Toyota’s Verso MPV has been given a ‘substantial’ safety upgrade as part of an overall model revamp.
Toyota Safety Sense active safety and driver assistance features have been added as standard spec to every model. It’s part of a refresh that includes a revised grade structure, new alloy wheel designs and cabin upgrades. Safety Sense includes a Pre-Collision System that recognises an imminent impact with a vehicle ahead, triggering a warning to the driver and priming the brakes for extra stopping power the moment the brake pedal is pressed. If the driver fails to respond, Autonomous Emergency Braking is activated, automatically slowing the vehicle to reduce the force of any impact.
The Verso also now has Automatic High Beam which detects both the headlights of oncoming vehicles, and the tail lights of vehicles ahead, automatically switching between high and low beams to avoid dazzling other drivers. The third Toyota Safety Sense element for the Verso is Lane Departure Alert, which monitors lane markings on the road to helps prevent accidents and head-on collisions. If the vehicle starts to deviate from its lane without the turn indicators being used, the system alerts the driver with visual and audible warnings.
These features are in addition to seven airbags, ABS, emergency brakeforce distribution, brake assist, traction control and vehicle stability control which all come as standard.
A new Design trim has joined the range alongside the established Active, Icon and Excel specifications. Available with the 1.8-litre Valvematic petrol engine with automatic transmission and the 1.6-litre D-4D diesel, it comes with the Toyota Touch 2 with Go multimedia system with satellite navigation and reversing camera, rear privacy glass and a (fixed) panoramic roof. These are in addition to the standard features of Icon grade, including DAB tuner, dusk-sensing headlights, cruise control, automatic air conditioning, six-speaker audio and power windows front and rear.
The range-topping Excel model now has the Design trim’s panoramic roof, as well as rain-sensing wipers, auto-dimming rear-view mirror, high-intensity discharge headlights and combination leather and cloth upholstery.
New alloy wheel designs have been added - 16-inch for the Icon, 17-inch for the Design and 17-inch with a double-spoke arrangement for the Excel models, with an Anthracite dark grey finish. The colour choices include a new Platinum Bronze shade.
In the cabin there is a new leather-trimmed steering wheel with integrated switches for hands-free phone, a new gear shift design and a new look cloth upholstery for Icon and Design models. To free up more boot space, the tyre repair kit (when specified) has been relocated to the underfloor storage compartment behind the driver’s seat. The Toyota Touch 2 system adopts a larger, seven-inch display and an improved interface for easier, more intuitive sat nav operation.
The 2016 Toyota Verso is on sale now, priced from £18,120 for the five-seat Active model, £18,650 for seven-seat models with the new Design grade models starting at £23,405 OTR.