Used Toyota Auris (2013-2019)

Safe and sensible, the Toyota Auris won’t set your world alight but should be reliable and economical

Strengths & Weaknesses

Strengths 

Reliable, with a long warranty
Efficient engines and hybrid option
Practical, sturdy interior

Weaknesses 

Not very exciting to drive
Noisy automatic gearbox
'Beaky' bonnet design
Toyota Auris prices from £7,495   Finance from £121 per month

Reliable, economical, well equipped and supported with a long, five-year new-car warranty, the Toyota Auris is a solid used buy. It’s a little unexciting to drive but that aside, it’ll reward you with service you can rely on, with low running costs.

It faces some very talented rivals, chief among them the VW Golf, Vauxhall Astra and Ford Focus. Others include the Mazda 3, Kia Ceed and Renault Megane. Unlike the majority of cars from the same era, the Auris is available as a hybrid model, which makes it one of the most efficient cars of its type.

If you want a little more character to go with the frugality, the car was replaced in 2019 with the new Toyota Corolla.

The Auris is available in two body styles: an estate, called the Touring Sports, and the five-door hatchback. It’s not the roomiest hatch but it makes the best of what space it does have. For example, it has a flat floor where rivals have a raised centre ridge running the length of the cabin. The benefit of this is felt particularly in the rear where a third, centre passenger can sit comfortably, without having to position their feet either side of said tunnel.

Another example of the Auris’s refreshing thinking is the way the rear seatbacks (the seat is split 60/40 as standard) can recline as well as be folded almost completely flat. The boot has a false floor, too, so you can stash valuables out of sight. Lots of storage solutions (cubbyholes, cupholders and trays) dotted throughout the cabin complete the picture.

Build quality is good and a match for rivals from Hyundai and Kia, but the materials used feel cheap - far off the soft-touch finishes that you'll find in the Volkswagen Golf, or even a Vauxhall Astra.

The layout isn't particularly attractive either. Dashboard controls are arranged logically, but the square-shaped buttons look like they have been bought in a job lot, rather than being ergonomically designed so they are appealing to look at and use. Toyota’s Touch 2 seven-inch screen is standard on all versions except Active, the basic one. The graphics look a decade old and the menus are fussy.

Unless you choose the noisy and jerky automatic gearbox, the Auris is a generally quiet car. It’s comfortable, too, thanks to its soft suspension that absorbs bumps in the road. The steering is light but you don’t get a sense that it’s connected with the wheels, so at times, you can’t tell how sharply the car will turn - you end up steering one way then another to stay on track. But if you value comfort over an involving driving experience then you’ll get on with the Auris.

The hybrid system is most efficient in traffic at variable speeds, where the motor and battery recover energy that's usually lost when slowing down, then use it to assist the engine during acceleration. The car is also frugal at steady speed: you can expect around 58mpg according to the Equa Index, which estimates fuel economy in real-world driving.

The Auris has a five-star Euro NCAP safety rating, although this was awarded in 2013. since then the test has become even tougher.

Last Updated 

Monday, April 15, 2019 - 18:15

Key facts 

Warranty: 
5 years
Boot size: 
360 litres
Width: 
1760mm
Length: 
4330mm
Height: 
1475mm
Tax (min to max): 
£0 to £145

Best Toyota Auris for... 

Toyota Auris 1.4 D-4D Business Edition
No road tax and up to 83mpg, the 1.4 D-4D is the economy champ in the Auris line-up. Fortunately, you don’t have to slum it – it’s only available in well-equipped Business Edition.
Toyota Auris 1.6 D-4D Business Edition
Not as miserly as the 1.4 D-4D but fuel economy of up to 67mpg is still family-friendly. What’s more, being more powerful, the 1.6 D-4D makes lighter work of long journeys and heavy loads.
Toyota Auris 1.6 D-4D Design
It's not the quickest car to accelerate from a standstill, but this version of the Auris is faster when you need it most - to increase your speed when you're overtaking or joining a motorway.
Toyota Auris 1.33 Active
With the more modern and efficient 1.2 T in the line-up, it would be a mistake to buy this old-tech 1.33, unless your budget won’t stretch further.

Toyota Auris History 

  • November 2012 Production begins and Auris goes on sale with prices starting at £14,945 for Active 1.33.
  • July 2014 Auris voted most reliable new medium car by Which? with a rating of 98.8%.
  • January 2015 Auris models built up to Nov 2014 recalled over risk of oil build-up in turbo causing risk of fire.
  • March 2015 New 1.2-litre turbocharged petrol engine, badged 1.2 T, joins the line-up. Interior and exterior updated.
  • July 2015 Business Edition and Design trims join the line-up.
  • August 2015 Auris Hybrid models built up to May 2014 recalled over loss of power.
  • May 2016 Toyota’s Touch 2 multimedia system with three years’ map and connectivity updates introduced.
  • February 2019 Auris replaced with the Toyota Corolla.

