Size does not count with this Terios

Charl Wilken

Charl Wilken

In February this year, we did a test on a used Daihatsu Terios - and the response was overwhelming as people realised the great value for money offered by the little Daihatsu.

The Terios is the kind of car that surprises many when they actually get to drive it.

The first impression about the Terios is that it is underpowered by virtue of its small appearance.

Well, this is where you are wrong. Our used test car for this week is a 2007 Daihatsu Terios 4x4 with low mileage.

Having done just 8000km, this car doesn't only look new, but it still smells like new and drives like that as well.

Not only is the Terios a great- looking car, but it offers a lot to its driver in terms of practicality and comfort.

It is compact and very easy to drive in almost any conditions.

However, this doesn't have to mean that there isn't space for a mouse inside the car.

Daihatsu has always been leaders in building compact cars with some of the best ergonomics.

Head and shoulder room is better than you will find in some of its bigger competitors, and legroom is sufficient enough to see five adults sitting comfortably.

Boot capacity is also fair.

The steering wheel can be adjusted up or down for specific driver preferences, which adds to the comfort.

The instrument panel looks good and speaks of simplicity.

Our model, the 4x4 version, is more capable than one would expect from such a small off-roader.

The Terios also comes with a central diff-lock which helps when things get a little rough.

Now for one of the best attributes of the Terios - fuel efficiency.

The 1,5-litre petrol engine with Toyota's VVT-i technology is a recipe set for very low fuel consumption figures.

Power output stands at 77kW and 140Nm which gets transferred to all four wheels via a five-speed manual transmission.

It might not sound like lots of power, but for the compact Terios this is more than enough.

It feels fairly quick off the mark, and driving at freeway speeds also isn't any problem. Standard features include power steering, electric windows, dual airbags, aircon as well as a front-loading CD player.