Today at the Frankfurt auto show, Toyota revealed the latest version of its CH-R concept, a compact hybrid crossover the company says will become a production model in the not-too-distant future.
Unlike the iteration shown in Paris in 2014, this one is a five-door, and builds on the automaker’s intent to “explore new directions for crossovers in an increasingly homogeneous marketplace,” which makes it sound like Toyota’s a bit jealous of all the attention Nissan’s frog-eyed Juke is getting. Not to mention Nissan’s Gripz concept, which is also being shown in Frankfurt.
Indeed, the CH-R indicates a plan to move into the subcompact crossover market (in which the Juke is a stylistic standout), along with the more ‘homogeneous’ Honda HR-V and Mazda CX-3 (next to which the name CH-R is a perfect fit, unfortunately), hence the rear doors (for more practicality) and toned-down styling. Toyota admits the new look is “a step toward commercialization,” a claim made more believable by the car’s use of the company’s new TNGA (Toyota New Global Architecture) platform, which also underpins the new Prius.
Whether you like the look of this, get used to it: Toyota confirmed it will show a production model based on the CH-R in Spring 2016, at the Geneva auto show.