Toyota Innova 2021 Review
There are plenty of models within the Toyota lineup that fly the flag – models which sell in massive numbers, or the absolute halo cars that really define the brand. And then there are the models that exist in the mid-range, which don’t get as much of the spotlight but are nonetheless just as important in fulfilling the positional requirements for the brand, offering loyal customers something to move up to as they develop more earning power.
The Toyota Innova is one such example of this – not being the cheapest seven seater option in Toyota’s range, nor being the most luxurious. It’s based on a body-on-frame platform derived from the same one underpinning the Hilux pickup and Fortuner the SUV. It’s also a model that’s limited to the ASEAN region, being especially popular in markets like Indonesia.
This particular generation of Innova is the second in its lineage, launched in 2015 and updated most recently in 2021. Other markets may get a variety of powertrains, but in Malaysia we get one engine and one transmission to provide motive force for three different variants on offer. Ultimately it is a seven-seater MPV, not quite having as strong SUV aspirations as something like the Rush, but still having sufficient ground clearance indicative of a product designed for less-than-ideal roads.
It is with this in mind that the Innova has remained staunchly a rear-wheel drive vehicle, similar to the Avanza and Rush in this regard. This is because of the understanding that with a full load of passengers on slippery terrain, front-wheel drive vehicles struggle to find traction and get moving whereas rear-wheel drive models have less of an issue. There is a trade-off in efficiency, but the practical benefits make this worth the endeavour.
Toyota Innova 2021 Specifications
As mentioned before, there is but one engine option available for the Malaysian market – a naturally-aspirated 2.0-litre petrol engine making 139 PS and 183 Nm of torque. The figures aren’t exactly mind blowing, though this is an engine designed more for robustness and longevity – it still comes packaged with Dual VVT-I to broaden the torque curve and improve efficiency.
In other markets, there are engines such as the 2.7-litre petrol powerplant from the Hilux or Fortuner, as well as 2.4-litre and 2.8-litre turbodiesel variants. For Malaysia, there is also a singular six-speed automatic transmission delivering drive to the rear wheels, although in other markets there are options such as a five- or six-speed manual, and a five-speed automatic.
It’s also important to remember that drive is delivered to the rear wheels – something that naturally provides a little more stability, and offers a turning radius that’s just 5.4 metres thanks to less complex front end suspension design.
The wheelbase stretches 2,750 mm long, for a length of 4,735 mm and a width of 1,830 mm. The ground clearance is a reasonable 200 mm – enough to clear the errant curb you don’t happen to see, or a little bit of flooded road that happens to be exceedingly common during monsoon seasons.
Toyota Innova 2021 Exterior
This is definitely an area where form follows function, with the Toyota Innova looking barely more aerodynamic than a tissue box. That being said, the 2.0X definitely stands out with its enhancement package, adding Front and Rear bumper spoilers, overfenders, and rocker lower mouldings. It also steps up halogen headlights to LED projector units, along with LED daytime running lights in place of regular bulb elements, and a pair of LED fog lights as well. It also happens to be the sole variant with larger 17-inch wheels, while other variants make do with 16-inch pieces.
Toyota Innova 2021 Interior
For the most part, the interior of all three Toyota Innova variants are the same – but there is a specific difference for the 2.0X variant that comes in the form of the Captain Seats for the second row – losing a seat, in favour of more comfort and walk-through practicality. The interior trim is fabric wrapped for the 2.0E model, combining silver and piano black elements for the higher-grade variants. There is also combination leather for the 2.0X variant, whereas the other variants make do with black fabric seats.
Toyota Innova 2021 Safety Features
Hailing from the mid 2010s, it’s understandable that the Toyota Innova doesn’t come with some of the more advanced safety systems like autonomous emergency braking – things you find commonplace on offerings like the Toyota Rush. The most advanced system it does come with is the Blind Spot monitor with Rear Cross Traffic Alert – standard for the 2.0G and 2.0X variants, and optional for the 2.0E.
