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Friday, April 29, 2022

Review: 2022 Toyota Veloz 1.5 V

Filipino families love SUVs. Given the choice between owning an MPV or an SUV, they would immediately gravitate towards the latter. That’s a fact, and it’s one that Toyota Motor Philippines can’t afford to ignore.

By launching the all-new Avanza, the automaker has its bases covered in the small MPV segment. But what about the small 7-seater SUV segment? Sure, they have the Rush, but right off the starting block, things weren’t as rosy. It sold well, yes, but it wasn’t exactly a great offering and paled in comparison to its chief rivals, the Honda BR-V, Mitsubishi Xpander Cross, and Suzuki XL7. So, in a flash of marketing brilliance, they’ve decided to spin off the Veloz as its own product line and in the process, call it an SUV.

The gap between the ground and the lowest metal point of the Veloz notwithstanding, the styling is definitely more robust. Whereas the Avanza is a bit more conservative in its lines, this one’s more about aggression. The large hexagonal grille with the Y-shaped inserts give this sort-of RAV4 vibe, and when taken in with the bumper gives a more muscular stance. It’s also worth noting that it comes standard with roof rails and black overfenders—a Philippine market exclusive styling cue.

Inside, there’s no escaping its Avanza foundation. The dash itself eschews sleekness in favor of geometric shapes and sharp angles. It’s quite funky, and actually quite refreshing. Naturally, hard plastics cover just about every surface except for the door arm rests, center console, and an area on the passenger side which is covered in some leather-like material. It also has a Veloz badge there, perhaps as a reminder that you’re not in some hoi polloi MPV.

Aside from those soft bits, the Veloz also gets a leather steering wheel, leather/suede-like combination seats (sans the third row which is all fabric), and some ambient lighting—again, to remind you that you’re not driving a regular Avanza. It also gets a real automatic climate control—not those digital display manual thingies. Even better, the rear vents are cleverly designed to help distribute airflow to both the second- and third rows.

Ergonomically, it’s pretty easy to master the Veloz, but there are some peculiarities. For example, the USB port to connect to the infotainment screen isn’t located in any of the usual locations. Here, it’s actually tucked away in a small pocket on the passenger’s side of the center tunnel. Similar to the Raize, the bunching of the steering wheel controls could use some improvement. The volume is on the left side, while the audio source, next/previous track is on the right. Controls for the Toyota Safety Sense, meanwhile, have been moved from the steering wheel to a panel on the left side of the dashboard.

The driver gets a 7-inch full digital display that’s super clear and can be changed to one of four presets. Meanwhile, at the center is a 9-inch infotainment system which is, again, easy enough to use. That said, it’s a hold out from the Veloz’s right-hand drive origins. Not only are the hard buttons on the wrong side, but engaging Apple CarPlay will show the vertical home screen on the right side, instead of the left.

Overall, there’s nothing to complain about the seats. They offer a solid enough level of bolstering and adjusts six ways for the driver (the Avanza makes do with four). Together with the tilt/telescopic steering column, and it’s quite easy to nail down a comfortable driving position. The driving position is good enough for long stints behind the wheel save for the lack of a foot rest.

The migration to a new unibody platform has allowed Toyota to unlock an almost insane amout of interior room. For the front passengers, there are no complaints as there’s ample head, shoulder, and legroom even for taller occupants. Towards the back though, the Veloz’s narrow body width limits the amount of plus-sized people it can accommodate side-by-side, but if they’re willing to be squeezed in like a pack of sardines, fitting seven adults won’t be a problem. That said, if the person sitting in the third row is tall—say taller than 175 centimeters, it means compromising the legroom across the second- and third-row to budget airline levels. Like the Avanza, the Veloz also has a “Long Sofa” mode that allows the first and second, or second and third rows to connect together with the headrests removed to offer an impromptu place to chill and relax.

In terms of dynamics, it’s very clear that some compromises had to be done to accommodate the Veloz’s rated 7-seater capacity. Compared to the Raize which it shares its platform with, it rides more firmly and gets jolted more easily by cracked pavements or road corrugations. The same jolts also happen to find their way into the cabin, especially through the steering wheel and seats. Regardless, despite its apparent lack of damping, at least there’s a sense of solidity baked in. Moreover, once it’s filled up with more passengers, the ride settles down.

When it comes to the steering, it’s precise at low- and medium-speeds. It’s on the light side, but it’s never disconcerting since it weighs up slightly at speed. Once you reach higher speeds though, the Veloz reaches its threshold quite quickly. Understeer becomes the order of the day, and this requires a bit more steering input (say at the Amorsolo Skyway exit). Thankfully, the chassis still remains stable. The brakes, now upgraded to a four-wheel disc setup do well in scrubbing speed with a nice, solid pedal feel.

