Formerly known as the Scion iA and then the Yaris iA and derived from Mazda, the 2019 Yaris will come in three grades when it goes on sale this fall: the L, LE and premium XLE. The Yaris iA previously came with a single spec with the only choice being between a six-speed manual or automatic transmission.
All trim levels come with Toyota's Active Safety System, which includes features like dynamic stability control, antilock brakes and brake assistance, and Low-Speed Pre-Collision System, which scans the road ahead for potential vehicle collisions and deploys an audio-visual alert and braking assistance. There's also a shark-fin antenna on the roof for available satellite radio and power outside mirrors.
Fog lights, a new rear lip spoiler and 16-inch alloy wheels with a dark gunmetal finish come standard on the LE and XLE, which also add power outside heated mirrors with LED turn-signal indicators. Opting for the XLE gets you leatherette-trimmed front seats, leather-trimmed steering wheel, shift knob and parking brake, an HVAC system with automatic climate control, automatic LED headlights, rain-sensing wipers and illuminated entry. The 2019 Yaris will also come in seven color options.
The direct-injection 1.5-liter four-cylinder engine returns, offering 106 horsepower and 103 pound-feet of torque. Handling is influenced by a high-tensile steel body and frame, stiff springs and McPherson struts on the front suspension and torsion-beam suspension in the rear. Drivers can even opt for Sport driving mode. Disc brakes handle the front wheels, while the rear wheels are fitted with drum brakes.
Inside, the standard 7-inch touchscreen features voice recognition, remote interface, steering wheel controls and Bluetooth integration. It also shows the view from the backup camera, which is standard on all trim levels.