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July 9, 2024

Review: 2024 Toyota Raize 1.0 Turbo


The normally conservative Toyota quickly smelled blood in a segment none of its Japanese compatriots were interested in: the small SUV segment. With other Japanese brands having this couldn’t care less attitude for the segment, Toyota went in with the Raize in 2020. The rest, you could say, is history.

Selling a thousand units a month on average, the Raize is one of the country’s best-selling models. In fact, roughly 3 to 4 percent of all new vehicles bought in the Philippines is a Raize. As such, my review could be academic and moot since people will buy it no matter what. But in a pleasant surprise, this small SUV’s not just a best-seller; it’s pretty darn good too considering its P 1.098-million price tag.

If you spend all your energy judging a car based simply on a platform, you’re not getting the whole picture. It may be “just a Daihatsu,” but it’s worth remembering that Toyota tapped them to take the lead in small car development in the first place; questionable engineering certification issues notwithstanding.



Incorporating TNGA know-how into the Raize’s platform has, pardon the pun, raised the levels of build quality of small SUVs. Compared to some of its rivals which have the rigidity of play putty, this one feels like it’s actually made of steel and aluminum. Driven through our less than perfect roads, it doesn’t get upset by smaller bumps or corrugations. You can’t mistake the ride quality for being plush, but at least it’s not crashy either. Larger potholes, however, will make its presence felt.

As an urban runabout, the Raize’s steering is well-suited to its character. While it does lack in feel, there’s a fair amount of precision present at low- and medium speeds. The weighting (and feel) is close to the second-generation Yaris (XP90) which I once owned. Any issues? Only two as far as I can tell. One, the level of grip present is tuned for everyday driving scenarios which means each time you engage the gas a bit too hard, especially through a corner, you’d be hit back with a small dose of torque steer. More than once, I found myself making a quick steering correction midway through a bend. Second, that steering starts to lose its weightiness and precision at highway speeds; so, if you do a lot of high-speed driving, consider that a warning.

Under the hood, you find a 1.0-liter 3-cylinder turbo. The 98 horsepower, 140 Nm of torque outputs read like run-of-the-mill numbers and on the road, and it performs as much. But considering its light curb weight (it weighs less than a City or Vios), it feels peppy, especially when it comes to stop-and-go traffic. A firm, but brief squeeze of the gas pedal is all that’s needed to get it up to speed. The initial throttle tip-in is jumpy, so controlling your right foot is key to getting away smoothly. And because it uses a CVT, it’s best to maintain momentum and be gradual with the gas inputs instead of treating it like an on/off switch.



Now, a word on the turbo: don’t let it lead you to think it’s a hot hatch. The boost is there to get the Raize up to speed, which in turn delivers good fuel efficiency (12.5 km/L), but there’s no kick in the back. As to the smoothness of the motor, it cannot match a 4-cylinder’s better innate balance, but all things considered, it’s not bad either. There are some vibrations (evident if you touch or lean on an open door at idle), but from behind the driver’s seat, it’s alright.

The Raize also has a couple of toys to keep the driver busy. It has paddle shifters, a Sport mode on the transmission, and even a Power (PWR) mode. You can even engage the Sport and Power modes (Sport Power?) together. But, switching on these various modes and functions will ultimately just result in a more sensitive throttle pedal and copious amounts of engine noises. Do your passengers a favor and just drive it sensibly.

Given its price positioning, there’s not much padded plastic to go by inside, but almost everything is well-finished. The Raize gets plus points for its use of geometric surfacing in the areas by the instrument cluster and infotainment system as well as its liberal use of Toyota switchgear (the old-school Daihatsu bits are limited to the power window controls which are, in my opinion, downright awful), and wealth of cubby holes. Minus points go to the flimsy rearview mirror.



There are also some peculiar executions when it comes to ergonomics, centered around the passive entry system. Unlike other smart entry systems where you just yank the door handle or press a button to unlock, here, you have to touch or slide your fingers on the two notches on the door handles. The same goes for the hatch where the button to open it isn’t located at the center beneath the Toyota logo as you’d expect, but it’s offset slightly to the right. But hey, at least it gets a full-sized spare tire under there.

Inside, the nuisances are limited to the layout of the steering wheel itself. Normally, carmakers bunch together switches based on what they do whether they control the infotainment system, the displays, or driver assist systems. Here, Toyota opted to put the audio controls on the left side of the tiller below the display controls, while the rest—audio source, next/previous track, and telephony is on the right. To make matters worse, that “PWR” button on the right side isn’t there to turn the audio system on or off—that’s to add more engine noise.

On the other hand, the 7-inch full digital instrument panel is super clear and can be changed to display one of four presets. At the center, there’s a 9-inch infotainment system. The typical buttons—Home, Volume Up/Down, Hands-Free, and Favorite are on the wrong side, but hitting the large on-screen menus is easy. Oh, and at least Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard. Curiously, despite being an older system compared to the one found on the new Corolla Cross, this system’s much more responsive and less buggy.