With a carryover 1.5-liter 4-cylinder engine pulling around a 1,140-kilogram body, the Veloz isn’t exciting in a straight line either. Beyond the 0 to 100 km/h figures though, subjectively, power does come in early, and this gives it a sense of perkiness. Plus, unlike other CVT-equipped MPVs or SUVs, there’s no sense of slipping or delay when flogging the accelerator. The secret is the D-CVT system. Short for “Dual Mode CVT,” it adds a gear drive to the typical belt-driven system. A clutch pack engages and disengages the gear depending on the driving situation. It also produces excellent fuel economy figures: 11.7 km/L at 36 km/h. If there’s anything negative to the system, it’s that during more spirited drives, the engagement and disengagement of the gear set isn’t as refined and can sometimes unexpectedly cause noticeable shift shock.

Another odd observation centers around the changeable driving modes. The Veloz has three—Normal, Eco, and Sport. However, switching over to the different modes isn’t as intuitive as you think. Instead of cycling through the different modes one after the other, it takes a short button press of the DRIVE button on the steering wheel to active Sport, but a long (almost ten-second press) to active Eco.

Finally, answering Avanza critics, the Veloz now finally comes with Toyota Safety Sense (at least for this top-the-the-line 1.5 V). The Lane Departure Warning is on the sensitive side, but aside from that, you can’t go wrong with its suite of driver assist systems like Pre-Collision System (aka Forward Collision Warning with Autonomous Emergency Braking) and Automatic High Beam. It also gets blind spot monitors with rear cross traffic alert and rear parking sensors with a 360-degree camera. This is on top of the 6 SRS airbags, ABS with EBD, and stability control.

Whether Filipinos will accept the Veloz’s sub-compact SUV label still remains to be seen. But hey, if Mitsubishi can call their Xpander Cross a sub-compact SUV, why can’t Toyota? It doesn’t take a genius to realize that Toyota wants a piece of a segment filled with cladded-up small 7-seater family-friendly vehicles. Regardless of its label though, there’s no denying that Toyota’s done their homework. The Veloz serves up a delectable combination of looks, specs, flexibility, functionality, and safety. For those who want a no-frills MPV, there’s always the Avanza. But for those who want a more complete package, there’s the Veloz.

2022 Toyota Veloz 1.5 V

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Ownership 2022 Toyota Veloz 1.5 V
Year Introduced 2022
Vehicle Classification Sub-compact SUV
Warranty 3 years / 100,000 kilometers
The Basics
Body Type 5-door SUV
Seating 5
Engine / Drive F/F
Under the Hood
Displacement (liters) 1.5
Aspiration NA
Fuel Delivery EFI
Layout / # of Cylinders I4
BHP @ rpm 106 @ 6,000
Nm @ rpm 138 @ 4,200
Fuel / Min. Octane Gasoline / 91~
Transmission CVT
Cruise Control No
Fuel Economy @ Ave. Speed 11.7 km/L @ 36 km/h
Dimensions and Weights
Length (mm) 4,475
Width (mm) 1,750
Height (mm) 1,700
Wheelbase (mm) 2,750
Curb Weight (kg) 1,140
Suspension and Tires
Front Suspension Independent, MacPherson Strut
Rear Suspension Torsion Beam Axle
Front Brakes Vented Disc
Rear Brakes Disc
Parking Brake Electric w/ Auto Hold
Tires Bridgestone Turanza T005A 205/50 R 17 V (f & r)
Wheels Alloy
Safety Features
Airbags 6
Anti-Lock Brakes (ABS) Yes, with EBD
Traction / Stability Control Yes
Parking Sensors Yes, Rear
Parking Camera Yes, 360-degree
Front Seatbelts 3-pt ELR with pre-tensioner x 2
Rear Seatbelts 3-pt ELR x 3 (2nd row),
3-pt ELR x 2 (3rd row)
ISOFIX Child Seat Anchor Yes
Other Safety Features Hill Start Assist
Blind Spot Monitoring
Rear Cross Traffic Alert
Pre-Collision System
Lane Departure Alert
Lead Car Departure Notification
Exterior Features
Headlights LED
Fog Lamps Yes, Front (LED)
Auto Lights Yes
Rain-sensing Wipers No
Tailgate Manual
Interior Features
Steering Wheel Adjust Tilt/Telescopic
Steering Wheel Material Leather
Seating Adjustment (driver) 6-way, Manual
Seating Adjustment (front passenger) 4-way, Manual
Seating Surface Leather/Suede
Folding Rear Seat 60/40, Sliding (2nd row),
50/50 (3rd row)
Sunroof No
Trip Computer Yes
Convenience Features
Power Steering Yes
Power Door Locks Yes
Power Windows Yes
Power Mirrors Yes, with Fold
Rear View Mirror Day/Night
Proximity Key Yes
Climate Control Yes (Front), Manual (Rear)
Audio System Stereo
Smartphone Connectivity Apple CarPlay
Android Auto
# of Speakers 6
Steering Controls Yes


