Toyota C-HR Plug-in Hybrid 220: A concept car with a dual DNA

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With sales of almost 900,000 in Europe since its 2017 introduction, the original Toyota C-HR was a breakthrough model for Toyota, bringing the brand to a style-conscious audience thanks to its unconventional design inside and out, fun to drive character and superior quality.

The new Toyota C-HR takes this legacy further and combines stand-out styling, an engaging drive and class-leading efficiency, with a focus on exceeding European customer expectations of premium quality and sustainability.

The iconic coupe silhouette pioneered by its predecessor is further emphasised for the new Toyota C-HR by a wider, more confident stance, enhanced by imposing 20-inch wheels on the Plug-in Hybrid 220, and a heightened level of sophisticated design execution.

A holistic and personalised user experience puts the customer at the heart of the vehicle and takes the Toyota C-HR’s renowned sensory quality to greater heights thanks to a comprehensive upgrade of materials combined with premium details and features.

The new Toyota C-HR has been developed specifically for the expectations of European customers through its local design, engineering and production, exploiting innovative developments, including real-time data from drivers across the continent.

All versions of the new Toyota C-HR, including the Plug-in Hybrid 220, benefit from Toyota’s latest, fifth-generation hybrid technology and a comprehensive upgrade to the vehicle dynamics, achieving driving excitement and a confident, quiet ride.

In Plug-in Hybrid 220 specification, the new Toyota C-HR delivers the effortless, smooth driving of a true electric vehicle (EV), with a range of up to 66 km (WLTP combined) which allows for all-electric daily driving, based on the typical needs of European customers.

Expressing a dual DNA, the Toyota C-HR Plug-in Hybrid 220 switches automatically to hybrid mode when the battery is depleted, giving drivers the reassurance and flexibility of Toyota’s class-leading hybrid technology, which ensures continuous efficiency throughout every journey.

Alongside the Toyota C-HR Plug-in Hybrid 220 are three hybrid electric powertrains, emphasising Toyota’s inclusive multi-technology path to carbon neutrality. Toyota believes customers need a variety of options for affordable and practical vehicles to accelerate the pace of CO2 reduction today and ensure a successful transition to zero emission mobility in the future.

The ultra-efficient Hybrid 140 has a 1.8 litre engine and 140 DIN hp while, for customers wanting an even more exciting driving experience, the Hybrid 200 combines power and efficiency from a 2.0-litre engine with 197 DIN hp and 190Nm torque.  A Hybrid 200 AWD-i option adds true all-wheel-drive confidence and safety. As well as more power and torque, it provides better traction and stability, more precise cornering, and greater confidence when driving over a range of road conditions.

Beyond its class-leading efficiency on the road, the new Toyota C-HR further reduces its environmental impact through the introduction of new recycled and animal-free materials, as well as advanced technologies to reduce vehicle weight and cut CO2 emissions during production.

AN AGILE AND RESPONSIVE PHEV

Toyota’s best-in-class PHEV powertrain combines with optimised handling, improved ride comfort and better braking for a more powerful, engaging, and fun driving experience with the Toyota C-HR Plug-in Hybrid 220.

The latest, fifth generation Toyota hybrid technology is at the heart of all new Toyota C-HR variants, achieving a class-leading balance of increased power and low emissions.

The Plug-in Hybrid 220 offers a best-in-class experience thanks to its dual DNA. It has the lively performance and smooth ride of a true EV for everyday journeys, with an all-electric range of up to 66km (WLTP combined) which exceeds the average daily driving range of a typical European customer.

When the battery is depleted during a longer journey, the vehicle automatically switches to hybrid mode, engaging Toyota’s class-leading hybrid technology to ensure an efficient trip no matter how far the journey goes.

Its PHEV powertrain consists of a 163 DIN HP (120 kW) electric motor on the front axle, with energy stored in a high-output 13.6 kWh Li-ion battery, alongside a 2.0 litre engine with 152 DIN HP (112 kW). That delivers a total system power of 223 DIN HP (164 kW) which helps the Plug-in Hybrid 220 accelerate from a standstill to 100km/h in 7.4 seconds.

Performance is matched by efficiency, with fuel consumption at 0.9 l/100 km and ultra-low WLTP combined cycle CO2 emissions of 19 g/km. A clutch-less dual motor system eliminates friction and wear, enabling the Plug-in Hybrid 220 to use substantially less fuel when running in hybrid mode compared to most competitor PHEVs.

