Is the BZ4X a serious Model Y rival? (Toyota BZ4X 2023 review)
The companys had a lot of credit for its hybrids. It introduced those more than two decades ago and they do make a decent Dent into vehicle emissions. But of course, full battery EVS are the next Frontier Tesla is kind of running away with the market around the world, and here in Australia – and this is one of the cars that Toyota intends to put a stop to that. This is the bz4x. The first series production Toyota EV its here in Australia and Im gon na drive it today much earlier than its release date, which is going to be in the fourth quarter of 2023 sometime between October and December. So is the bz4x worth waiting for. How much is it going to cost how much range does it has well answer all of those questions in todays video Hit subscribe down below Chasing Cars, honest reviews of your next car brought to you by when it comes to battery size, range charging, warranty and other Running issues the blizzard Forex is about mid pack now Toyota says that its capable of 150 kilowatt charging speeds, which are actually decent for this segment and the claimed recharging time with a compatible charger is about 30 minutes to go to 80 of the battery. So well obviously do our own range and charging tests once the car is launched here in Australia. So well know for sure. Now the car has a 64 kilowatt hour usable battery and the claim range is 470 Ks for this all wheel, drive model and just over 500, if youre, okay with front wheel, drive and thats impressively low, claimed consumption of about 13.
6 kilowatt hours per 100 Ks. For the all wheel drive but as well find out in just a second, I was only able to get 19 on my test drive today. Of course, that could be the fact that its a UK car were at a test track here. I dont know, but thats. Obviously, a lot worse than the claim so well have to wait and see in the real world. Now we have heard a bit about very slow recharging and very low range in super cold winter climates in Europe. But thankfully, here in Australia, with a very moderate sort of weather pattern that shouldnt be too much of an issue but well see now. An interesting thing is that Toyota actually warrants the battery of the bz4x for 10 years thats for 70 retention of its original capacity. So anything worse than that, then theyll, basically swap out enough of the battery until you get back Above That 70 Mark moving around the back of the bz4x. Now its pretty distinctly a coupe SUV, its 4 690 mils long, which is about seven centimeters longer than a RAV4. So that should give you a decent view of how big this car is. Now. This is a kind of top of the range all wheel drive model from the UK. Weve got a power Tailgater standard. It gets out of the way quickly and reveals this much space Ill. Put the leader number on screen. Now its fairly practical youve got some hooks.
Youve got a cargo blind and those back seats, fold 60 40 as well. So you can take longer stuff with you, but one feature you wont find on. The bz4x is a spare wheel, jumping into the bz4x and its immediately clear to me that this EV gets a lot right now, its obviously very different to a Tesla Model Y in here. And if you like, the interior design of the Teslas, then this will probably be something that you hate and thats. Okay, because there is something for everyone and design is subjective. But the first thing that I love about the interior of the bz4x here in Australia. On a hot day, kind of regretting this jacket is that the seats are vinyl, much like they are on the model y, but theyre perforated, which helps to Wick away, sweat and theyre. Also, actively cool theyve got Heating and Cooling in them, which just keeps you much colder much calmer. While you drive in the summer love that thats going to play really well in Australia, especially because you cant get a RAV4 with cooled seats, which is a bit weird. Looking forward, weve got a very futuristic dashboard with this kind of funny old plastic panel. Here that leads up to a digital instrument. Cluster. With your speed range consumption, media navigation, you can put a lot up there, which is cool, and you can control that screen with these quick access buttons on this really alien sort of steering wheel, youve got to drive a monitor here.
Thats checking that youre looking at the road as well now in the center things are a bit more conventional weve got a big wide touch screen same as the one thats coming out in the 2023 Kluger and a few other cars in the Toyota Universe, and then, Like touch buttons for the climate, here we have rockers for the fan and stuff thats good. Then these other buttons for like air circulation and stuff, its all piano black, so thats going to mark up really horribly. This is piano black through here as well. Awful really wish this was just like a matte plastic. Instead of a reflective, fingerprinty surface thats. One thing I would change and its one thing: Toyota hasnt used on the dash, which actually has this really cool textile on it, which is much nicer and cooler and more premium feeling than piano black on the doors. All soft material reals, more piano black, but its quite a presentable interior and even though the steering wheel and that screen look a bit freaky, everything actually works. Just as youd expect from a normal car and normalcy is the vibe of the bz4x. The seats themselves. Theyve got electric adjustment theyre comfortable, theyre, supportive, and this light gray. Color is also great for Australia because it reflects light. So, hopefully, Toyota, Australia, chooses to bring these gray seats out here for the bz4x. This car was sourced from the UK. Its a high spec car 20 inch wheels, not quite representative of what were going to get here in Australia here in the back its mostly good with a couple of negative points in terms of the space on offer really impressive.
Im six foot tall Ive got good Headroom. Despite the fact this car has a twin, fixed non opening. Sunroof legroom is amazing because the wheelbase of the bz4x is longer than that of a RAV4, but tow room is a massive problem and thats because were sitting on the battery here. The drivers seat is at the lowest setting, and I dont have what my colleague Andrew sluice calls a foot garage as in a cut out in the battery, where your feet could go something that the Porsche ticon has that cars a little bit more expensive than this Car lets tell the truth, but it does mean that youve really got to splay your legs in order to get comfortable and thats a problem that so many EVS in Australia have now in terms of amenities. Weve got air vents in the back. Here, weve got USBC ports, no sun blinds, unfortunately, no heated rear seats which actually helps you save range compared to blasting the heater in the winter. But we do get a flip down armrest with cup holders and a device holder as well, and all these materials here are still soft. Although this one is a little bit squeaky, which is weird because this is not a pre production car, this is a production line. Car from the UK, so this is our first drive in the Toyota bz4x on Australian soil and a bit like the preview drive that I did for you guys in the Lexus RZ 450e.
