The updated Yaris has been launched in SA re-badged as Pulse, to give a more fresh, vibey & trendy look, to appeal to a younger market. Already a rally legend in SA , clocking up numerous victories in the SA rally championship, the Yaris Pulse is looking for new customers amongst the student set and young at heart.
It comes with more choice in the range and has increased spec as well. The front & rear end have been re-worked and give a fresh look and more dynamic design. The new colour choices are also nice & the Glacier white we drove accented well with the black counter-points. Satin silver & Cosmic blue are the other new colours.
A new front bumper, changes to the grille & lower fog lights give the Yaris Pulse a more sturdy planted look. New headlamp design also give the car a distinctive look. New lower door mouldings add an air of athleticism, and the rear benefits from new a new tail light clusters, new bumper & new tailgate. This all adds up to a fresh looking, younger appealing car.
In the Cabin.
New upholstery, new trims and in particular the black & grey give nice accents to the interior cabin. The cabin is specced better as well, with a more well laid out design. The 3 spoke steering wheel & new piano black inserts look great, with the new propeller-style airvents. The media screen was easy to navigate and the new switches also felt good. The interior is spacious enough, and the seats were comfy to boot. Speaking about the boot it is fairly large and has 60/40 fold down options as well.
The old 1.3 L engine is gone, and in its place is a 1.5 L petrol engine that delivers 12% more power according to Toyota. There was no issue on power but we did test it at sea level. It has a six-speed manual transmission or a 7 speed CVT tranny which behaved very well, considering that many times they do not do well.
Difficult to test economy, but Toyota claim improved fuel economy, and increased performance in overtaking as well.
The Yaris Pulse handled well in the Cape over the various mountain passes on our route, and it felt pretty on point in this regard. Power was no issue bearing in mind what was under the hood. The car is well specced and the grade walk is below.
Pulse (MT & CVT) Pulse Plus (CVT) Hybrid
Vehicle Stability Control Curtain and driver knee airbag Auto dual aircon
D+P+S airbag Projector headlamps Push start
Bluetooth Cruise control LED DRL
USB LED Rear combination lamps
Leather steering and gear knob
Front and rear fog lamps
15” alloy wheels
Front and rear power windows
Remote central locking
• The Yaris continues to be a good value-for-money product, with all models offered with a 3-years/45 000km service plan and a 3-years/100 000km warranty:
– 1.0 Pulse MT: R199 000
– 1.5 Pulse MT: R228 700
– 1.5 Pulse CVT: R241 400
– 1.5 Pulse Plus CVT: R249 600
– Hybrid: R307 200
We did not drive the 1.0 L and the hybrid so we cannot comment on those models. In summing up, this Yaris Pulse is a good buy and acquits itself well in a hotly contested segment.