The seats offer a solid level of bolstering, but the most comfortable driving position I could find it a bit upright. With the large glass area, visibility is excellent throughout and the addition of front and rear parking sensors, and a reverse camera with guidelines helps in tight space navigation even more. The steering wheel only adjusts for tilt, but it’s not that big of a deal. What is an issue is the lack of a foot rest.

Over to the back, given the Raize’s small footprint, the rear space is actually pretty good as well. There are three headrests and three 3-point seatbelts there. The flat, short cushions do equate to less support on the thighs. There’s no center arm rest too.

The Raize Turbo doesn’t come with Toyota Safety Sense but having Blind Spot Monitoring and Rear Cross Traffic Alert is more than good enough. Having lived with this tech for quite some time, these are invaluable especially when trying to navigate around motorcycles. Heck, I’d probably rank BSM and RCTA more useful on our roads than forward collision warning or automatic braking. Mind you, these two safety features are on top of 6 SRS airbags, ABS with EBD, stability control, front and rear parking sensors, and a reverse camera with guidelines.



The apathy of other Japanese brands towards the sub-compact SUV segment means that Toyota’s making a killing with the Raize. But its showroom success isn’t just down to a case of: because there’s no other choice. Buyers in this price point could easily cross shop with other small sedans and hatchbacks too. The Toyota Raize however remains a solid choice. It doesn’t necessarily excel in one particular aspect, but it does well in all of them. For those in the market for a small SUV, this should be on their shortlist. I know it’s on mine.

2024 Toyota Raize 1.0 Turbo

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Bottom Line
Pros Zippy urban handling, feature-laden for the price.
Cons Not quick enough to warrant the "Turbo" badge, can be upset by larger potholes.
TL;DR It must be on your shortlist of small SUVs to consider.
Ownership
Year Introduced 2022
Warranty 3 years / 100,000 kilometers
The Basics
Body Type Sub-compact SUV
Seating 5
Engine / Drive F/F
Under the Hood
Displacement (liters) 1.0
Aspiration Turbocharged
Fuel Delivery Direct Injection
Layout / # of Cylinders I3
Maximum Output (PS @ rpm) 98 @ 6,000
Maximum Torque (Nm @ rpm) 140 @ 2,400-4,000
Fuel / Min. Octane Gasoline / ~91
Transmission CVT
Cruise Control No
Fuel Economy (km/L) @ Ave. Speed (km/h) 12.5 km/L @ 18 km/h,
14.3 km/L @ 26 km/h
Fuel Tank Size (L) 36
Dimensions and Weights
Length (mm) 4,030
Width (mm) 1,710
Height (mm) 1,605
Wheelbase (mm) 2,525
Curb Weight (kg) 1,040
Suspension and Tires
Front Suspension Independent, MacPherson Strut
Rear Suspension Torsion Beam Axle
Front Brakes Vented Disc
Rear Brakes Drum
Parking Brake Hand-type
Tires Dunlop Enasave EC300+
205/50R17 H (f & r)
Recommended Tire Pressure (PSI) 35 all
Wheels Alloy
Safety Features
Airbags 6
Anti-Lock Brakes (ABS) Yes, with EBD
Traction / Stability Control Yes
Parking Sensors Yes, Front & Rear
Parking Camera Yes, Rear
Front Seatbelts 3-pt ELR w/ pre-tensioners x 2
Rear Seatbelts 3-pt ELR x 3
ISOFIX Child Seat Anchor Yes
Advanced Driver Assist System None
Other Safety Features Hill Start Assist
Blind Spot Monitoring
Rear Cross Traffic Alert
Exterior Features
Headlights LED
Fog Lamps Yes, Front
Light Operation Automatic
Wiper Operation Variable Intermittent
Tailgate Manual
Interior Features
Steering Wheel Adjust Tilt, Manual
Steering Wheel Material Leather
Seating Adjustment (driver) 6-way, Manual
Seating Adjustment (front passenger) 4-way, Manual
Seating Surface Leatherette/Fabric
2nd Row 60/40 Split-Fold
3rd Row None
Sunroof None
Multi-Information Display / Size Yes, 7-inch
Convenience Features
Power Steering Yes
Power Door Locks Yes
Power Windows Yes
Power Mirrors Yes, w/ Fold
Rear View Mirror Day/Night
Proximity Key Yes
Climate Control Automatic
Audio System Stereo
USB
Bluetooth
Wireless Charger No
Infotainment Display / Size 9-inch
Smartphone Connectivity Apple CarPlay
Android Auto
# of Speakers 6
Steering Controls Yes

26 comments:

  1. They are selling well because Stupid Suzuki stopped selling the Vitara and the new Grand Vitara.

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    Replies
    1. I honestly think that given the irony of Toyota's ownership in Suzuki, then its also because in reality that these car companies from a Confucian country (Japan) like Toyota, Daihatsu and Suzuki are more divided with each other than to be united, which is the opposite to Volkswagen which has many of its brands (like Skoda) to share hardware with its German master - so I think while it maybe good for Toyota to partner with Nissan or to have the former sell Suzuki to the latter (which may benefit Nissan and even Mitsubishi) then I think Toyota would use Volkswagen hardware for all of its cars as Toyota used to partner with VW in the 1990s...

