Crossover & Midsize

Much-Needed Safety Features Are Coming to the 2021 Toyota C-HR

If you need a reliable and well-constructed vehicle, you should consider a Toyota. Many of its vehicles will receive updates for 2021, including the Toyota C-HR SUV. According to MotorTrend, it will have a few new paint options and some essential safety features.

The Toyota C-HR recently made its debut during the 2018 model year, but it keeps getting useful upgrades. In 2019, built-in navigation was offered as an upgrade and Apple CarPlay became standard, followed by Android Auto in 2020. How will these latest features affect the 2021 Toyota C-HR’s performance and reputation?

Safety upgrades

The previous year’s SUV was outfitted with the Toyota Safety Sense-P suite. This includes a pre-collision warning system, automatic high-beams, lane-keeping assistance, and adaptive cruise control. On higher trims, this safety suite includes rear cross-traffic alert, adaptive headlights, and blind-spot monitors.

For 2021, the Toyota C-HR will be equipped with the upgraded Toyota Safety Sense 2.0 system. Lane centering is now a part of the lane assistance technology, while the forward-collision warning system gets pedestrian detection. It also comes with traffic sign recognition as a new upgrade. Just like last year, all these features will likely be included on the base trim.

Exterior options

Toyota also said that the Toyota C-HR will have more paint options for the 2021 model year. The car is currently available in 12 different colors, including special two-tones R-Code hues. The most exciting new color for 2021 is the Nightshade Edition C-HR.

As the name suggests, most of its exterior elements will be covered in glossy black paint. This includes the door handles, front spoiler, roof, wheels, and its trademark Toyota badge. The interior will be all black as well with gunmetal trim. While it doesn’t come with any powertrain upgrades, it still cuts a striking and intimidating shadow.

What does the 2020 Toyota C-HR have to offer?

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The Toyota C-HR is a subcompact SUV that has seating for five passengers. All the seats are supportive, but things can get claustrophobic in the back row due to the small windows. The interior quality looks good at first, but Consumer Reports found some flimsy materials upon closer inspection. Cargo capacity is also very low compared to other cars in the segment.

However, testers appreciated the high position of the infotainment touchscreen. It’s very easy to use and comes equipped with many features on the base trim. There are also physical controls for the audio and climate settings. 

The Toyota C-HR is only available with one engine, a 2.0-liter four-cylinder capable of 144 hp and 139 lb-ft of torque. It’s paired with a CVT and four-wheel drive, with no option to upgrade to all-wheel drive.

Around town, critics found that the Toyota C-HR has plenty of strength for city driving. It feels almost sporty around tight turns and has a good suspension system. However, pushing it to highway speeds causes the engine to drone and it’s very slow to accelerate.

Edmunds reported that there’s a good amount of road and wind noise inside the cabin. Drivers may also have visibility problems due to the cumbersome roof pillars. However, it does get pretty good gas mileage, an estimated 29 mpg overall. Still, some shoppers might want another subcompact SUV that fares better on the highway and can be equipped with all-wheel drive.

So far, the Toyota C-HR has failed to make much of an impression on either critics or consumers. It has the lowest owner satisfaction score possible on Consumer Reports, and the editors had many complaints about the car. While it certainly has potential, the Toyota C-HR hasn’t found its footing just yet.