The Honda BR-V is currently in a league of its own. By simply jacking up the suspension, adding some trendy rugged body cladding, and market it as an SUV rather than an MPV, even if it’s not meant to go off-road, nor have the option of all wheel drive, it managed to sell by the truckloads. It ate the sales of not just Honda’s own Mobilio, but even the Toyota Avanza small MPV, which has now become uncool in this crazy world thirsty for literally any kind of car that looks like an SUV.
The Toyota Rush was always a small SUV, one of the first to create the subcompact SUV category, but now, it has evolved completely into a small MPV with SUV stuff that’s surely going to make people flock towards Toyota showrooms. Dimensionally, the Rush is 4,435 mm long and 1,695 mm wide, which is 18 mm shorter and 40 mm narrower than the BR-V. However, it has a longer wheelbase at 2,685 mm, which is 23 mm longer than the BR-V’s. The advantage of the Rush here is its ground clearance, which is at 220 mm vs. 201 mm in the BR-V.
The exterior shares nothing with the previous generation Rush. Up front, we see a grille that looks similar to the Fortuner’s and strangely, even the previous generation Honda CR-V. In this top trim G variant with TRD Sportivo accessories, we see LED headlights with LED guide lights, LED rear lights, extra cladding trim including those door mouldings, front and rear skid plates, chunky foglamp housings, and 17-inch alloy wheels. First impressions are that, the design looks good. It doesn’t suffer from having such small wheels with respect to the car’s body, avoiding that budget look often associated with entry-level MPVs due to their small wheels.
The inside of the Rush looks interesting enough. The TRD Sportivo variant does with a dashboard design with a soft touch stitched panel in the lower dashboard to keep things interesting and feel more premium. Facing the driver are a high contrast LED-lit gauges, and a touch screen infotainment system. This Indonesian market model has a single-zone automatic climate control, passive entry with push button start, USB ports in all three rows, and a seat belt warning light, even for the rear passengers.
Powering the Toyota Rush is a 1.5 liter Dual VVT-i DOHC inline-4 petrol engine that produces 104 hp @ 6,000 rpm and 136 Nm of torque @ 4,200 rpm. Power is sent (interestingly) through the rear wheels via a 5-speed manual or a 4-speed automatic, which are technologies expected in this class of cars. It uses a heavily modified platform of the current Toyota Avanza.
Toyota has equipped the Rush with a surprising amount of safety kit that we at Go Flat Out sincerely hope Toyota Motor Philippines does not remove when they decide to bring the Rush to the Philippines. All variants of the Toyota Rush is safely equipped with things like Vehicle Stability Control, ABS with EBD, Hill Start Assist, and six airbags.