2018 Toyota C-HR: Wildly styled, however mildly mannered

At first blush, the 2018 Toyota C-HR’s exterior styling may be very aggressive. The compact crossover is sharply angled and steeply raked with bulging wheel arches. Nevertheless, nearer remark reveals that there’s a curvaceousness to the design that additionally makes it look a bit enjoyable and approachable with its Grumpy Cat face and rounded silhouette.

I get hints of Hyundai’s Veloster in particulars just like the windswept headlamps and VW’s Beetle within the flared haunches. The trapezoidal rear door handles tuck within the higher nook of the rear glass, making the crossover seem like a coupe. Regardless of the steeply angled roofline, there is a affordable quantity of headroom on the second row.

There’s not an angle at which you’ll view the C-HR the place it seems to be boring; although, there are just a few unflattering ones. In profile, for instance, the lengthy entrance overhang is plainly apparent, form of spoiling the sporty “wheels on the nook” aesthetic. However general, I loved the excessive stage of curb enchantment. 

I also needs to observe that the C-HR is a automotive that wears coloration effectively, so do not be afraid to go daring when selecting yours. Our instance popped in Blue Eclipse Metallic, however the Ruby Purple Pearl additionally seems to be fairly candy. My private favourite wild coloration is the non-obligatory Radiant Inexperienced Mica with contrasting white roof; it stands all the best way out in a crowd.

Inside, some thought has gone into sustaining the high-style aesthetic, however the C-HR’s low price range is extra plainly felt. There are beautiful particulars, like a sculpted sample within the headliner, however principally I used to be disillusioned by the hole and cheap-feeling plastic that makes up many of the cabin surfaces.

Wild fashion, docile performer

Regardless of the aggro-futuristic look, the C-HR is a surprisingly docile trip. Below the hood, a 2.Zero-liter four-cylinder engine makes simply 144 horsepower and 139 pound-feet of torque. The one transmission obtainable is a constantly variable one — Toyota’s CVTi-S options Sport, Regular, Handbook and Eco packages — and the one configuration obtainable is front-wheel drive.

These on the lookout for excessive efficiency or wanting to make use of the C-HR to get to outside actions might discover fairly disappointing loadout, notably the dearth of all-wheel drive. Nevertheless, the C-HR performs effectively sufficient inside its limitations. The CVT does a fairly good job of constructing the very best use of the torque readily available, delivering good around-town pep even because it offers up a little bit of off-the-line responsiveness. Positive, it might use a bit extra energy, however the crossover feels sufficient for commuting and working errands.

I anticipated the C-HR to be extra firmly sprung, however the trip was fairly comfy. The C-HR did an excellent job absorbing impacts from potholes and bumps, whereas nonetheless feeling planted and assured round a bend. The compliant suspension and easy torque supply made for an informal and laid-back driving character that was enjoyable and completely in distinction to the sharp exterior.  

The C-HR delivers common gasoline economic system. At 27 metropolis mpg, 31 freeway mpg and 29 mpg mixed, the EPA estimates are middle-of-the-road for this class. Subaru’s Crosstrek returns related economic system with commonplace all-wheel drive and Honda’s HR-V beats it by 2 to three mpg throughout the board. That makes me much more disillusioned that our market would not get the C-HR Hybrid mannequin obtainable to European and Japanese consumers.

Normal Toyota Security Sense P

Maybe essentially the most stunning element in regards to the C-HR is that the Toyota Security Sense P (TSS-P) suite of driver assist expertise is commonplace on all fashions. That features ahead precollision braking with pedestrian detection, lane departure alert with lane-keeping steering help, automated high-beam headlamps and full-speed-range adaptive cruise management; it is a function set you’d count on to pay just a few grand for on a luxurious automotive that’s commonplace tools on this quirky $23,000 Toyota. That is wonderful!

Step up from the bottom XLE mannequin to an XLE Premium so as to add blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert to the motive force assist combine.

The C-HR’s rear digicam show is housed inside within the mirror. I discovered it troublesome to focus the tiny display screen when reversing.

