Last year, the Yaris replaced the Echo inToyota's lineup as its least expensive new vehicle. As in the 2007 model year, two Yaris body styles are available for 2008: a three-door liftback and a four-door sedan.
The sedan rides on a longer wheelbase (100.4 inches vs. 96.9 in) than the Liftback model, and can be viable transportation for small families while the hatchback is ideal as a commuter that can also handle longer trips when the need arises.
Standard under the hood of both vehicles is a 1.5-liter, four-cylinder engine producing 106 horsepower - adequate for a small, light car of this type. Buyers can choose either a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic. All models come standard with 14-inch wheels and air conditioning; major safety features such as anti-lock brakes and side-impact airbags may be ordered optionally.
The 2008 Yaris Liftback Sport model is a new addition to the lineup. The Yaris Liftback Sport gets body-color bumpers and side rocker panels. In addition it adds sport seats, a leather-trimmed steering wheel and shifter knob, 15-inch wheels, a rear defroster, a rear wiper, and an audio system with MP3 capability and an auxiliary jack.
For 2008 all Yarises get standard tire-pressure monitors, but are otherwise unchanged.
Toyota prices the five-speed manual Liftback from $11,300; the Sedan with an automatic transmission starts at $12,900. The new Liftback Sport with a five-speed manual is priced at $12,975.
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