The 2013 Toyota Verso seven-seater has been revealed. These are the first official pictures of the new car, which will make its public debut at the 2012 Paris Motor Show.
Set to go on sale in early next year, it will feature a significantly altered exterior design to reflect the new Toyota family identity.
It will also get a higher-quality interior with new trim details, instruments and controls, as well as improved handling and an updated range of engines.
More than 300 parts have been changed, meaning the new car will build on the established versatility, practicality and roominess of the current model, with more style and comfort and a better driving experience.
It is the first new Toyota to be planned, designed and developed in Europe from the concept stage onwards, and it is being built exclusively at Toyota Motor Manufacturing Turkey. European sales are expected to be about 50,000 in 2013, giving the model an approximate five per cent share of its market segment.
New Verso retains its distinctive ‘dual zone’ styling, with a full length character line that runs the length of the body to reduce the perception of the vehicle’s height while emphasising its width and length.
Most of the changes have been made at the front, where the details include a large, trapezoidal grille set within a redesigned bumper, and a smaller upper grille that spans the full width between new headlights.
The headlamp units themselves are narrower and incorporate new LED daytime running lights. On some versions, High-Intensity Discharge headlights are fitted.
The profile view changes with new, smaller, folding door mirrors with integrated turn signal lights. New wheels are available: the 17-inch alloys have the same design as before, but with a darker finish; the 16-inch alloys now have a machined face finish.
At the rear there is a new bumper with an integrated low-level diffuser. The colours of the lenses in the rear light cluster have also been changed.
Changes to Verso’s interior include extensive new trim details and soft-touch materials including a satin black paint finish.
The appearance of the instruments and switchgear has been updated with more consistent lighting and font sizes for the graphics. The driver’s meters are now back-lit in white, and all switches have a deep orange illumination.
New seat fabrics, colours and designs have been introduced and the front seats have improved side bolster support; the bolsters themselves have a harder-wearing finish. Leather trim is available on higher grade versions.
Verso remains as roomy as ever and retains its best-in-class 975mm couple distance between the first and second row of seats.
Toyota’s Easy Flat-7 seating system delivers excellent flexibility, with 32 possible seating combinations. Individual seats are fitted in the second and third rows and those in the second row have a 195mm sliding adjustment range.
When all the rear seats are folded, new Verso has a flat load floor that is 1,575mm and 1,430 mm wide. With all seats in place the luggage volume is 155 litres; when the third row is folded, the figure rises to 440 litres.
There is a boot management system under the floor where items can be stored out of sight. Its capacity varies according to how many seats are folded down, and whether a full size spare tyre or tyre repair kit is specified.
There is more storage around the cabin, including a twin-compartment glovebox, that has a cooled upper section large enough to carry a 1.5-itre bottle, and an 8.2-litre lower section.
There is also a spacious centre console box, door pockets, seatback storage, fold-down tables with integrated cupholders, a drawer beneath the front passenger seat, an overhead consoles and pockets for the driver and front passenger that can be used to hold mobile phones or music players.
A full-length panoramic roof is available, measuring 2,340 by 1,280mm, bringing significantly more light into the cabin and increasing the sense of spaciousness.
Verso’s 2.0-litre D-4D diesel engine has been revised to be quieter and have better low-speed power delivery. At the same time its CO2 emissions have been reduced by 10g/km to fall below 130g/km.
The 2.2-litre D-CAT diesel engine will also be available, with a choice of six-speed manual or automatic transmissions. The manual develops 175bhp with 159g/km CO2 emissions, the automatic 148bhp and 178g/km.
The towing capacity for all diesel-powered Verso has been increased by 200kg to 1,500kg.
The 1.6 and 1.8-litre Valvematic petrol engines will remain available. Both are matched to a six-speed manual gearbox, with the 1.8 optionally available with a revised Multidrive CVT that has been tuned to give more of a stepped gear shift feel, with engine revs more closely linked to vehicle acceleration.
Verso is designed to ride with all the stability and comfort of a conventional passenger car. Its driving dynamics have been further revised to achieve even greater body control and more agile handling.
Body rigidity has been improved, and the suspension (front MacPherson struts, rear torsion beam) has been tuned for a more comfortable ride. The electric power steering has been adjusted, too, for better feel and feedback.
The cabin has been made quieter by adding sound damping to the A-pillars and the introduction of smaller, more aerodynamic door mirrors, which reduce wind noise. Engine noise has been cut, too, and better sound damping has been provided between the engine compartment and cabin.