Im doing it here at a private test track its actually at the old Toyota. Camry manufacturing plant in Victoria and Toyota has quite a neat little track here with some high speed Corners, even a few bumps running down the center and its a good opportunity to get a taste test of the bz4x before it launches in the fourth quarter of 2023. Here in Australia now we cant drive this car on the road, because this is actually a UK market car, so its not able to be registered. It has to be driven on private roads, but thankfully weve got a pretty good private road to do it on right. Here so look, it is a preview, its early days, so Im just going to tell you what Ive been able to take from the experience at first, and the main thing is that Toyota has engineered a battery electric vehicle here, which is very, very smooth and easy To drive its not going to be the fastest battery EV its not going to be the sportiest its not going to have the longest range, but one thing that it will do is make life very easy to get out of one of Toyotas existing cars. You might already own a hybrid RAV4 or something like that and youll get into the bz4x and youll be like oh yeah. This drives pretty much just like my old car and while some people are looking for like a more futuristic high performance experience and those people will probably prefer like a Tesla Model.
Why and thats? Okay, there is going to be a big chunk of people that just want to drive a normal car that happens to be fully electric and the sense that Ive gotten in this early impression is that thats exactly what the bz4x is going to be good at. But lets talk about some specs if youre interested in those theres, basically, two flavors of bz4x, a front wheel, drive version and an all wheel, drive version and both of them are under consideration for Australia. Speaking with me today, Toyota, Australia bosses say theyre very aware that more and more people are wanting to go for all wheel drive, including on the RAV4 hybrid. So it would shock me if you couldnt get an all wheel, drive bz4x in Australia, but basically the front wheel, drive car. It makes 150 kilowatts of power, its got a single motor on the front axle and then the all wheel drive adds a smaller 80 kilowatt motor on the rear axle. The peak maximum outputs are just above 160 kilowatts, so its not intended to be a sports SUV. The Lexus RZ 450e uses the same platform as this car and similar bones, including dual motor, all wheel drive, but it makes quite a lot more power. However, if we line up were in our 100 Zone on this test track, if we line up on the test track here and we just plant it, you know its not sort of slow Toyota claims 6.
9 seconds 0 to 100 for the all wheel, drive 7.5 for The front drive so like not super fast, but also not slow kind of in line with a RAV4 hybrid, maybe a little bit quicker, despite the fact that this car is heavier than a RAV4 about the same size. Dimensionally, though that said, the bz4x is lighter than a lot of other EVS on the market, because Toyota has gone for a relatively small battery that has positives and negatives. A negative is that the range isnt as good as some other EVS – I did a little economy run today. As best I could. I was able to get 19 kilowatt hours per 100 case on a 64 kilowatt hour usable battery. That means a real world range of just under 340 K, so not awesome, but about the same as a Tesla Model y rear wheel drive so its not worlds. Apart from that car, but Vehicles like the Hyundai ionic rear drive are going to give you more range than this car. That said, massive asterisks weve got to do our real world Highway range and recharging tests, which were known for on chasing cars, so stay tuned. For that late in 2023, but an upside having a small battery is exactly what youre seeing right now the bz4x is quite rewarding to drive and weve been saying that about new Toyotas for years now, every new Toyota model that comes out seemingly has really nice Dynamics.
It steers well, it handles well, it rides well and from what I can tell here on this closed track. The bz4x has really nicely tuned, steering it Corners very flat, thats typical for an EV, but it holds its weight really well in the corners, and it feels like its going to be a satisfying car to drive and reading reviews and comparison tests from people overseas. Who know what theyre talking about the bay said 4X is said to handle pretty nicely on a back road and thats important to me may or may not be important to you, but the smaller battery means less weight and more agility and possibly a better ride quality. As well, although its a little hard to test that attribute here now, weve got a button on the center console for one pedal driving its not a specially strong one pedal driving when you lift off as Im doing now, you sort of slowly drift down to a Slow speed its not like a neck snapping thing and theres only one mode. You can turn that off and then the car will just sail and you know youll either prefer one or the other, but youre not going to be able to get like a true one. Pedal driving experience, which I know a lot of people like that said. The massive caveat is that this bz4x is a UK spec car all wheel, drive 2022 build Australia will be getting a 2024 model year in late 2023 and Toyota.
Australia has already told us there will be some undisclosed used, spec change to this car. They wont tell us what it is, maybe its going to get a slightly bigger battery, maybe its going to get a bit more range, maybe its going to get a bit more power. Maybe the 150 kilowatt charging speed will be improved, especially because we know from overseas that cold weather charging hasnt been that great in the bz4x. But here in Australia we get really moderate weather. So not expecting it to be a huge problem here, but therell be something new. What I can say, though, is the safety systems are nicely tuned. The lane keep assist is subtle and smooth, and that means that youre not likely to turn it off, and we know that overseas theres been some pretty big recalls on the bz4x. The fact that were getting it so much later than the rest of the world means its pretty likely that stuff will all be resolved before this thing enters Australian showrooms. So those are my very first impressions from driving the new Toyota bz4x. Now we know that the car that will come to Australia in late 2023 will be a little bit better than this one. There is some kind of specification upgrade coming later this year. As for price, we think its going to be maybe 70 or 75 000. So quite a bit more expensive than the RAV4 could be wrong, but Toyota is definitely softening the ground that this is not going to be a cheap car, and you can, let me know your thoughts on that down below this video, but in terms of driving.
It feels very smooth. It actually feels quite Pleasant to drive, not sponsored not paid for by turn data. Just my Impressions from behind the wheel but of course its all going to be down to that on road experience and a comparison with the model Y and the ionic 5 and ev6 when this thing launches, but very keen to hear your opinion.