Toyota Innova Hycross review, road test

    To know if the Hycross carries forward the legacy of the Innova moniker, we put it through our comprehensive road test.

    Published on Jun 20, 2023 08:00:00 AM


    Toyota Innova Hycross

    Being a monocoque, what you’ll immediately notice is a more agreeable cabin height due to a lower floor than the Crysta, so ingress and egress is a breeze. Its interiors are a far cry from the rather spartan cabin of the Crysta. The horizontally oriented touchscreen as well as the air vents accentuate the width of the dashboard. And the hybrid’s brown and black theme with the matte silver highlights, and some padded bits with contrasting double stitching significantly lifts its appeal. A welcome addition are physical buttons for climate control, for key functions of the touchscreen, as well as for other functions like drive modes and electric parking brake. Uniquely, the gear console is an extension of the dashboard, so it sits below the HVAC controls, and the lever operates with a rather solid, satisfying click. Fit-finish and quality of some plastics lower down don’t befit a car of this price.

    Design, practicality are much better than Crysta's, but petrol's black cabin, missing features scream 'base variant'.

    The petrol’s cabin is a sea of black with rudimentary hard plastics and a plethora of dummy buttons (missing features), which don’t make an impression as strong as the hybrid. Furthermore, the black colour amplifies all the fit-finish imperfections on the inside. The rotary manual air conditioner controls look like they've been lifted off a budget car from the 90s.

    Clockwise from top left: Hybrid's brown-black colour scheme, padded bits make interior more appealing; Large, coloured instrument cluster is informative; ADAS works well and isn't intrusive.

    Then there are the seats, which are large and very comfortable. The hybrid’s front seats also get a ventilation function, and the driver’s seat is electrically operable with two memory functions. Toyota has placed the hybrid’s battery beneath the front seats, and there’s even a vent on the passenger side to cool it. Thankfully, this placement doesn’t eat into the footroom and comfort of middle row passengers. In fact, the extended wheelbase ensures that knee, leg and foot room for middle passengers is plenty.

    The 10.1-inch touchscreen is very basic in terms of resolution and interface. 

    If you opt for captain’s chairs, you get a set of part-electric chairs with ottomans, extensions on which you can rest your legs when you really want to stretch out, thus taking comfort to the next level. In order to use it effectively, you’ll have to move the front passenger seat forward, therefore, it isn’t of much use behind the driver. With the middle slid fully behind and the front passenger seat all the way forward, you’re in for a business class-like experience, with the ottoman supporting your legs, and the backrest in a reclined (electrically operable) position. The passenger behind the driver’s seat, however, will have limited space to stretch.

    Although a welcome addition, the display quality of the 360-degree camera is quite poor. 

    For the comfort and convenience of rear passengers, there are window shades, a dedicated climate control unit, and a nifty foldable tray with cup holders between the captain’s chairs. The Hycross also features a panoramic sunroof that floods the cabin with light and accentuates the sense of space. AC vents move to the sides of the roof, but these did feel rather flimsy to operate.

    Broad, high-set front seats offer good visibility all around.

    The petrol version we tested was an 8-seater with a bench in the middle row, which can easily seat three adults abreast, thanks to the sheer width of the cabin. The long fore-aft travel of the middle row bench, as well as a recline function for the backrest, make it very comfortable, especially for the chauffeur-driven folk. The armrest feels a bit flimsy as it falls to the seat base, like in the Honda City, and window shades for the rear doors should have been included to block sunlight.

    Hugely spacious, with ample seat support; wide enough for three adults.

    Getting to the third row is pretty easy too, as the middle row slides all the way in front, liberating a large opening to trundle through. Once sat, you’ll appreciate the space and comfort of its third row. It feels quite bright and airy, so even adults will be comfortable on long drives without feeling worse for wear.

    The backrest reclines in a 50:50 ratio, and Toyota has even offered three individual headrests, as well as three-point seat belts, for the occupants. At certain backrest angles, however, taller occupants will brush their heads against the ledge of the roof, so six-footers could find headroom in short supply.

    Third row seat can fit three; two adults can sit very comfortably.

    With all seats in place, the boot has enough space for a couple of soft bags, but folding the third row flat liberates cavernous cargo space. What makes loading heavy luggage very convenient is the massive boot opening, low floor height and a flat loading lip. The hybrid’s electrically operable tailgate adds to the convenience.

    What needs a special mention is the effectiveness of the air conditioner, which chills the cabin very quickly, even when temperatures outside are nudging 40 degrees centigrade.

    Even with all seats in place, there's still some sapce for medium-sized bags. 

    Copyright (c) Autocar India. All rights reserved.

    Naman Jain - 393 days ago

    Strange to see that ground clearance figure not mentioned or NA while google shows all. Any valid reason not to mention here as its hard to understand when one has the vehicle on hand / under review why its difficult to measure/estimate this (laden/unladen)?

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