In common with all four Toyota C-HR powertrain options, the Plug-in Hybrid 220 has been enhanced to suit European tastes, using real-time data from drivers across the continent. Throttle response is optimised for a more direct and consistent acceleration feel, via recalibration of pedal input sensitivity to deliver easy control and rapid responsive.

The new Toyota C-HR builds on the engaging handling of the original, and for the PHEV version there is no compromise on driving dynamics thanks in part to updated Toyota New Generation Architecture (TNGA) which delivers higher torsional rigidity whilst also reducing vehicle mass.

For the first time on a Toyota vehicle worldwide, the Plug-in Hybrid 220 features ZF frequency sensitive control (FSC) technology to enhance handling and ride comfort. The hydro-mechanical system increases damping force at low frequencies to deliver superior body control, in roll and pitch, as well as maintaining better control during cornering. At high frequency, reduced damping contributes to improved ride comfort.

Enhancements have also been made to braking performance and the Plug-in Hybrid 220, along with the Hybrid 200 AWD-i, benefits from 17-inch calliper and discs, plus the latest vehicle stability control systems. Hybrid 140 and Hybrid 200 variants feature new 16-inch twin piston brake calliper and discs with built-in electric parking brake. All versions have a redesigned brake pedal to enhance control and achieve a more natural braking feel.

Class-leading acoustic comfort is achieved thanks to a combination of measures. Engine speeds during highway driving have been reduced by up to 500 rpm, while vibration damping and noise insulation contribute to a peaceful ride. A drag co-efficient of 0.318 is achieved via a detailed aerodynamic development which reduced the frontal area and refined the body shape, including the underbody, to optimise air flow.

PHEV TECHNOLOGY AND CONTROL SETTINGS

The Toyota C-HR Plug-in Hybrid 220 is the result of a dedicated development to make the most of the unique opportunities and requirements of a PHEV.

To further enhance the already-impressive PHEV efficiency, the vehicle uses a pump to draw heat from air outside, as well as making use of engine heat, to support the air conditioning system in winter and minimise battery use, therefore maximising EV range.

Use of components from the latest Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA) modular platform allows the PHEV battery to be fitted under the floor outside the cabin, lowering the centre of gravity. This contributes to the Toyota C-HR Plug-in Hybrid 220’s agile handling, as well as removing any compromise on cabin or luggage space.

To further enhance cabin acoustics and ride comfort, the Plug-in Hybrid 220 features an additional damper at the front while further TNGA components are added to the rear suspension for greater rigidity and improved handling.

The Predictive Efficient Drive system, with new geo-fencing function, helps the driver stay one step ahead of what the journey has in store. The system combines analysis of road and traffic conditions with ongoing learning of a user’s regular routes and driving style to automatically optimise the use of full-electric mode, maximising efficiency.

The new geo-fencing function further optimises battery usage across the entire trip by analysing the planned route and automatically switching between EV and HV modes while driving outside of a low emission zone, in order to maximise EV drive when entering a low emission zone.

Regeneration Boost offers a ‘one pedal’-like experience and provides up to 80% of braking during driving, depending on which of the three settings – gentle, medium or strong – are selected, making for easier driving in traffic.

Enhanced confidence and control come courtesy of Adaptive Hill Control Logic, which applies motor assist when traveling downhill to reduce the need for a driver to press the brake pedal, making driving easier. It also modifies acceleration on undulating routes based on the incline, for more intuitive acceleration.

Four powertrain operation modes are available: EV mode, auto EV/HV mode, HV mode, and charging mode.

  • Under EV mode, which is engaged by default when starting the vehicle, the system will drive in pure EV mode to the limit of its EV range, regardless of acceleration demand.
  • The driver can also select Auto EV/HV mode, whereby the vehicle will engage the engine when extra power is required and return to EV afterwards.
  • The HV mode, whereby the battery state of charge is maintained, will be automatically selected when the battery reaches a low state of charge. It can also be manually selected by the driver.
  • Finally, a battery charging mode can be used when the driver wishes to recharge the EV battery whilst driving, using power generated by the engine.

In addition to the pre-set Normal, Eco and Sport modes familiar on most Hybrid and Plug-in Hybrid vehicles, the driving experience on the new Toyota C-HR can be customised via the Drive Mode Select option on the centre console. Depending on a driver’s preference, a customised combination of powertrain, steering and air conditioning settings can be saved for instant access at any time.

A 6.6 kW onboard charger allows the Toyota C-HR Plug-in Hybrid 220 to recharge its battery from zero to 100% in under two-and-a-half hours. Charging using domestic electrical connections is also possible via the mode 2 charging cable supplied as standard.

