2021 Toyota C-HR Review

5/5

Overview

While it used to be offered with a manual transmission, four-wheel drive and a 1.2-litre petrol engine, the revised C-HR is only available with 1.8-litre or 2.0-litre hybrid powertrains. Fuel economy for the CH-R Hybrid is impressive, as are its CO2 emissions. The 1.8-litre model claims an official figure of up to 57.9mpg while emitting from 110g/km of CO2. The 2.0-litre hybrid can manage up to 53.2mpg and from 120g/km CO2. Those figures mean that even if you do a lot of miles, you no longer need to buy a diesel engine. The combination of hybrid power and an automatic gearbox makes it ideal for urban driving too. 

Pros
  • Typical Toyota performance and reliability
  • Ergonomic interior design
  • Excellent driving dynamics
  • Easy-to-use infotainment system
Cons
  • Only one USB port in the interior

Exterior

The C-HR’s looks may be polarising, but they clearly worked with the Irish buying public. It’s no surprise to see that very little has changed with this facelift then. Look hard enough and you might just notice the bolder grille with repositioned fog lights, or the slightly different light signature at both ends. There’s also a new body-coloured front splitter and chrome-infused rear diffuser.

Interior

One of the main criticisms of the C-HR was the quality of the interior trim and you will be pleased to learn that there is a marked improvement in this regard. There’s now far more soft touch surfaces and fewer scratchy plastics all round. It’s an interesting-looking interior with a sensible layout – not an easy thing to achieve. Fans of physical buttons can rejoice as Toyota have added them back in on the sides of the screen to make navigating between different functions quicker and easier. You will also get Android Auto and Apple CarPlay as standard and the option of leather or cloth upholstery. Rear visibility is predictably limited but you probably expected that. 

Performance

The new 2.0-litre hybrid produces 182bhp from its petrol and electric motors thanks largely to some clever combustion technology. It weighs slightly more than the 1.8 and is still front-wheel drive only, but the extra power is welcome given the C-HR’s game handling. Zero to 100kmph will take 8.2 seconds, compared to 11 seconds dead for the smaller engine.

Reliability

Toyota’s recent reliability record is as good as you would expect and all new Toyota’s come with a three year / 100,000km warranty.

Running Costs

Both engine variants are economical enough with Toyota claims just under 59mpg and 109g/km for the 1.8-litre engine on the WLTP cycle, and 54mpg and 119g/km in the same conditions for the 2.0-litre. There’s also a new graphic front and centre that shows what percentage of the time you’ve spent in EV mode, and the MyToyota app now offers something called ‘Hybrid Coaching’.

Handling

The steering and suspension setup in the C-HR has been improved upon that once again. As previously mentioned, there’s now an enhanced power steering system. The resulting feel is light but direct – you shouldn’t find yourself having to adjust the wheel often. The ride is comfortable - you will corner flat and although you will notice crevasses in the road, they never seem to shudder through the cabin as in some other crossovers, even with the larger 18-inch wheels fitted. 

Safety

The 2021 Toyota C-HR comes with a wide range of standard safety equipment and was awarded a five-star Euro NCAP safety rating. 

Summary

Exterior
80%
Interior
90%
Performance
80%
Reliability
90%
Running Costs
90%
Handling
90%
Safety
100%

Not many cars in this class can rival the C-HR Hybrid for its advanced powertrains and efficiency. The revised C-HR has impressive fuel economy and low CO2 emissions, potentially sounding the death knell for the Irish love of the diesel engine.