Toyota C-HR Carves Its Niche While Waiting for Corolla To Graduate

The Toyota C-HR is the most visually provocative of the new crop of small crossovers. It takes the angular stealth fighter cues from its upmarket Lexus SUV cousins, adding intricate sweeping characters lines.

Sporty touches like articulated vents and a low slatted front air intake, are enhanced by a modern Toyota logo centered crest-line that sweeps back into a pair of low-profile headlamp assemblies.

Astride vortex-styled 18” alloy wheels the Toyota C-HR looks track ready … and some tuner versions are running circuits with insane 600 horsepower upgrades. Alas all three Toyota CH-R models – LE, XLE and Limited – come with a 144-horsepower 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine paired with an efficient CVT transmission, that is at best sluggish.

The jaunty little C-HR shows off excellent handling thanks to MacPherson strut front suspension and a large diameter stabilizer, but begs for a power upgrade, which might happen after the new larger 2020 Corolla hits the market this year.

Priced in the $21,000 to $26,000 range, with the standard Safety Sense package and hot new colors like Blue Eclipse Metallic and Ruby Flare Pearl, the Toyota C-HR is a strong entry in this crowded field.