  1. My brother and I both own Toyota vehicles and we both believe in Toyota reliability and durability.
    But looking at the 1.5 engine of the Veloz, Avanza, and Rush, if I have the budget, I will definitely gravitate towards the Okavango or Tiggo 8. Sorry Toyota, putting a sedan engine on heavy 7- seaters is a disappointment.

    1. Okavango is a bit thirsty. Doing 6.2km/L in the city on the average. Goes down to 5.5 in really heavy traffic. Though it hasn't breached 5000 mileage yet.

      But we love the vehicle. The size, toys, ride and even acceleration are more than we expected. Too bad Geely has just implemented huge price increase.

    2. Bat di ka mag innova? Madaming 1.5 7 seater hindi lang toyota. At yung avanza tagal ng 1.57seater yan. My 1.3 nga eh. Mesabi lang

    3. I have the Okavango Urban Plus and I can't say anything negative about it except for it's gas consumption. City driving, it consumes a lot of gas but the 48v battery helps with that. I'm currently around 8-9km/L at city driving, still mastering Smart Coasting and 16-18km/L on long drives.

    4. Agree, the Okavango's package is a winner. On fuel efficiency though, doesn't the mild hybrid help? My family is considering on getting one.

    5. Puro kayo dada ng dada wala naman kayong mga pambili. Tumahimik na lang kayo mas mabuti pa. Mangarap na lang kayo na magkaruon kahit alin sa sinasabi nyo na mas maganda.

    6. Pumikit na lang ang mga naiinggit at wag ng mag iningles at pilipino kayo.

  2. Uly, "insane about of", amount of, "no complains", no complaints, "squeeze in", squeezed in.

    Anyway, how stiff is the ride compared to the horrible Rush? Do kids need to take Bonamine before a long out of town trip? 11.7km/L @ a relatively fast, light traffic 36km/h city speed seem high, how many passengers did you have?

    The upcoming BR-V looks better, esp. from the side where it looks genuinely like a mini SUV. Features are a match assuming HCPI doesn't strip it down compared to the Indon version. The Toyota gets a 360° camera compared to the LaneWatch camera on the BR-V, while the Honda gets the more powerful engine. BTW, when is the local launch for the BR-V expected to be?

    1. Thanks for the proof-read. I still don't wear my reading glasses when I write...maybe I should.

      From the first or second rows, no need for Bonamine. It's definitely leagues better than the Rush in terms of ride. It would be interesting to try out the third row with someone else driving.

      FC is high because we definitely did a highway drive with this one. The average speed went down because of the shoot that we did. If it's purely highway (say, average speed 64 km/h), we were hitting 17.2 km/L.

      BR-V is the next Honda product to be launched. Still no timeline on that one though.

    2. Any news on the BR-V launch?

    3. FC is low. Fuel Efficiency is high.

  3. D new xpander still stuck wd 4 sped trans n just 2 erbags, no sense...LOL

  4. The only vehicle in its class with rear disc brakes believe it or not. With impressive safety with acceptable levels of comfort, the new Veloz IMHO is better than its mainstream competitors, and certainly waaaay better than the crappy Rush LOL.

  5. I heard the Rush will continue with the GR Sport as the TOTL grade this time. Is this true?

    1. Officially, Toyota says the "Rush will continue for now." Notice their emphasis.

      Likely, the Rush take on a different form once it switches platforms, or they might discontinue it altogether.

    2. I hope the Rush becomes a tiny ladder frame 4WD to compete with the Jimny, just like the original gen1 Toyota Rush and Daihatsu Terios. The current Rush makes no sense to buy anymore.

  6. Saw you at the launch where you guys were tinkering at the 2nd row, seems like having some difficulty with something... personally didnt really liked DNGA rebadged as T, but seems this Veloz turned the corner... can you confirm if there really are puddle lights on the V-grade? TIA

    1. We were examining the space for the second and the third row of seats. I was also pointing out that the material for the third row is all fabric compared to the leather/fabric of the first and second rows. I found that to be a weird decision.

      There are no puddle lamps.

    2. there are puddle lights for G and V variants. Toyota calls it welcome light in the spec sheet. Got a Veloz G which was delivered a few days back. Smart key remote has a new layout, press the Toyota logo for lock function.

