Twenty-five years ago Toyota built its first car in Britain, launching a manufacturing enterprise that has benefited from billions of pounds of investment and delivered more than four million vehicles to customers in the UK, Europe and beyond. To celebrate this landmark anniversary, Toyota has produced a special limited edition version of the Auris Hybrid, a model proudly built at its Burnaston factory and powered by an engine made at its plant in Deeside, North Wales.
The new Auris Hybrid GB25 is very different from the original Carina E model that came off Toyota Manufacturing UK’s (TMUK) production line back in 1992, the first Toyota passenger car to be built in Europe. Throughout the past quarter of a century Toyota has kept TMUK at the forefront of modern car making, investing more than £2.5 billion to support new vehicle and production technologies, skills training and pioneering ways of working that are kinder to the environment and protect natural resources.
TMUK was Toyota’s first European manufacturing centre to produce hybrid vehicles – the first generation Auris Hybrid – and engines. And earlier this year, £240 million was committed to preparing the Burnaston factory for future vehicle production using the Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA), an undertaking that has also attracted UK Government funding to support associated training, R&D and environmental activities.
The Derbyshire based facility enjoys global status as a Toyota eco-plant, promoting excellence and best practice in environmental matters, from energy-efficient manufacturing to the on-site harnessing of sustainable energy and the promotion of biodiversity. Burnaston and Deeside both source power from on-site solar arrays and have eliminated waste sent to landfill. The company currently employs more than 3,000 people across its two plants and supports many more jobs within its UK supplier network.
The special edition Auris Hybrid GB25 represents the best of Toyota’s UK manufacturing, a stylish and spacious compact hatchback offering the smooth, quiet and efficient performance of the latest-generation petrol-electric hybrid powertrain. It sports a distinctive bi-tone exterior paint finish, combining a contrasting black roof, front grille and door mirror casings with a choice of Tokyo Red, Pearl White or Aspen Grey bodywork. Its special status is marked out a by a “25 years building in Britain” badge, incorporating the Union flag. The cabin is distinguished by smart black leather upholstery with a quilted finish for the backrest and cushion and contrast silver stitching – also featured on the armrests and dashboard trim.
Equipment features include 17-inch alloys with a smart silver and machined contrast finish, rear privacy glass, full colour multi-information display automatic air conditioning, power windows, push-button start and leather steering and shift lever trim.
The Toyota Touch 2 multimedia system provides perfect ease of use with a seven-inch touchscreen, co-ordinating functions including the six-speaker audio system with DAB, Bluetooth for hands-free phone operation and music streaming and rear-view camera. The Toyota Safety Sense package provides active systems that can help prevent an accident happening, or lessen the consequence if an impact does occur; its features include a Pre-Crash Safety system with autonomous emergency braking, Automatic High Beam for the headlights, Road Sign Assist and Lane Departure Warning.
The efficiency of the 1.8-litre petrol-electric full hybrid powertrain helps keep ownership costs down, as well as reducing the environmental impact of day-to-day driving through low CO2 and NOx emissions. Official combined cycle figures are 72.4mpg fuel consumption and 91g/km of CO2.
The Auris Hybrid GB25 is on sale from 1 July, price £24,045. In common with all Toyotas, it comes with a five-year/100,000-mile new vehicle warranty as standard.