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    2. They are not in the same category and suzuki vitara specifically the grand vitara is more expensive than the raize so you cannot compare apples to oranges.

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    3. Well, that's doesn't matter as long as if you already know that Suzuki and Daihatsu (also Isuzu which was also a party of General Motors) are no longer active in the US and Canadian markets - and also Skoda of Czechia and SEAT of Spain (by Volkswagen) are not even in the North American market either while the Suzuki Grand Vitara is a practically out of date car with the technology saying it all. So I think if Toyota were to partner with Volkswagen again - if you remember the fact VW rebadged the Hilux in the 1990s - then I also think Toyota would instead rebadge and sell Skodas for markets where the Czech carmaker is not present nor it is active like I say would be Australia and New Zealand. (As well as Japan and North America and so instead of that Daihatsu thing then Toyota may see itself marketing Czech VWs being rebadged as Toyotas especially in that logic Skoda cars are modern, rugged and practical even when they're not sold elsewhere overseas unlike their VW/Audi counterparts.)

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  2. You'd shortlist a car plagued with factory defects and recalls?

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    1. Those recalls have been addressed already.

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    2. Then buy a china car brands that wont issue a recall unless rear axle separated. China car brands have been here in ph for 2 decades and lo and behold....they never issued recall.

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    3. Buying a car with previous defects and recalls is like an adult video actress trying to go mainstream.

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  3. Seems like the new Raize's have improved interior build? When the first few units arrived, the interior rattles were awful and the panel gaps were atrocious. Some examples even had the armrest padding on the door dislodge already! The interior was poorly built even by 1M PHP standards, it felt like it belonged to an old Suzuki at 500k PHP. I felt like Toyota rushed the production of those first few Raize's to keep up with the high demand, but now that everything has stabilized, they can actually work on the quality control.

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    Replies
    1. Yeah your right, quality just improved recently. Toyota japan head office had audited the indonesia toyota plant manufacturing process, along with its suppliers, hence the improved quality.

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  4. Turbo loaded, features packed, best value for money

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  5. It probably is a good car as it keeps its value. Second hand units still cost a bit more than expected.

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  6. As the author says and the sales figures suggest that the raize may be imperfect but no car is perfect. People like it that is why it is selling so well. Those who insist it is bad then don't buy it. Raize is doing so well it won't miss sales from its detractors. Dnga number one haha

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  7. I remember the Raize Turbo was already reviewed last 2022. Is there a difference between the 2022 and the 2024 models to have a second review?

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    1. No. There are no differences. In fact, some parts of the article are similar to the 2022 review.

      Consider this is more of a second take...we borrow cars to review them. We don't borrow for the sake of borrowing. When Toyota lent us the Raize again, we had to come up with an output.

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    2. Thank you for the clarification. Toyota's timing may have something to with the Kia Sonet. Honda missed an oppurtunity by not launching the LHD WR-V here.

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    3. So is the interior build quality of the 2024 just as crap as the 2022 model?

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  8. The only thing i like about the raize is the 91octane fuel for a turboed engine.

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  9. Kia Sonet,Chery Tiggo 5x Pro,JAC JS4 and entry level variants of the GAC Emzoom and Geely Coolray are way better alternatives

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    1. I'd be willing to give the Kia Sonet a try.

      Definitely pass on the 5x Pro...poor dynamics to the point it felt unsafe.

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    2. Yeah agree, I'll go for the Kia Sonet as well.

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    3. Top of the line sonet has only 2 airbags, only the top of the line sonet has stability control and hill start assist (stnadard on all raize variants)

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  10. Most owners would drive this alone or with just one other passenger riding, which is well and good for the most part. My issue is with the back seats. It feels like you’re riding in a jeepney. Don’t take my word - go try it yourself.

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  11. I suggest Toyota would have taken over Ford both financially and mechanically so that the former would have divert (Toyota) itself from the Daihatsu affair, thus Toyota would use its ownership in Suzuki - Daihatsu's competitor - to supply its products (like the Ertiga) to Ford and in turn Toyota would benefit from Ford since the latter sells well in the Mexican market for example, especially Ford would find common ground with Toyota just as Ford would have in common with Suzuki since buyers of the Focus, Escape, Fiesta and EcoSport were luring themselves to buy the Swift, Ertiga and Vitara. (Remember General Motors' Geo brand? It was the ideal concept of an American carmaker that had most of its products being based on Japanese vehicles and a Toyota-Ford partnership means its Geo 2.0 hence equals Toyota plus Isuzu plus Suzuki plus Ford plus minus GM...)

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  12. The "S" on the transmission is called "Slope mode" not Sport mode. It's for climbing elevated roads. The "pwr" button is actually the sport mode.

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