Launched back in 2005, Toyota Innova has been the country's top selling MPV/MUV. The company has regularly been updating this MPV to keep it fresh in the market. Toyota Innova represents a perfect blend of driveability and spaciousness of MUV and elegance of a sedan. It is being offered in both petrol and diesel versions.
In 2013, Toyota introduced the facelifted version of Innova in the Indian market. The updated MPV received both exterior and interior changes. It retains the overall design, but the company has added a lot of chrome to provide a more premium look to the car. The front facade of the MPV now features wider chrome grille with Toyota badge positioned at the centre. It also comes equipped with a restyled bumper which sports chrome surrounds for the fog lamps.
At the rear, the Innova has wide chrome plate and a new set of reflectors on both sides. It also gets a new spoiler and side visors. Chrome accents are given to the mirrors, which also has turn indicators. The door housing also features chrome touches to offer a premium feel.
Inside the cabin, the facelifted Innova has beige interiors, new infotainment system with a screen for rear passengers. The audio controls in top spec models are now mounted on the steering wheels and captain seats are also on offer for second row passengers. On safety front, the MPV comes equipped with dual airbags for both driver and passenger, and side impact beams.
Under the hood, the Toyota Innova facelift gets the same 2.0-litre petrol engine that churns out 132PS of power and the 2.5-litre diesel engine producing 101PS. The five-speed manual gearbox transmits power to rear wheel of the MPV. It competes against the likes of Chevrolet Tavera, Nissan Evalia, Mahindra Xylo and Tata Aria.
The updated Toyota Innova boasts of a distinctive new look with an all-new 3-slatted grille with chrome inserts. This grille extends to a new square shaped bumper. Its fog lamps also has chrome lines to offer a stylish and premium look, while the angular shaped headlamps now comes with turn signal lamps. The side profile of the MPV gets a new chrome strip which runs across the length of the car and new body graphics. To offer a sportier stance, the company has added sporty side moulding to this MPV. At the rear, the Innova gets a chrome garnish with reflector which provides the car an enhanced sleek & premium appearance. To give a sporty edge, the Innova has been offered with contemporary body graphics along with stylish chrome finish muffler cutter & a sporty rear spoiler.
The overall dimensions of the Toyota Innova are 4585mm X 1765mm X 1760mm (length x width x height). It has a larger wheel base of 2750mm, which offers a good head, leg and shoulder room to seat seven/eight passengers comfortably. With a ground clearance of 176mm, it is easier to drive Innova through rugged Indian terrains. This MPV is available with both steel and alloy wheels. The 16-inch alloy wheels add to the sportiness of the car, and is packed with puncture resistant 205/65 R15 radial tubeless tyre.
The interior styling of the updated Innova looks identical to its predecessor, except for the few changes to offer more premiumness. The vehicle gets a stylish wood finished gear knob, an elegant wood panel dashboard and a wooden armrest panel. Its dual tone seats with leather trim further accentuates the premium interiors of the new Innova. The fit and finish is top-notch and the material quality is impressive. The design of instrument panel is simple and subtle.
The top-of-the line Innova comes equipped with a touch-screen. It features an auxiliary and USB connectivity, telephonic and Bluetooth connectivity. There is also a reverse parking camera connectivity with this in-dash system. The vehicle offers a decent sized boot space, which can be extended by folding the third row seats. It comes equipped with power steering, power windows with driver side auto down function and power door locks. Dual AC vents for both front and rear passengers have been added to the car. The rear AC switches and ceiling vents for second and third row have been fitted to the car. It sports a 12V power socket to charge electronic gadgets.
The vehicle offers ample head, leg and shoulder room for the front and middle row passenger. The third row seats can accommodates children, as the legroom space is very low. Moreover, it also offers decent small utility spaces to keep your sun-glasses, magazines and bottles.
Engine & Transmission
Toyota Innova is available in both petrol and diesel engine option. The gasoline model is packed with a 2.0-litre, 1998cc, 1TR-FE, 4-Inline cylinder engine with EFI (Electronic Fuel Injection) technology. This engine belts out a maximum power output of 132PS at 5600rpm along with a top torque of 181Nm at 4000rpm.
