I found myself staring down drivers in Porsches and Jaguars, yeah, this is an Aygo X Undercover and I look good driving it!
Welcome to the Toyota Aygo, the legendary luxury limited-edition supercar for less than 20K. It is the Aygo X Undercover, a special edition produced in collaboration with influential fashion designer Jun Takahashi of UNDERCOVER. And we felt that maybe that made it interesting enough to cover here. We were hoping it might be fun and were not disappointed. I mean what the hell, this is a 20k car, why are we reviewing it? Because for the money it is excellent.
You can buy ten of them for the price of a supercar. Now that would make a dinky race team, 20 Aygo's tearing around a track. Before you snigger, Toyota did create a bespoke, one-off Toyota Crazy with rear-wheel drive and 200 bhp which cost them 100K. And it still weighed less than a tonne, so the 200 bhp went a long way.
So the Aygo X has been refashioned with an Undercover grey bi-tone paint job, 18" gloss black alloy wheels with striking red V accents and the Takahashi Chaos and Balance motto on the roof. The 1 litre 3-cylinder inline front wheel drive engine comes in manual and automatic and puts out 71 bhp with a top speed of 98 mph, reaching 62 mph in a sedate 14.9 secs. Ah yes, but think of the insurance premiums for those under 25! We took the manual so we could best out the engine, though most will probably opt for the automatic with paddles.
Fuel economy is 57 mpg, which is good, but hybrid cars are now dominating that space with 80 mpg upwards.
The overall look is kind of techno bulldog with a chunky snub nose. The lines, trim and headlights are futuristic and appealing, plus it looks much more powerful than it is.
Undercover Bordeaux partial leather adorns the seats and steering wheel and red and black contrast trim delivers an attractive interior. The egg-shaped design of the infotainment screen stands out. The seats are heated too, a welcome addition as this car probably gets cold in winter.
Yes, the engine is underpowered at 1 litre but it is just pokey enough when driven hard to be entertaining. You will have to rev hard to get moving, but that adds a bit of pleasure and soundtrack to the journey.
The gearbox is firm and swift, providing a go-kart feel. I do worry the clutch is not up to the abusive behaviour a younger audience will subject it too, but time will tell. It’s certainly better than many other little hatchbacks in this class.
The brakes are solid and trustworthy, and the suspension is surprisingly good. It handles speed bumps much better than you would expect.
My first impression was doubtful, but after driving on country roads for a while I genuinely enjoyed it. It actually holds the road pretty well, again enough that you can boy-racer it and feel good, without breaking any speed limits. It handles much better than expected, indeed like a larger car, rather than a compact hatchback, owing perhaps to its mini SUV shape.
It comes with a raft of technology; start/stop, wireless recharge pad, 9” HD multimedia screen with Toyota Smart Connect, hill start assist, smart entry, push button start, rear camera, automatic headlights and decent parking sensors. Plus the CarPlay (Android too) connects better than many luxury cars.
The steering wheel has a host of controls, all plastic but they do the job. In fact, it offers specs way above its price point as well as good looks. There are few small cars being made today, so Toyota is filling a gap in the market.
The back two seats are comfortable enough, and there is 231 litres of boot space. You feel like you're in a trendy Japanese cafe, not a bad sensation.
Damn Toyota for producing such a low-priced car that I actually like. And the insurance on this, even for twenty-year-olds, will be negligible. That’s the point here, a practical car that looks fab and does not break the bank.
I found myself staring down drivers in Porsches and Jaguars, yeah, this is an Aygo X Undercover and I look good driving it. My other cars are McLaren's, Ferraris and Lamborghinis...
The Toyota Aygo X is carving a rather trendy niche out for itself and this special edition is the one to get if you want exclusivity and a good resale value.
It took just a couple of days to turn me from cynic to admirer. Yes, I’d love to see one with just 50 bhp more, which would improve it immensely, but that would negate the purpose of a car that anyone in their twenties can purchase and enjoy without being caned with massive insurance fees.
Driving around I kept seeing other Aygo’s. Hardly surprising, Toyota's quality matched with handsome good looks and an inimitable price point was sure to be popular. The Undercover is a great town runaround that looks cool, is fun to drive and comes with plenty of satisfying technology.