The latest news surrounding the Toyota Raize indicates that the subcompact crossover will be making its debut sometime in 2022. It’d be an understatement to say that the model will be well-received by the Philippine market given that Toyota has had a lot of Daihatsu-derived models that knocked it out of the park in terms of popularity and sales.
Models like the Wigo, Rush, and Avanza have all had the pleasure of being best-sellers at some point, and the Raize could make a huge splash when it finally launches. Toyota Philippines is in dire need of a subcompact crossover since it is one of the only major manufacturers left in the market without an entry. So there is no doubt that we’re excited and that you should be excited for the arrival of the Raize. As such, here is what we want to see from Toyota’s first-ever subcompact crossover.
The Raize can either be had with a 1.2-liter naturally aspirated three-cylinder or a 1.0-liter turbocharged three-cylinder motor. The turbo motor is the one that we want to see in the Philippines with the 1.2-liter serving as a base motor for the market. While the 1.2-liter engine makes a decent 87 hp, the 96 hp output of the 1.0-liter turbo will be much better. Paired with the remarkable 140 Nm of torque, and you’ll get a rather fun-to-drive car. This engine will definitely come at a premium and will be more expensive, so that’s where the 1.2-liter can come in as the option for budget shoppers.
Paddle shifters and a manual transmission
Speaking of being fun to drive, a city slicker like the Raize is best paired with an automatic transmission, but other markets outfit the little crossover with paddle shifters. Granted, the model will come with a continuously-variable transmission (CVT), but it sure beats the alternative of having no “gears” to play around with when you want to. Of course, this feature will be reserved for the top-spec variants with the 1.0-liter turbo motor. There is also hope for a traditional five-speed manual transmission to be included in the lineup for lower trim levels, but it is likely that only the 1.2-liter motor will be the only engine option.
Digital instrumentation and high-quality infotainment
We hope that the Philippine-spec Raize gets the TFT and LCD display cluster as standard. Toyota noted in its global launch material that the cluster will be standard for the models and variants for Toyota Japan. Hopefully, we get at least one, if not all, variants in the Philippine lineup equipped with this cluster. The TFT screen can display a myriad of information which includes your tachometer, odometer, fuel economy, and even your display for the Toyota Safety Sense suite of features. Off to the side, we have a less flashy digital speedometer and a fuel meter that’s lit up with white backlighting.
Off to the side, we wish to see Toyota’s Display Audio make an appearance. We’re not too fond of the basic head units found in most Toyota models, but they come with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay at least. The display audio unit will have a larger touchscreen that comes in at 9 inches, over the 7-inch standard that most Toyota units adhere to.
Toyota Safety Sense
Speaking of the Toyota Safety Sense suite, we hope to see the whole package in the lineup. Historically, Toyota Motor Philippines packaged this feature set in its top-of-the-line variants, as is the case with the Toyota Fortuner LTD and the Hiace Super Grandia to name a few. Features like lane-keep assist, blind-spot monitoring, adaptive cruise control with low-speed follow are among the more notable inclusions that sparked our interest while testing the suite.
Being a subcompact crossover, however, the Raize could get quite expensive with the added features. This could potentially propel the model’s price point up several notches and out of the reach of many. Still, however, it’s something worth considering especially since there are quite a few buyers out there who can afford the extra cost.
On that note, the top-of-the-top-of-the-line in the Raize lineup should be the GR-S. While some may argue that sporty elements have no place on a city-slicking crossover, Toyota’s rendition of the Raize looks fairly decent and could appeal to a lot of Gazoo Racing fans here in the country. Just like the Vios GR-S, you get body kits, unique alloy wheels, and a spruced-up interior with new seats and some red accents.