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Toyota Innova Touring Sport – Expert review

Toyota Innova Touring Sport – Expert review

Snapshot: If you want an Innova that stands out just a little from the regular Innova then the Touring sport is for you.

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The Touring Sport is proof that Toyota takes the MPV segment very seriously. The Innova after all completely owns this space. But buyers have been wanting to buy an Innova with a little more flair. With SUVs ruling the roost, Toyota has been innovative with its thinking and decided to launch the sportier version of the MPV. In effect it’s the same car, but it showcases that Toyota isn’t resting on its laurels and wants to push the envelope further.

Exteriors
You get the same looks as the Crysta but there are some changes. The blackened out alloy wheels look sportier than the silver ones on the regular car. You also get a black grille which replaces the silver chrome one on the Crysta. The blackened out theme is present on the headlamps as well, while a black cladding runs around the car all along. The biggest difference is the deep red colour available on the car, which the Crysta version won’t offer. The car looks more energetic than the regular Innova’s that ply our roads.


Interiors
The interior also is exactly the same as the Crysta. Though you get prominent dashes of red all along the cabin, especially the centre console area.  You also get red stitching around the seats and the steering wheel area, which adds to the sense of visual appeal. The car is available only in seven seat option, which means that you get captain seats in the middle row. These seats are the best in the MPV business and can seriously rival some business class seats for sheer space and comfort. What you will also enjoy are the tables available on the backrest of the front seats, which can be folded away airplane style. The boot with all three rows up is also of a reasonable size.


Engine, performance and gearbox
You get the same diesel and petrol engine options on the Sport. We sampled the diesel automatic and are happy to report it drives admirably well. The 170bhp is more than adequate for sheer power delivery. You will never be left wanting for more power when on the move. The engine though can get gruff when you rev the engine hard. Keep it around 2,000-3,000rpm and things are better. At speeds of 90-100kph the car remains largely calm and the cabin is an enjoyable place to be in. The gearbox is a six-speed unit. In automatic mode, the car responds well to throttle inputs as well. The shifts are smooth and effortless though the gearbox can sometimes take a second to decide which gear to shift in. 
Ride and handling
The ride comfort on the Sport is brilliant. It simple glides over the worst road surfaces without any fuss. No matter what speeds you drive this car at, it remains unflappable over bad roads. Buyers will also appreciate the low speed ride comfort of the Sport. It simply goes over small bumps and potholes with disdain.


The Innova can’t be termed as a keen drivers car. That said, it still isn’t boring to drive. The steering offers the right amount of weight. It feels communicative and is accurate too. Not bad considering the cars weight and girth.


Summary
If you want a comfortable, relaxing and reliable MPV then the Innova is the last word. The Touring Sport version simply adds more pizzazz to the range and makes it slightly stand out from a sea of Innovas plying our roads.

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