Toyota planning 1.5-litre Etios Liva hot-hatchback

Toyota is planning another limited edition of the Liva, close on the heels of the Liva Sportivo launch a few days back. It may launch a more powerful Liva with the Etios sedan’s 1.5 litre petrol engine in a bid to target younger buyers looking for a sporty hatchback.

The Toyota Etios Liva 1.5 will also tie in with the Etios Motor Racing series that Toyota has launched, which races race-specification Etios and Livas on tracks around India to promote the brand. A 1.5-litre Liva will put out 90 bhp of power and 153 Nm of torque, making it quite a peppy car to drive. It will share all its mechanicals with the larger Etios sedan, but being a hatchback, it will be significantly lighter and therefore a lot quicker.

Toyota planning 1.5-litre Etios Liva hot-hatchback

The Etios Liva 1.5 may also get some of the body kit that the Limited Edition Sportivo has such as decals, side skirts, sporty front and rear bumper, alloy wheels and better fabric upholstery. The car won’t get any other mechanical or structural changes. At present the Liva is powered by a 1.2 litre petrol engine that puts out 79 bhp of power, while the diesel has a 1.4 litre engine that puts out 68 bhp of power.

Other carmakers that sell hot hatches in India, include the Volkswagen Polo 1.6, which uses the Vento’s petrol engine and the Skoda Fabia 1.6, which also uses the same engine. Both the cars put out 104 bhp of power. Cars that would directly compete with the Liva 1.5 will include the Fiat Punto Sport 90 HP, which uses at 90 bhp variant of Fiat’s 1.3 multijet diesel engine and the Tata Vista GZX, which also comes with a 90 bhp petrol engine.

However, with current excise norms, cars that have petrol engine’s of over 1.2 litre are not eligible for small car excise duty sops and hence will have to be priced significantly higher. Expect the Etios Liva 1.5 to cost about Rs. 6.3 lakh ex-showroom, about the same as the Tata Vista GZX. The car is expected to sell in limited numbers only.

Do you think a 90 bhp variant of the Liva will appeal more to buyers? Share your thoughts.

(Source: Autocar India)

[poll id=”42″]