EXAM season is here again.
We’ve all been there: That sinking feeling when you realise you missed the final page of a GCSE maths paper you thought you’d aced.
I remember looking out the window while everyone else still had their head down, only to be told later by a mate there were 15 questions, not 12.
The reason I bring it up is because I got reminded of that horrible feeling driving the Toyota Aygo X. It’s a car of two halves. Toyota gets an A* for all the work it has done up front.
Bigger infotainment screen, wireless Apple CarPlay, loads of safety tech, nice driving position, X-patterned seats. And it looks cool on the outside too.
But when it comes to the back half of the car, it’s a D-.
It’s like Toyota skipped the last page of revision notes on what makes a great little car.
Allow me to explain.
The rear bench is cheap and a bit nasty. No shape. No fancy pattern. Zero love.
The tailgate is still a glass panel. The boot is smaller than a mouse’s backpack, the parcel shelf as flimsy as a kid’s stick-on sun blind.
No surprise, there’s no USBs in the cheap seats either. And no door pockets. Which is a shame because Toyota has got everything else so right — and should be applauded for sticking with affordable small cars when many rivals are walking away.
The axe has already fallen on the Citroen C1, Peugeot 108, Ford Ka, Vauxhall Adam, Seat Mii and Skoda Citigo.
The Audi A1 won’t be replaced and even Britain’s best-selling car ever, the Ford Fiesta, is being phased out.
Toyota is keeping things simple with the Aygo X by offering just a single 1-litre engine (72hp, no turbo, no hybrid) with a choice of five-speed manual or automatic, on all four trim levels.
It’s a fun little thing to hustle, does good numbers — we got 48mpg — and you can trust Toyota for bombproof reliability.
At just 3.7m long, you can park it anywhere. You wouldn’t want to do airport runs in one but for pinballing around your local neighbourhood it’s a good bit of kit.
For those sat up front, that is. Now here’s the rub.
Prices start at £14,805 for the Aygo X Pure — £153 a month on finance — and the kit list doesn’t disappoint.
Adaptive cruise control, reversing camera, hill start assist, automatic headlights, Apple CarPlay and 17in alloys are all standard.
The £17,725 Exclusive we tested (£195 a month) unlocks the bigger 9in touchscreen, wireless phone charging, LED lights, privacy glass, 18in alloys and a two-tone paint job.
You can also spec a retractable canvas roof and a fancy JBL sound system.
Is it worth the extra tenner a week? I’ll let you do the maths.
KEY FACTS: TOYOTA AYGO X EXCLUSIVE
- Price: £17,725
- Engine: 1-litre 3cyl petrol
- Power: 72hp
- 0-62mph: 15.6 secs
- Top speed: 98mph
- Economy: 56mpg
- CO2: 110g/km
- Out: Now