Beyond this, all other safety systems are flat across the range. Items like ABS with EBD and Brake Assist, Vehicle Stability Control with Traction Control and Hill-start Assist, as well as seven airbags throughout the cabin are all standard. All three rows of seats get three-point seatbelts, and the second row of seats gets ISOFIX mounting points for best child-seat mounting practices.
Toyota Innova 2021 Strengths & Weakness
There’s a certain beauty and reliability in simplicity, which is where the Toyota Innova really manages to make a name. It may not have the most power, or the most luxurious interior, or the most aggressive pricing – but it can definitely eat up the miles and probably take to less-than-regular servicing far better than other options on the market.
On that note, it’s also worth remembering that the Innova exists largely in a class of its own. This doesn’t mean that it can be uncompetitive – but without natural rivals there’s no incentive to really push the product composition. When you observe the list of features however, you will realize that perhaps the only thing Toyota could offer “more” of is a larger engine.
Toyota Innova 2021 Price
With three variants of the Toyota Innova on offer, entry pricing starts at RM 111,622.00 for the Innova 2.0E (AT), going up to RM 121,483.00 for the Innova 2.0G (AT), and topping out at RM 129,677.00 for the Innova 2.0X (AT). As you can see there isn’t a huge deal of difference in terms of pricing from entry to top end, and this is reflected appropriately in the amount of equipment provided at each price point. Pricing is on-the-road, though with whatever exemptions are currently in place.
Toyota Innova 2021 Features
If you’re taking up the entry level Toyota Innova in the form of the 2.0E, you get a simple back-lit instrument cluster, and a simple multi-information display. The head unit is a CD player with a tuner for the radio, as well as MP3 functionality and AUX, USB, and Bluetooth connectivity. There is also a six-speaker sound system, a USB charging port, and manual air conditioning for the front and rear.
Stepping up to the 2.0G variant, you get a nicer Optitron-type instrument cluster, with a 4.2-inch colour TFT inlay for the multi-information display, and a nine-inch capacitive touch-screen head unit that functions as infotainment. The head unit has Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity, as well as connecting to the reverse camera. Air conditioning is upgraded to automatic for both the front and rear, and keyless entry and start are provided as part of the package. There’s also a Panoramic View Monitor, giving you a bird’s eye view for ease of parking. The only extra feature that the 2.0X adds is an eight-way power adjustable driver seats
Toyota Innova 2021 Fuel Consumption
The manufacturer quoted fuel consumption figure for the Toyota Innova stands at 9.1 litres per 100 kilometres, or just under 11 kilometres per litre. This isn’t the most economical of options, but given that it is neither turbocharged nor does it have a CVT-type automatic transmission, this figure happens to be more consistent even with less-than-economical driving styles.
Exclusive deals for you
Get October Offers from authorized dealers near you!
- Body Type: MPV
- Transmission: Automatic
- Engine Capacity: 1998 cc
- Fuel Type: petrol
- Seat Capacity: 7 - 8
- Price: RM 111,622 - RM 129,677
03 Jul 2018
Toyota Innova 2.0X– Crossover Meets MPV
One feature we find absolutely useful and befitting the captain-seat premium image in the Innova X is the fitment of the front passenger seat slide lever. Mounted on the right shoulder, this lever allows the driver or second-row left passenger to slide the front passenger seat for more leg roomView full review
28 Feb 2018
2017 Toyota Innova – The Salary Man’s Alphard
Upon hopping into the new Innova, we were greeted by a cabin which looked like a more affordable version of the Alphard to be honest. The multi-info instrument panel, the redesigned dashboard clad in material that look much more premium than the outgoing model, the steering wheel which comprised a combination of wood and leather, ambient lighting, impressive audio system, the 8-inch touch screen infotainment system (optional), and the “striped” black striped seats did not only feel easy on the eye, but also on our hands.View full review
User Review of Toyota Innova
Best Mpv car fits for whole family.
Good family car
Review Innova 2018
SUV like MPV
Nice car to buy