Toyota C-HR Crossover To Get All-Wheel Drive By 2019 - Too Late?
Toyota's new C-HR is a hit. The company describes the C-HR as, "...a stylish and technology-filled subcompact SUV crossover vehicle." We won't argue that the C-HR is stylish and technology-filled, but how can any vehicle with just front wheel drive be called a crossover or a sport utility vehicle?
C-HR Development & Background
The C-HR was originally intended to be a new Scion model. Scion was at death's door when the C-HR was in development and Toyota didn't have time to make many adjustments before the plug was pulled on Scion. That left the company with a cool new subcompact car without any AWD option. Every competitor to the C-HR, such as Mazda's CX-3 and Honda's HR-V has AWD and the majority of sales in key markets are AWD-equipped trims. Still, Toyota went forward and launched the C-HR.
C-HR Success So Far
Toyota is happy they did proceed with the C-HR. Sales have been robust. The list of models that the C-HR currently outsells after just a few short months on the market is impressive. The vehicle also fills a gap in the Toyota product line. Something that Toyota needs in order to avoid having compact crossover shoppers head to other brands' dealerships.
C-HR Platform and AWD Timing
The C-HR is built on the same new platform that the Prius and Camry are. Called the Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA), this platform is very "adaptable." That is whole the point of using a platform for many vehicles and thus saving money. One way the TNGA platform is adaptable is to all-wheel drive. Torque News recently confirmed this at a Toyota media event for another vehicle. During that event, the press asked questions of the Toyota representatives who officially won't comment on future products but hinted strongly that during the mid-year refresh of the C-HR Toyota will launch it with optional AWD. That should occur during calendar 2019.