Using the MyToyota app, charging can be started and stopped remotely when the vehicle is plugged in, with the app showing live progress and EV range. For further convenience, a charging schedule can be created, allowing the battery to be recharged at the most appropriate moment, for example during the night when electricity prices are typically at their lowest.

MyToyota also gives access to the Toyota Charging Network, one of the largest pan-European EV charging networks. Users can search for charging stations and see details of real-time availability, charging speed and plug types. An optional subscription service allows users to use and pay for charging services using the app.

SENSUAL EXTERIOR STYLE

The new Toyota C-HR is designed to stand out through its distinctive styling, which enhances the iconic coupe silhouette with dynamic diamond-cut character lines for a striking bold look.

At the front, the 3D architecture is reinterpreted to include spectacular full LED headlamps integrated alongside the turn signals within an eye-catching arrow-shaped design, while sharp character lines express a new level of sophisticated design execution. As standard, and for the first time in the market, the model’s name is directly integrated into the full LED rear lamp and illuminated during a dynamic welcome and goodbye sequence.

That bold look is further emphasised by the unique new ‘bi-tone+’ colouring, whereby the contrast black of the roof extends all the way to the rear of the car and into the car’s rear three-quarter section to create a striking, sleek appearance. The ‘bi-tone+’ colouring is available on Premiere and GR SPORT Editions Plug-in Hybrid 220.

True to the vision of a ‘concept car for the road’, the new Toyota C-HR brings premium features such as flush door handles, a first for Toyota. An incredible attention to detail is emphasised by the production innovation which allows the edge of the rear door to directly meet the rear lamp assembly, without any frame, for a sharper, cutting-edge exterior.

The Plug-in Hybrid 220, as well as other higher-grade models, features unique panoramic glass roof for a lighter, more spacious feeling, with 3 cm additional headroom at the rear of the cabin. Using innovative coatings, it retains heat inside the cabin on cooler days, and prevents overheating in sunny weather, reducing the need for air conditioning. That combines with a 5 kg weight saving achieved by eliminating the need for a conventional sunshade, which enhances efficiency.

A 35 mm wider stance is further complemented by new alloy wheels – a striking 20 inches on the Plug-in Hybrid 220 – and a 25 mm shorter front overhang as part of a condensed package that looks poised and dynamic from every angle.

AN EMOTIONAL USER EXPERIENCE

Inside the new Toyota C-HR, sensory quality has been taken to new heights by a comprehensive upgrade of materials to combine new features with an exceptional and emotional user experience.

Toyota’s first 64-colour ambient lighting system promotes serenity among occupants. During the day, the direct and indirect lighting changes every hour, from bright morning shades to relaxed evening hues, while one of 14 programmed themes can be chosen to reflect the mood of each journey. Lighting is also synchronised with the air conditioning system, using warmer colours when the cabin is heating, or cooler ones when the temperature is reducing. Safety is also enhanced via the ambient lighting, which is used to visually highlight warnings issued by the Safe Exit Assist and Proactive Driving Assist systems.

A driver-focused zone ensures all control elements and information are intelligently located to keep hands on the wheel and eyes on the road. The Plug-in Hybrid 220 features a head-up display and, like most Toyota C-HR models, an all-new, 12.3-inch fully digital combimeter for instrumentation which prioritises clear visibility of critical information, such as speed and driver assistance settings, and is optimised for one-touch operations. The display can be personalised through four themes – Casual, Smart, Tough or Sporty – and three customisable dial lay-outs.

Toyota Smart Connect offers a more connected multimedia experience, with on-board voice agent and wireless smartphone connection via Apple CarPlay or Android Auto. A 12.3-inch touchscreen is integrated seamlessly on the Plug-in Hybrid 220 and selected other grades, alongside a Toyota first: a fade-effect metal JBL tweeter with custom-made perforations for superior sound quality, and engraved JBL logo.

A wing concept for the dash consists of a slim horizontal instrument panel perfectly integrated with the door panels and centre console to wrap the occupants and generate a warm, welcoming space. It includes practical features such as an additional, convenient storage tray integrated above the glove box and a centre console tray large enough to hold two mobile phones.

As well as enhanced ambiance, the new Toyota C-HR cabin also boasts improved air quality thanks to nanoeX™ technology which diffuses microscopic water droplets to cleanse the air, remove allergens, reduce odours, and promote more hydrated skin.

Practicality is enhanced via the MyToyota app, which incorporates several helpful functions, such as locking/unlocking the doors, and activating the air conditioning to heat or cool the car before starting a journey.

