The 2021 Toyota C-HR comes in LE, XLE and Limited trim levels. The new-for-2021 Nightshade Edition is based on the XLE. Base
LE trim ($22,620) has 17-in steel wheels (17-inch alloy wheels are optional), automatic on/off headlights and high beams, LED running lights, selectable driving modes,
forward collision warning with automatic braking and pedestrian/cyclist detection, lane-keeping assistance, full-speed
adaptive cruise control, Lane Trace Assist, automatic
dual-zone climate control, height-adjustable front seats, 60/40 split/folding back seat, cloth upholstery, self-dimming rearview mirror, 8-in infotainment touchscreen, USB port,
Apple CarPlay/Android Auto smartphone integration, Amazon Alexa compatibility, satellite radio, Wi-Fi, Safety Connect emergency communications, auxiliary audio input, and a 6-speaker sound system.
XLE ($24,655) adds 18-in alloy wheels, blind-spot monitoring with
rear cross-traffic alert, keyless entry/ignition, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel. The
Nightshade Edition ($TBA) has black-finished alloy wheels with black lug nuts, black side mirror housings, black chin spoiler, black door handles, black badge overlays and black fabric upholstery. Paint choices are white, red, or gray with a contrasting black roof or all black.
Limited trim ($27,675) adds adaptive LED front lighting, LED fog lights, rain-sensing wipers, 8-way power-adjustable driver’s seat with lumbar adjustment, heated front seats, and leather upholstery. XLE and Limited trims are also eligible for a contrasting black roof.
The C-HR comes with class-leading safety technology. Besides the usual
stability control, anti-lock brakes and front-side and side-curtain airbags, the C-HR’s standard equipment includes a drivers knee airbag, an under-cushion airbag on the front passenger side (which prevents submarining under a seat belt), forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking and pedestrian/cyclist detection, adaptive radar cruise control, lane-tracing assistance, lane departure warning with active steering assistance, and automatic high beams.
XLE and Limited trims add blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) gave the C-HR a 5-star overall safety rating, along with five stars each for frontal and side-impact protection. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) gave it top crashworthiness and impact prevention scores, but a Poor rating for the headlights on the lower two trims.
2022 Toyota C-HR vs the competition
2021 Hyundai Kona— Thanks to its optional
turbocharged engine and all-wheel drive system, the
Kona is responsive, grippy and fun. It’s also slightly more practical than the C-HR.
2021 Honda HR-V— The
HR-V is the cargo-carrying champ of this class. Not only does it have the most space, but its flipping/folding back seat brings the greatest versatility. Like the C-HR, the HR-V suffers from lethargic acceleration and a dull CVT, but at least all-wheel drive is on the options list.
2021 Subaru Crosstrek— Whereas the C-HR is solely front-wheel-drive, the
Crosstrek comes standard with all-wheel drive. And it has much more ground clearance than the C-HR, plus a more rugged character. The result is a vehicle better suited to those intending to escape from the city.
2021 Kia Soul — If all-wheel drive isn’t a consideration, then the
Soul is worth a look. Like the C-HR, it also has distinctive styling and a generous amount of features. But it’s roomier, less expensive and offers a turbocharged engine.
2021 Nissan Kicks— Like the C-HR, only the Toyota’s extrovert styling and constricted cabin are replaced by frumpy styling and a gigantic interior. The
Kicks is cheaper, though.
Questions You May Ask
Does the 2021 Toyota C-HR offer all-wheel drive? No. The C-HR is driven solely by its front wheels, although it does have traction/stability control and anti-lock brakes that will help on slippery roads. Those seeking a subcompact SUV/crossover with all-wheel drive could check out the Honda HR-V, Mazda CX-3 or Jeep Renegade.
Is the 2021 Toyota C-HR fast? In this segment, not many of the C-HR’s competitors are what we’d consider fast. The C-HR is a bit heavier than most and its 2.0-liter engine sometimes struggles with this heft. For more sprightly acceleration, a turbocharged Kia Soul or Hyundai Kona might be better.
How roomy is the 2021 Toyota C-HR? For its subcompact size, the C-HR is pretty spacious. It can fit tall passengers in the front and back, although the thick rear upper door panels and high-mounted door handle create a substantial visual impediment right where a passenger’s face would be. The cargo area is about mid-pack in terms of volume, but the height of its floor is higher than most. The rear seats fold flat for more room, but they don’t recline if more comfort is desired.
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