Cute little first-timer

2011-04-16 09:03

Six years after launching it abroad, Toyota has finally decided to bring the Aygo to South Africa. To introduce it to the local market, the Japanese carmaker has launched a colourful campaign that toys with the car’s name, which is pronounced ‘I-go’.

Although the car is new to the local market, it isn’t something South Africans haven’t seen before.

The Citroën C1 and Peugeot 107 are almost identical to the Aygo except for their front-ends. This is thanks to a long-standing alliance between the French and the Japanese carmakers, which means all three are made at a factory in the Czech Republic.

Toyota hopes to sell about 300 units a month, going up against other cars in its class such as the Chevrolet Spark and Suzuki Alto.

The Aygo is powered by a three-cylinder, one-litre VVT-i engine with 50kW of power and 93Nm of torque. This little number is prettier than its two factory sisters and makes a good first-time buy or a student car.

Dubbed baby-Yaris, it’s a tiny five-door car with a boot big enough for two small bags. It has the cutest grunt when
playing with the throttle and a 4.7m turning circle which makes it easy to park and manoeuvre.

Only two models – Fresh and Wild – are available with the latter being the higher-spec car.

It comes standard with dual airbags, power steering, aircon, anti-lock braking system, brake assist, electronic brake-force distribution and a four-year/60?000km service plan. The Wild model also has the privacy glass, a CD player, 14-inch alloys and side airbags.

The question is: why has it taken Toyota South Africa so long to bring this cute, little car to the local market? Their response: we needed to fill the gap in the line-up left by the popular and discontinued Tazz.

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