Today’s debut adds key details to the images that surfaced earlier, along with confirmation that an Australian launch will occur in early 2017.
Unveiling the new model in Geneva, Toyota Europe executive vice president Karl Schlicht said that while the car maker may have been slow to the small SUV segment, the C-HR - which stands for “Coupe High Rider” - has been worth the wait.
The model unveiled in Geneva is a 98kW hybrid variant, matching a 1.8-litre petrol engine with an electric motor, but Australian models will be driven by a 1.2-litre turbocharged petrol engine offering 85kW of power and 185Nm of torque - the latter available from 1500 to 4000rpm.
Local models will also be available in front- and all-wheel drive forms, matched to six-speed manual and CVT automatic transmissions.
Measuring 4350mm long, 1795mm wide, 1550mm tall and with a 2640mm wheelbase, the C-HR is actually larger in every direction than a Corolla hatch.
By comparison, the Corolla hatch measures 4275mm long, 1760mm tall and 1460mm tall on a 2600mm wheelbase, while the Rav4 measures 4570mm long, 1845mm wide, and around 1660-1705mm tall on a 2660mm wheelbase.
Although smaller than the RAV4, the C-HR is also notably larger than ‘quirky’ style rival the Nissan Juke (4125mm long on 2530mm wheelbase), coming closer instead to the Nissan Qashqai, which measures 4370mm long on a 246mm wheelbase.
Confirmation of an Australian debut follows comments last year that hinted at a significant push from the company’s local arm to get the C-HR down under.
“The effort being put in is substantial – that’s more in terms of specification and pricing and making sure everything is right for our market before we throw our complete weight behind it,” Toyota Australia communications executive Stephen Coughlan told CarAdvice at last year’s Frankfurt motor show.
“But there’s certainly a very strong interest, and obviously a very strong opportunity there for the car.”
Watch for more on the new C-HR to be revealed in the year ahead.