More comfortable parking is available via a Panoramic View Monitor, and for even more convenience, a unique-in-class semi-autonomous Advanced Parking system can manoeuvre into a space hands-free or via smartphone outside of the vehicle.

Compared to the previous Toyota C-HR, the new generation also benefit from increased trunk capacity.

ENVIRONMENTAL LEADERSHIP

The new Toyota C-HR is an environmental leader within Toyota’s model range, setting new standards for sustainability, emissions reduction, and the use of recycled materials.

Compared to its predecessor, the new generation uses double the quantity of recycled plastic, which is now found in more than 100 different parts. That includes 19 parts which consist of at least 80% recycled material.

As well as interior plastic parts and floormats made from recycled content, a new synthetic seat covering is made from recycled plastic bottles, a first for Toyota. Extensive analysis and testing have ensured that the appearance, feel and durability of the recycled materials on the new Toyota C-HR is the same or better than virgin alternatives.

CO2 emissions during production are further reduced by a new painting process for bumper parts, which utilises water-based paint for lower environmental impact within an automated process which also uses less material overall.

Paint has been eliminated entirely in seven parts, up from three on the previous generation, by an expanded use of in-mould colour technology, whereby colour is applied directly during the injection process, achieving a glossy finish, and cutting CO2 emissions by 50% compared to painting.

By moving away from leather to a synthetic, animal-free steering wheel cover, the CO2 impact of that part has been reduced. This new material offers the same or better look and feel as genuine leather and is included as standard on all grades.

Local production of the PHEV battery in Europe, means the ultra-efficient Plug-in Hybrid 220’s carbon footprint is further reduced, thanks to shorter transportation distances.

Through innovative design and technology, further measures have been taken to reduce the weight of specific parts, thereby enhancing fuel efficiency and reducing environmental impact.

In a European first, the new Toyota C-HR uses high-strength 2000 MPa steel in its B-pillars, maintaining a very high torsional rigidity whilst reducing component weight by 3.5 kg and eliminating spot welding. This accounts for a 10% CO2 reduction during the production process.

TOYOTA T-MATE SAFETY AND DRIVER ASSISTANCE

All versions of the new Toyota C-HR benefit from Toyota T-Mate, which includes the third generation Toyota Safety Sense range of active safety and driver assistance features, as standard for comprehensive safety systems and driver assistance.

Toyota T-Mate is the collective name for the wide-ranging systems that help safeguard against accidents, provide protection in the event of an impact and assist the driver to make manoeuvres, whether parking or driving in traffic. On the new Toyota C-HR, the latest generation of Toyota Safety Sense includes preventive safety systems with greater functionality and more comprehensive monitoring of the car’s surroundings.

The latest Pre-Collision System and Proactive Driving Assist constantly monitor the road for hazards and can warn the driver or automatically suppress acceleration and provide braking control if an imminent risk is detected. This guards against a range of risk factors, such as the presence of a slower or stationary vehicle in the lane ahead, and pedestrians or cyclists crossing the road, even when doing so on a road the vehicle is turning into.

Lane Trace Assist keeps the new Toyota C-HR safely on its intended path, guided by the road markings, the road margin or the vehicle ahead, further enhancing safety by reducing the driving burden on long highway journeys. The system works with the Full-Range Adaptive Cruise Control to adjust speed through a highway bend whilst monitoring the use of the steering wheel and pedals. If they are not used for a specific amount of time, it can initiate the Emergency Driving Stop System.

Enhanced Full Range Adaptive Cruise Control includes new Overtake Prevention Support to automatically prevent unintentional highway overtaking on the wrong side of another vehicle and Turn Signal Linked Control to help the driver join traffic at a safe speed and distance from other vehicles.

On main roads and highways, the Road Sign Assist gives a visual reminder of important information such as warning signs and the speed limit. The latest version is enhanced with a one-touch adjustment of the speed limiter to match information from the road signs.

The new Toyota C-HR also benefits from additional safety systems as standard, such as the Rear Seat Reminder System, which alerts the driver if a child or pet is left on the back seat, and Safe Exit Assist which warns if vehicles or cyclists are approaching from behind when a door is opening.

An extended package is optionally available on the new Toyota C-HR. This includes enhanced Lane Change Assist and Front Cross Traffic Alert, designed to warn the driver of vehicles approaching from the left or right at intersections. A Driver Monitor Camera provides enhanced monitoring of a driver’s status and is linked to the Emergency Driving Stop System, while the Adaptive High-beam System adjusts front light levels to minimise glare for oncoming traffic.

For complete customer convenience, seamless software revisions and upgrades over-the-air is provided via the car’s data communications module.