Geneva Bites – What’s happening to Toyota?

Until recently, Toyota made the sort of cars which wouldn’t say boo to a goose, to use that strange, but expressive phrase. All that seems to be about to change.

Toyota C-HR Concept Frankfurt 2015 Image: autovia-media

The Mirai and latest Prius look as if they would cross a busy road themselves if there was a goose-booing opportunity on the other side, and the C-HR crossover which debuted at Geneva keeps up the trend. In the current manner, it’s tamed down a bit from the C-HR concept shown last year at Frankfurt. However it still tends towards the egregious.

I’ve been inured to this since the shock of the Nissan Juke, and I think the Toyota hangs together rather better. Am I alone in thinking that there’s something of the Type 844 Delta about the C-HR? Lancia might have done better with that car had it been a high-riding crossover with a bit of ‘attitude’, after all it arrived on the market over a year after the Nissan Cashcow.

My sole C-HR disappointment is that the Burnaston plant missed out on it. I’m sure that the Turkish plant at Sakarya will do a good job, but they must be worrying in Derbyshire, with only the ageing Auris and near-moribund Avensis to keep them going.

Not far away on the Toyota stand was the not wholly serious Kikai. I found myself thinking of a Rowland Emmet sculpture, dosed on steroids:

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Despite constantly feeling the hand of John Calvin on my shoulder during my time in Geneva, I’ll readily forgive Toyota their foray into the frivolous.  They’ve clearly been working hard this term


2 thoughts on “Geneva Bites – What’s happening to Toyota?”

  1. The influence of the last Delta on the Toyota CH-R is the floating roof which is all the rage at the moment. The Delta, despite its lack of sales success, has been a huge stylistic influence on current cars; the Kia Cee’d, Ford Focus, new Vauxhall Astra and Hyundai i20 spring to mind.

  2. To give Toyota their due, their current range is one of their better styled. Their new corporate face looks good in every application, even making the Aygo and Auris look interesting. I was surprised by how handsome I found the recent RAV4 facelift, although I suspect I may be a minority there. Only the new Prius may be a misstep, although I reserve judgement until I see one in the metal.

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