Launch Report: Toyota bZ4X faces considerable competition

30 November 2023

The bZ4X is Toyota’s first battery-electric vehicle (BEV). This all-electric model is an important step for the carmaker, as it is so well known for its hybrid technology. However, the bZ4X faces considerable competition in a market packed with electric SUVs.

With some potentially opinion-dividing design features, the bZ4X will need to appeal with its performance and handling. Sat on top of Toyota’s modular eTNGA platform and developed alongside Subaru, the BEV does do well on and off road.

Autovista Group experts from France, Spain and the UK analysed the model in their respective markets. The car’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats have been benchmarked against key rivals, with new-price points outlined alongside forecast residual values.

Fast, agile and responsive

The bZ4X is a fast, agile and responsive SUV that is very comfortable to drive, with a quiet interior and tight turning circle. The car can come with either all-wheel drive or front-wheel drive.

The 75kWh battery capacity provides a range of around 435km, which is lower than some competitors. The maximum charging speed of 150kW allows the bZ4X to charge from 20% to 80% in under half an hour.

Sharp, angular and striking

The bZ4X has a striking exterior design, with a sharp front end, narrow headlights, and long bonnet. The modern rear end promotes great visibility with its split spoiler and an unobstructed light bar which stretches across the boot.

Features include emergency-stop assist, keyless entry and an automated boot door. The 452-litre boot features a flat floor, with room underneath for charging cables. This will be useful given the lack of storage space under the bonnet.

The side of the vehicle highlights some of the more polarising design choices. The large black cladding over the front wheels and thick arches might put off some potential customers if they prefer more elegant styling.

Ergonomic interior?

Inside, the car is equipped with a good mix of materials, although the instrument cluster and central console do house hard plastics. The car features a good amount of standard equipment, storage, and power outlets. The bZ4X can also be fitted with a 12.3-inch infotainment screen.

Some of the interior elements are not particularly ergonomic, however. The instrument cluster can feel distanced and unaligned from the infotainment screen and steering wheel. Some of the storage is also difficult to reach, such as the compartment in the lowest part of the central console.

Both the front and rear seating is comfortable, with a good amount of space for passengers in the back. People in the rear may find the seating to have a higher knee position, as is the case with many BEVs.

Considerable competition

As Toyota’s first full-electric vehicle, the bZ4X gives the brand its first opportunity in a new sector. The marque has a great record when it comes to reliability, which may help potential customers make up their minds.

While it was a pioneer of hybrid technology, Toyota is a latecomer to the electric SUV market, which is filling rapidly. The bZ4X is up against some considerable competition, including more affordable rivals with longer ranges.

View the Autovista Group dashboard, which benchmarks the bZ4X in France, Spain, and the UK. The interactive dashboard presents new prices, forecast residual values, and SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats) analysis.