Review: Toyota Aygo (2005 – 2014)

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Low road tax and insurance. Averages a claimed 60mpg. Cheap to run and drives decently. 99g/km CO2 from 2012.

Doors feel flimsy. Reports of water leaks. Clutch and waterpump failures common but stronger clutch fitted from 2009. Water leaks into rear.

Toyota Aygo (2005 – 2014): At A Glance

It must be a tough life being a car designer these days. There you are, refining the styling of the spoiler on your next imaginary supercar when along comes Toyota, Peugeot and Citroen with an impossible brief for a new small car.

First there are all the rules and regulations any new car sold in Europe must comply with: ABS, crumple zones, emissions; an almost endless list. Then there are the crash tests it must pass. Then there's fuel economy and insurance group. Then there's the tiny amount of money it must be built for and still make a profit. And, oh yes, it will have to look good and drive well so people will buy it.

At this point the bad designers jack it all in and slope off to become a dive master on Koh Samui. But the good ones relish the challenge. And Toyota, Peugeot and Citroen must have picked some good ones because between them they came up with the Aygo.

Of course it isn't just the Aygo. It's also the Peugeot 107 and the Citroen C1, all sharing the same basic structure, engine and running gear, and built in the same Czech Republic factory, but with different funky looks to set them apart. Under the bonnet is the lightest four-seater car petrol engine in the world, an all aluminium 998cc three-cylinder VVT-i petrol engine that weighs just 67 kilos, yet pumps out 67bhp and 93Nm torque. Average economy is 61.4mpg.

Toyota Aygo 2006 Road Test

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What does a Toyota Aygo (2005 – 2014) cost?

List Price from £9,865
Buy new from £8,617
Contract hire from £110.23 per month

Toyota Aygo (2005 – 2014): What's It Like Inside?

Length 3405–3420 mm
Width 1615 mm
Height 1465 mm
Wheelbase 2340–2850 mm

Full specifications

There are three grades of trim: Aygo, Aygo + and Sport and a choice of manual or 'MMT' (Multi-Mode Manual) electric clutch semi-automatic. Nest year there will also be a 53bhp 1.4 PSA diesel (not the Toyota diesel as used in the Yaris, MINI and Corolla). There's a choice of two side doors or four, and four doesn't put up cost or weight much because the rear windows simply pop open rather then winding up and down.

At first it all feels a bit flimsy because, to keep weight down Toyota uses thin sheet metal in the tactile bits that don't provide structural strength, like the door skins and the bonnet. But 50% of the bodyshell is high tensile steel and most of it is galvanized which allows a 12 year no perforation warranty at a time when other manufacturers are cutting back their corrosion warranties. The rear seatbacks fold down and that's it, as in the FIAT Panda and base model Citroen C2. The 'parcel shelf' just pop-fits onto a couple of lugs and, to save unnecessary expense, is lifted by just one cord instead of the usual two. The hatchback is simply a big rear window so there is a high sill. And the luggage compartment itself is tiny: just 139 litres, but enough for the average supermarket trip. At least the bags won't fall over.

The steering wheel adjusts up and down and takes the instrument pod with it so nothing ever gets obscured, though some drivers may find the minute mileage display hard to read. All the controls are where you'd expect them to be without having to check the handbook and work well. All trim levels come with a radio/CD player with MP3 socket, while the Sport gets a cute rev counter on a separate pod sprouting out of the main instrument cluster. The seats are okay, for 80 miles at least, which was the length of the test route. There are lots of places to store small items so they won't roll about. The dash top has a high-tech carbon fibre look. And the single pantograph wiper is organised to clear the drivers side properly.

Child seats that fit a Toyota Aygo (2005 – 2014)

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What's the Toyota Aygo (2005 – 2014) like to drive?

Get going and the variable assistance electric power steering is very light, yet still transmits reasonable 'feel'. The gearshift seems a bit sloppy at first, but I never mis-shifted so it's precise enough. Handling is cheeky and cheerful, like a Panda's. No nasty surprises there, with more grip as you press on rather than less. Ride quality is very good on the standard 155/65 R14 tyres.

The engine isn't exactly a fire-breather but with maximum torque at 3,600 rpm and very sensible gear ratios you can overtake safely. 2nd is good for more than 50 and 3rd for more than 70. From 3rd you can pop it straight into 5th in normal driving. In fact it changes very neatly from 3rd to 5th, almost as if it was designed to. On the motorway it cruises happily at far greater speeds than are currently allowed, with minimal wind, engine and tyre noise, and doesn't get blown about.

A week later I got to drive it on famous Millbrook proving ground hill route, which shows up the finer points or weaknesses of any car's handling better than any other track in the world. To the Aygo's immense credit, it really shone here with no nasty traits at all. So there are definitley going to be a lot of people driving Aygos with smiles on their faces.

You can have any colour you like as long as it's solid Chilli red, or, on the Aygo + and Sport, optional extra-cost Ice Blue or Carbon Quartz black metallic.

Other options include air conditioning, a Travel Pack, which is a Samsonite glovebox bag with CD pocket, a trolley bag and a rucksack. And a Navigation Pack consisting of a Tom Tom Go touch screen portable satnav system covered by 3 years of warranty and mapping updates.

Toyota asks buyers to think total running costs rather than low list prices, which is fair enough. The Yaris has shown how well small Toyotas can hold their value. And the fact that Citroen and Peugeot will offer their own slightly different versions adds to the attraction and makes the cars easier to service.

The MMT is an electronically controlled electric clutch manual posing as an automatic. The shift pattern is very simple. You just move it across the gate for standard auto. Then to change manually push forward for downchanges and back for upchanges.

Left in auto the change from 1st to 2nd comes with a lurch until you learn to lift the accelerator to help it. Other changes are generally smoother. It works best changing manually. I found myself naturally leaving it in Drive when I wanted to be lazy and changing manually when I needed to get a move on. Though not as smooth as a full automatic or Honda's excellent CVT it is at least acceptable for people who need an automatic but don't want to go to the expense of one. It's also more economical on fuel than a full automatic.

Engine MPG 0-62 CO2
1.0 VVT-i 61–66 mpg 14.2 s 99–109 g/km
1.0 VVT-i MultiMode 61–63 mpg 14.9 s 104–107 g/km
1.4 D-4D 69 mpg 16.8 s 109 g/km

Real MPG average for a Toyota Aygo (2005 – 2014)

Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.

Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.

Average performance


Real MPG

41–79 mpg

MPGs submitted


Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.

What have we been asked about the Toyota Aygo (2005 – 2014)?

Every day we're asked hundreds of questions from car buyers and owners through Ask Honest John. Our team of experts, including the nation's favourite motoring agony uncle - Honest John himself - answer queries and conudrums ranging from what car to buy to how to care for it as an owner. If you could do with a spot of friendly advice before buying you're next car, get in touch and we'll do what we can to help.

Ask HJ

Which city car has the best automatic gearbox?

I need to upgrade my wife's car from her 2008 Toyota Aygo. It's been great but she's never liked the semi-automatic style gearbox. Is there a decent, automatic, city car? Many thanks in advance.
Yes - a Kia Picanto or Hyundai i10 would be a good choice. They're both very good little cars with affordable running costs and, for the time being, a torque-converter automatic gearbox.
Answered by Andrew Brady
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