The oil burner is powered by the 2.5-litre, 2KD-FTV, turbocharger, 4-cylinder engine with common rail direct injection fuel supply system. With high performance and lower level of NVH levels, this engine churns out a healthy power output of 102PS at 3600rpm and 200Nm of peak torque at 1400-3200rpm. Both petrol and diesel engines are mated to a five-speed manual transmission, which transmit power to rear wheels of the MPV.
Performance & Handling
The Toyota Innova has a 176mm of ground clearance which ensures hassle-free drive on rugged and bumpy Indian terrains. It provides high stability and comfort during long runs, as it features newly formulated rear 4-link suspension. The front axle of the MPV gets a coil spring double wishbone type suspension, which improves the overall comfort.
The Toyota Innova is available in both petrol and diesel versions. The 2.0L petrol engine offers higher performance and accelerations, which allow the car reach 100 km per hour mark from stand still in just 12.8 seconds. It can also attain a top speed of 170kmph. On the other hand, the 2.5L diesel powered model accelerates the Innova to 100kmph from rest in a little over 15 seconds and it remains stable at a top speed of 149kmph.
Toyota Innova comes loaded with an effective braking mechanism, which avoids any causality during sudden brake application. The front wheels of the MPV gets ventilated disc brakes, while the rear wheels has leading trailing Drum brakes. The MPV also comes equipped with several advanced features including Anti-lock braking system (ABS) with Electronic brakeforce distribution (EBD), which avoids wheel from locking-up and skidding during panic braking and on slippery surfaces.
Toyota Innova is being offered in both petrol and diesel guise. While the petrol version gets the 2.0L engine producing 132PS, the diesel version has 2.5L engine that develops 102PS. The gasoline version of the Innova offers a decent fuel economy of 8.3kmpl in city and 12.5kmpl on highways. On the other hand, the oil burner has been claimed to return a good mileage of 10.2kmpl during city runs and 13.5kmpl on highways.
Toyota has added several advanced safety features to the Innova MPV to keep both passengers and car safe. The vehicle has dual front airbags for driver and its co-passenger, collapsible steering wheel column and Anti-lock braking system which avoids wheel locking on sudden brake application and skidding on slippery roads. The other safety features include anti submarine seats, global outstanding assessment body, load sensing proportion valve, high rigidity frame, side door impact beams, child locks, central locking, immobilizer with theft deterrent system and others.
Toyota Innova has been the segment leader and is aiming to continue its joyful ride in the Indian car market. With subtle changes to exterior and interior, the Innova looks attractive. Ease of driving, high end features like reverse parking camera, chrome embellishments across the model are few of its positive points. Well, it has to be a six-seater MPV, but keeping Indian buyers taste in mind, the company opts for a seven and eight seat options.
This MPV segment in the Indian car market features a limited number of cars. In fact, there are only two other cars, except Innova, in this segment, Mahindra Xylo and Tata Aria. Despite being an excellent product, Tata Aria failed to generate sales. On the other hand, Mahindra Xylo doesn't impress with its ride quality, though offers a lot of features.
Talk about spaciousness, it's Tata Aria that scores more than the Innova. Similarly, when it comes to Safety, comfort and convenience, again Aria has an advantage over the other two, though Innova too offers everything one wishes to be an MPV at this price. Unfortunately, Aria couldn't manage to create the buzz which was created by Innova in India. Under the hood, Mahindra Xylo gets the 2.2L mHawk diesel engine producing 120bhp and 280Nm of top torque, while the Aria is packed with 2.2 litre engine which is tuned to develop 138bhp and 320Nm of torque. Toyota Innova with a 2.5L engine which belts out 101bhp and 200Nm of torque, which on papers is less powerful, but Innova is among one of the best cars out there, in terms of drivability, thanks to its very capable rear wheel drive system.
Space for third row passengers could have been better