Toyota is the latest global automaker to join the mini SUV bandwagon as reported by Carsensor.net. According to the report, Toyota is planning to create a compact crossover SUV based on the modular Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA).
The TNGA platform, an equivalent of VW's MQB, would underpin a wide array of upcoming Toyota products starting from the next gen Prius. The new compact crossover in question is likely to succeed the JDM Toyota Ist (Toyota Urban Cruiser in Europe).
Here is a speculative rendering of the Toyota compact crossover by Japanese automobile magazine MagX. With straight lines, tall stance and short overhangs, the rendering portrays the model to be a grown up Japanese Kei car. Toyota is expected to unveil a design concept sometime in 2015, previewing the mini SUV.
The powertrain lineup and other technical details are scarce but expect the crossover to be offered with four-cylinder engines.
The Toyota crossover would slot below the RAV4 in the automaker's global product portfolio. The new Toyota mini SUV is expected to be a competitor for the Honda Vezel (Honda HR-V in the US), the Nissan Juke and the Hyundai ix25.
A senior official of Toyota Kirloskar Motor recently remarked that the company will focus on premium end of the market rather than exploring the sub-Liva segment. Vast open spaces in TKM's lineup below the Fortuner for a new crossover to be positioned exist today but what matters is whether there is interest at Toyota's headquarters for a smaller vehicle as product strategies for India have generally been conservative.