Days ago, we brought you a report noting that the Liva hatchback from Toyota being all set to get the hot hatch treatment by means of an engine transplant. To become a hot hatch, the Toyota Liva will get the 1.5 Liter petrol engine borrowed from petrol variant of the Etios sedan. The Liva with the 1.5 Liter petrol engine that outputs 90 Bhp of peak power and 132 Nm of peak torque is expected to be a much faster car given the peppy nature of the 1.5 liter motor. Along with the more powerful engine, the Liva 1.5 is expected to retain the sporty TRD Sportivo body kit to bolster its sporty credentials.
While the Etios sedan is a fine handler, the Liva hatchback could do with better sorted suspension. The hot hatch upgrade to th Etios Liva is expected to address this area. So, expect the Liva to be a fun to drive car. This move from Toyota to give the Liva more performance seems like one that is targeted to catch the attention of younger car buyers. Thus far, the Etios and Liva twins have been given the miss by most young car buyers due to the uninspired styling, insipid interiors and the overall blandness of these cars.
Outfitting these cars with the TRD Sportivo kits was one move from Toyota to spice things up. The Liva getting the hot hatch treatment will only continue this approach from Toyota. On the insides too, the Liva hot hatch could get a once over with new bits that make the insides of the car feel more premium than the current versions. With the addition of the 1.5 Liter petrol engine, the Etios Liva will no longer be eligible for the lower excise duty that small cars in India get from the Indian government. So, expect to pay at least INR 30,000 to 40,000 more for the Liva equipped with the 1.5 Liter petrol engine.
The entry level versions of the Liva with the 1.2 liter petrol engine will continue to be sold in India and so will the 1.4 Liter turbo diesel engined variants. With this development, the Liva will become the only petrol powered hot hatch to be sold in India as both Volkswagen and Skoda have discontinued the Polo 1.6 and the Fabia 1.6 hatchbacks. Does the Liva 1.5 make things interesting enough for a small car buyer to go ahead and buy one? We’d love to hear your views through the comments section below.