Antuan Goodwin/Roadshow

The C-HR additionally comes commonplace with a reverse digicam that shows by means of a teensy 2-inch display screen housed throughout the rearview mirror. Whereas I used to be blissful to have a digicam, I discovered the show onerous to see in brilliant daylight, making me go only a bit cross-eyed attempting to concentrate on it. In the long run, I resorted to good old style trying over the shoulder.


Dashboard expertise within the C-HR is easy to the purpose of annoyance. The one-option receiver lacks Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. There isn’t any navigation possibility from Toyota, so I used to be caught utilizing my telephone on a suction cup to get to unfamiliar areas. There’s not even an possibility for satellite tv for pc radio tuning.

The one audio sources are easy AM/FM with HD Radio, Bluetooth for hands-free calling and audio streaming and USB and iPod connectivity. I would say this can be a radio straight out of 2010, but it surely would not also have a CD slot.

Toyota C-HR, 2018 (Eclipse Blue Metallic)

About the one good factor I can say in regards to the C-HR’s receiver is that it seems to be simple sufficient to yank out and substitute.

Antuan Goodwin/Roadshow

The explanation for this simplicity is that the C-HR was initially supposed to reside underneath the Scion model and was designed with Scion-simple dashboard tech. For Scion fashions, tech upgrades got here within the type of dealer-installed upgrades, principally aftermarket stereos provided by Toyota/Scion companions. However now that Scion has dissolved, the crossover is left in tech limbo, saddled with essentially the most fundamental tools however with out entry to the Scion accessory-based improve path.

Thankfully, the C-HR additionally continues the Scion custom of utilizing commonplace 2DIN sizing for its receiver, so the very best factor I can say about the usual tech is that at the least it’s going to be simple to take away and substitute the unit with a greater receiver from Alpine, Pioneer or Sony for just a few hundred bucks. And since the C-HR is so cheap, there’s sure to be some dough left within the price range for that.

Affordably and easily priced

The 2018 Toyota C-HR is obtainable in simply two trim ranges beginning at $22,500 for the bottom XLE and topping out at $24,350 for XLE Premium. The Premium mannequin will get touch-unlock door handles, fog lights, blind-spot monitoring and never an entire lot extra. A $995 vacation spot cost will get added to the underside line of each fashions.

You may wish to additionally price range just a few hundred further bucks to get a greater automotive audio receiver with Android Auto, Apple CarPlay or at the least navigation out of your native 12-volt installer. Different choices price contemplating are the particular pearlescent or metallic paint colours or the particular “R-Code” paint package deal that provides contrasting white paint to the roof. When you’re into that, it’s going to run you between $500 and $895 relying on hue chosen.

Aside from that and some dealer-installed equipment, there aren’t any different choices, upgrades or packages, one other holdout of the “no-haggle pricing” on the C-HR’s Scion roots.

Toyota C-HR, 2018 (Eclipse Blue Metallic)

I used to be wowed by the C-HR’s daring styling, however I may also see how some might discover it off-putting.

Antuan Goodwin/Roadshow

Stand-out fashion, however a middling machine

The C-HR is an oddly charming automotive; I actually fell in love with it though I can not in good religion give it greater than the middling rating it earns. As a fan of customized automotive audio from method again, I see potential and longevity within the simply upgradable dashboard tech, at the same time as I am annoyed with the out-of-the-box expertise. The concept of overhauling the tech each few years with out having to overtake the whole car is interesting to me.

The great thing about the C-HR is that it presents this straightforward stage of dashboard tech whereas additionally coming commonplace with some superior security expertise. So, the client is not sacrificing issues like pedestrian detection auto-braking or adaptive cruise management.

The fashion, I do know, is subjective, however I like that too and I like that it is matched with comfy. relaxed trip. I’m disillusioned on the lack of AWD or a Hybrid mannequin in our market, however we may even see them in future updates.

However except you are in love with that fashion, the C-HR most likely is not your most suitable option on this hotly contested class. Lively way of life sorts will see the same economic system, higher utility and commonplace all-wheel drive functionality as causes to steer towards the Subaru Crosstrek. These on the lookout for higher OEM expertise and gasoline effectivity will see higher worth in one thing just like the Honda HR-V or Kia’s Niro Hybrid.

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