Toyota are noted for a lot of things - being fun isn't one of them.

Granted, they make some of the most reliable, almost bulletproof cars and their 4X4s are practically indestructible.

It's a reputation the Japanese car giant is very serious about and protective of, so the marketing drive behind the new Aygo came as a bit of a surprise.

The catchphrase tagged to this little city car is "Go Fun Yourself" - a little risque if you don't mind me saying.

Obviously the tea lady in Aichi stopped putting the bromide in Mr Toyoda's morning cuppa and house music has replaced the classical tunes serenely piped around the building.

Or maybe it has just dawned on the suits that younger drivers - especially college-going youngsters - have a huge influence over what second car most households choose.

TECHNOLOGY

That particular species has an insatiable appetite for the latest style, technology, funkiness and that stand-out-from-the-crowd appeal - and all at the most frugal of prices.

Full credit to the designers who have ticked all the boxes with the second generation supermini.

In fact, it's hard to believe the Aygo shares the same DNA as the new Peugeot 108 and its sister, the Citroen C1.

A betting man would have put his house on the C1 winning best-dressed on this occasion.

Not so, and it's a case of X marks the spot for Toyota (if only they could get Wolverine to drive one in the next movie instalment).

Running from the A-pillars to the front grille, the mark of the beast is the focal point and can be swapped in a variety of colours, setting it apart from its rivals.

It corresponds at the rear with the diffuser housing the number plate matching the front while inside the same colour features in the door panels, air vents and floor mats.

Snazzy LED lights come as standard across the range.

The hip styling continues inside with a simple dash dominated by a large piano black touch screen infotainment system which is home to Bluetooth (not standard), music streaming and colour rear view camera (option).

The new Aygo comes in several specs, namely x, x-play, x-play + and two custom packages, x-cite and x-clusiv.

The entry level car is a bit sparse so you'll have to opt for the x-play before you get 15-inch alloys, fog lights, Bluetooth, leather multi-function steering wheel, two-tone split-fold seats and electric mirrors.

Drive-wise, there's very little difference in the 1.0 litre, three-cylinder petrol engine which bangs out a peppy 69bhp while returning 68mpg (4.1 litres/100kms).

Around town it's nippy and very fuel-efficient, but take this little imp on the motorway and the fuel consumption plummets while the light body is susceptible to being blown about in high winds. The thinny feel is especially evident in the rear where the pop-out windows feel like a bit of a cop-out.

Other niggles include a really small boot with high lip and the use of cheap scratchy plastics in the main dashboard.

The Aygo has massive competition and would do well to trump the VW UP! or the Opel Adam.

That said, it is frugal, funky and a little bit fun. Prices start at €12,625.


Privacy