Understanding Toyota Auris car names 

  • Auris
  • Engine
    1.8 Hybrid
  • Trim level
    Excel
  • GEarbox
    CVT
  • Engine
    This is the 1.8-litre petrol-electric hybrid model that’s powered by a petrol engine and an electric motor whose batteries are recharged by the action of the car braking, as well as by the petrol engine. Other engines are a 1.33 petrol, a smaller and more modern turbocharged one called the 1.2 T and two diesels, a 1.4 D-4D and a 1.6 D-4D (‘4’ refers to the number of cylinders it has).
  • Trim level
    Excel is the most expensive trim. There are five trims in total, each with different levels of standard equipment
  • GEarbox
    Most engines come with a six-speed manual gearbox but the 1.8 Hybrid has an automatic, a type known as a continuously variable transmission (CVT). This is also offered with the 1.2 T

Toyota Auris Engines 

Petrol: 1.33, 1.2  Hybrid: 1.8 Hybrid
Diesel: 1.4 D, 1.6 D

The least powerful petrol engine - the 1,33 motor is cheap but doesn't have much else to recommend it, as it;s slow and not very economical, compared with the rest of the range.

For an economical but punchy petrol engine, the 1.2 T, has an official fuel economy figure of 61.4mpg in automatic form (the manual version is a little less). This same engine can accelerate from 0-62mph in 10.5 seconds, too, which is respectable, if not brisk performance.

For better fuel economy, the 1.4 D-4D diesel engine has the most frugal fuel economy figures of all Aurises, at 83.1mpg. Low carbon dioxide emissions make it a tax-efficient choice for company car drivers. However, it’s as slow as the sluggish 1.33 petrol engine. Not only that, it’s only available in Business Edition trim, which pushes up its price.

The better option is the 1.6 D-4D. It can't match the other diesel's fuel economy, but it's more frugal than the 1.2 petrol car and just as quick.

You might think that the hybrid car is the most efficient, but that's not the case if you go by the official fuel economy figures, which favour the 1.4 diesel. However, it's likely to use less fuel in town drivign, where the hybrid system recovers energy that's usually lost in stop-start driving, and then uses it to boost the car's acceleration and reduce fuel consumption. 

Fuel

Fuel economy

Power

Acceleration

Top speed

1.33

petrol

51.4mpg

99hp

0-62mph: 12.6s

108mph

1.2T

petrol

58.9 - 61.4mpg

116hp

0-62mph: 10.1 - 10.5s

121 - 124mph

1.8 Hybrid

petrol-hybrid

78.5mpg

136hp

0-62mph: 10.9s

111mph

1.4 D-4D

diesel

83.1mpg

90hp

0-62mph: 12.5s

111mph

1.6 D-4D

diesel

67.3mpg

112hp

0-62mph: 10.5s

121mph

Toyota Auris Trims 

Active, Icon, Business Edition, Design, Excel

At first glance, the cheapest Active trim level looks bare, with steel wheels instead of more stylish alloys. But it's not too bad a choice, coming with electric mirrors, lots of safety tech, Bluetooth wireless phone connectivity, automatic air conditioning, a 60/40-split rear seat and a 4.2-inch dashboard screen as standard.

Things get more interesting at Icon level. Features include alloy wheels, a reversing camera, DAB digital radio, a seven-inch display and power windows all-round.

Aimed at business users but also available to private buyers, Business Edition trim adds heated seats, power-adjustable lumbar support on the driver’s seat, a sat nav and cruise control. It costs the same as the next trim, Design. This focuses more on style so features larger alloy wheels and rear privacy glass. They come at the expense of a sat nav and heated seats so you must decide which is more important to you. 

Top-spec Excel brings even more style and more convenience features including Intelligent Parking Assist. Sat-nav is standard, as well as wi-fi, dual-zone air-conditioning and a unique alloy wheel design.

Toyota Auris Reliability and warranty 

The Auris ranks 28 out of 150 cars in Auto Express magazine’s Driver Power 2016 owner satisfaction survey. In fact there are three more Toyota models ahead of it, which reinforces Toyota's reliable reputation.

It ranks slightly lower, at 42, for build quality but this measure can be subjective as much as objective. For example, some interior plastics do not look or feel good as those in a VW Golf but that doesn’t mean they’ll crumble in your fingers.

Used Toyota Auris 

The Auris has all the hallmarks of a great used car buy: a strong image, a reputation for quality underpinned by a long warranty, and a range of economical engines that are also inexpensive to tax. It loses quite a bit of value in its first year, with a one-year-old 1.6 D-4D costing almost 40 per cent less than new - good news for second-hand buyers.