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UMW Toyota Motor (UMWT) has officially launched the 2016 Toyota Vios at its headquarters in Shah Alam. Revealed online last week and already available in showrooms, the latest Vios looks rather familiar, but packs plenty of changes under the skin, which we’ll go through here.

There’s an all-new powertrain under the hood of the B-segment sedan, which is now classified as an Energy Efficient Vehicle (EEV). The familiar 1NZ-FE engine and four-speed automatic combo has been replaced by a new 2NR-FE 1.5 litre Dual VVT-i unit, with variable valve timing on both intake and exhaust valves. It’s a member of the NR engine family, which also powers the Toyota Avanza facelift and Perodua Bezza 1.3L, among other cars.

The all-aluminium engine with Iridium spark plugs is paired to a CVT automatic gearbox with a seven-speed Sport Sequential Shiftmatic manual mode. The five-speed manual gearbox option has been retained on the base 1.5J. Outputs are actually down compared to before – at 107 PS at 6,000 rpm (-2 PS) and 140 Nm (-1 Nm) at 4,200 rpm – but drivability and fuel efficiency should see gains.

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Toyota’s own testing revealed that the new powertrain delivers 18% better fuel economy than the previous combo. It was pointed out that if an owner travelled 25,000 km a year, it would translate to savings of 302 litres, or RM544 based on the current RON95 petrol price of RM1.80 a litre. There’s a new Eco Indicator, a small green light to assist your right foot in efficient driving.

Kit count remains largely identical, with halogen reflector headlights, LED daytime running lights, door visors, 15-inch alloy wheels and rear fog lights coming as standard on the outside. Inside, the base model gets keyless entry, push button start, a 2-DIN head unit with Bluetooth connectivity, four-speakers and front footwell illumination.

The E variant adds front fog lights, power-folding wing mirrors with integrated indicators, a 60:40 split-folding rear seat and a rear armrest with cupholders. A DVD-AVX infotainment system with a 6.8-inch touchscreen and a reverse camera is new for 2016.

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Moving up, the G variant piles on projector headlights, an acoustic windscreen, chrome-plated grille and rear number plate garnish, black leather upholstery, a multi-info display, a multifunction leather-wrapped steering wheel and six speakers. Added for 2016 is a Toyota Premium Security and Solar Film tint, which used to be cost option on all but the top TRD Sportivo.

There’s a new variant to make it six in total. As shown here by the red car, the new GX gets smoked projector headlights, a dark chrome grille, two-tone wheels and black-and-tan combination leather seats. Finally, the TRD Sportivo now receives a new bodykit and wheels – distinct from the ones offered on the GX – as well as black exterior trim. Black leather seats with red stitching also feature inside, along with sportier instrument cluster graphics.

Safety-wise, the airbag count stays at two, but the big news is the inclusion of Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) and traction control as standard on all variants, in addition to ABS with EBD, Brake Assist and Isofix rear child seat anchors.

Prices are actually lower than before, from RM1,480 to RM3,680. The base 1.5J retails at RM76,500 for the manual and RM79,800 for the automatic. From here, it’s auto only, with the E priced at RM83,900, the G at RM89,800 and the new GX at RM92,800. The range-topping TRD Sportivo is yours for RM96,400. Prices are on-the-road inclusive of insurance and a five-year, unlimited-mileage transferable warranty. UMWT is throwing in five years of free service for those who buy before December 31.

As usual, the Vios comes with a host of options, including the DVD-AVX system with reverse camera on the J variants (RM3,169), the DVD-AVN navigation system with a seven-inch capacitive touchscreen (RM2,109) and an upgrade to the DVD-AVN system for models with DVD-AVX (RM2,014).

Also offered is the GX’s aerokit (RM2,332) and a choice of either Toyota Essential Solar Film (RM1,166) or Premium Security and Solar Film (RM2,109) tints on the J and E variants. A Digital Video Recorder (dashcam) costs an additional RM636.

Lastly, the colour options have been expanded to include Crimson Spark Red Metallic, Super White II and White Pearl CS (the latter only for the TRD Sportivo), joining the existing Silver Metallic, Medium Silver Metalic and Attitude Black Mica. For a detailed comparison of the variants, check out the 2016 Toyota Vios at CarBase.my.

GALLERY: Toyota Vios 1.5 GX


GALLERY: Toyota Vios 1.5 TRD Sportivo