    3. I stand corrected on the puddle/welcome lights. The Toyota key layout is similar to the Raize and Avanza.

    4. Maybe puddle lamps are brighter than welcome lamps

  7. Daihatsu is wholly owned by toyota n DNGA raize is being sold in japan since 2019. Whats good in avanza n raize is it has more safety features than its competitors, at least here in ph

    1. Cant Toyota just shutter Daihatsu like what Nissan did to Datsun? Suzuki, Honda, Mitsu, Isuzu does not have such....

    2. Toyota relies on Daihatsu for models they sell on emerging countries, the Rush, Avanza/Veloz, Wigo, & Raize are all rebadged Daihatsu's. If Toyota were to shutter the company then they'll have to research and develop cars for all those segments from scratch, and that takes a very long time, not to mention it will be financially taxing....

    3. Dude, Nissan shutting down the Datsun (assuming we are talking about modern Datsun) because poor sale while the Daihatsu is still popular in Japan, Malaysia, and Indonesia.

  8. For the Veloz G, I am curious why Toyota removed Rear Cross Traffic Alert and Blind Spot Monitoring given that Avanza G has it? Given that both models are in a "G" trim, similar/same platform, they should have kept the safety feature at least instead of gutting it since the Veloz is already priced higher than the Avanza.
    They can keep the more advanced TSS Features on the V if they are so inclined, but the Veloz G doesn't make sense to me.

    1. ^Maybe because the T badge just want to show people they can remove or include anything at their pleasure, and customers will still bite

  9. Only thing missing is adaptive cruise control.

    1. That will drive the price even further.

      And if you look closely on the front hood, I think there's no radar for the adaptive cruise control to work.

    2. Yup. No radar. It uses a dual cam setup only.

    3. Even standard cruise control would be welcome. If BR-V with honda sensing is priced similarly, I would probably choose that instead.

    4. Yes but personally I wouldn't mind. The AEB + FCW and blind spot monitoring would be enough to be honest.

      But if I would have a choice, I am willing to trade Lane Departure Warning and Auto high beam for even just a standard cruise control.

  10. I find most Ph market Toyotas are just a lot of form but lack substance. Then the Ch cars came, steadily becoming consistent. Toyota might now be realizing this and would like to nip the competition in the bud. Hope this Veloz is the beginning of better products from Toyota.

  11. Hello Uly! Do you think the D-NGA platform switch to the rear torsion beam suspension versus the previous multi-link will affect the riding performance and ground clearance especially in treacherous rural roads and when fully loaded? (e.g. 7 passengers, sometimes 8 people, with cargo)
    I've seen some previous Avanzas having their ground clearance suspect when fully loaded despiteusing a multi-link suspension.

    Wanted to know your thoughts on it.

    1. We haven't tried loading it with 7 people. Toyota hasn't revealed the Avanza/Veloz's payload capacity too.

      But if we were to use the previous body-on-frame version, its GVW was 1,680 kilograms. Assuming a similar figure in the new Avanza, it should theoretically carry 7 heavy-framed adults.

  12. If you have the budget, just get the Okavango, no regrets.

  13. Third break light inside the glass is so old school. The one on the Raize look better.

  14. Toyota Ph knows that selling these DNGA cars officially as Daihatsu will flop, so they are duping Filipinos (taking advantage of their love for the T badge)... its like one proposing to Kendall Jenner very but got married to a Kardasian instead lols!

    1. H more of marketing strategy than duping pnoys customers as Daihatsu is wholly owned by toyota. DNGA is being both used by toyota n daihatsu in japan, so quality is assured. Cannot say d same wd ford terrirory

    2. There is a reason why Toyota has Diahatsu and Lexus.

  15. Automatic climate control has only 1 fixed mode, airflow for upperbody and no options for airflow towards the feet nor for the windshield. Toyota even placed plastic coverings for the windshield vents, similar to the Rush and Avanza

    1. Yes. Very true. The airflow function is fixed.

  16. Andaming maraming alam. Kayo na magagaling.

    1. One needs to know what they will be paying for. Some people just know a scam when they see one

    2. Di namin kasalanan bobo ka

  17. Freedom of specs...LOL

  18. 11.7 km/L @ 36 km/h is bad. Its much worse than a Fortuner.

  19. Once and for all, can you please confirm if the Veloz V variant has cruise control, even just the standard cruise control. I am getting conflicting reports from different reviewers of other car sites like Zigwheel or Top Gear.

  20. I am in a quandary between the Veloz vs the HRV. Which do you think is better? Thanks

    1. Do you need 7 seats or not? If not, get the HR-V, it's more powerful & better-equipped, shorter, easier to maneuver & park.

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