In Europe, Toyota have revealed newly updated versions of their funky C-HR crossover. Of course, there are the expected tweaks and cosmetic tuck ups to set it apart on the road - albeit not very obviously - from earlier examples, but the primary focus of this refresh is the addition of new powertrains.
The better news is that, in addition to the current duo of engines available locally, Australian buyers will be receiving a hybrid-powered variant for the 2020 model year - at long last.
Due Down Under in December, the hybridised C-HR will come in the form of its 2WD Koba spec, the model’s best-selling variant, teaming a 1.8-litre naturally aspirated Atkinson-cycle four-cylinder petrol engine with an electric motor that delivers 54kW and 163Nm. However, their combined output is level with the 1.2-litre turbo mill at 85kW.
In European markets, the revised C-HR range will receive an additional powertrain option that’s a little more enticing. To be specific, it’s also a hybrid, but one that benefits from a larger and more powerful 2.0-litre four-cylinder from Toyota’s new Dynamic Force engine family.
Paired with an electric motor more or less identical to the one found in the lesser 1.8-litre hybrid that we’ll be (finally) receiving, the 2.0-litre combo produces a decently punchy 137kW. This quicker variant also receives sharper steering and new suspension components to improve ride and handling, because life isn’t fair.
Drive for the incoming C-HR 2WD Koba Hybrid will be transmitted through a CVT to the front wheels and deliver a claimed combined fuel consumption of just 4.3-litres/100km, a significant improvement over the 1.2-litre turbo alternative at 7-litres/100km.
Toyota Australia’s strategy might be more focused on the longer-term goal of slowly transitioning their existing and prospective customer base to embracing electrified versions of existing models. The Prius pioneered this effort on a global scale, to be sure, but that baton has also been passed to the new hybridised Camry, all-new Corolla hatch, and RAV4 as well.
As mentioned, the 2020 Toyota C-HR will include some exterior alterations. These include a restyled front bumper with new LED illuminators front and rear, new daytime running lights (DRLs) and a set of new design alloys.
Inside, an upgraded multimedia package means improved connectivity and access to Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration displayed through an 8-inch touchscreen. Toyota is also said to have equipped the crossover with a range-wide sound dampening overhaul to improve cabin quietness and ride refinement.
We’ll have to wait for pricing and more detailed specifications to be revealed closer to the updated C-HR’s local launch in a couple of months to get a full picture of the spruced-up range.