Written by Tim Marsh:
The Toyota Tarago has some appealing new upgrades that could generate more interest than there has recently been for this 7 to 8 seater. One of the more spacious people movers on the market, it competes with the likes of the Kia Carnival and the VW Multivan. What kind of value does the Tarago offer? Read on for our in-depth 2014 Toyota Tarago review to find out.
Like last year, the Tarago has 3 different badges: GLi, GLX, and Ultima. The GLi and GLX are available with either a 2.4 or 3.5 L petrol engine, while the Ultima has a 3.5 L engine.
Exterior and Styling
The Tarago has a more aerodynamic design for a more elegant look as well as better fuel efficiency. The front of the car has a curved downward slope and large, projector-style headlamps. Front-to-back lines add to the style, as do the front fog lights. We also like that the side and rear windows are UV-cut tinted. As a large, practical vehicle, the Tarago isn’t going to when any style contests, but it’s far from being an eyesore.
Interior and Comfort
The major benefits of the Tarago are its seating space and storage capacity. This is a people mover that truly does fit 7 to 8 adults in comfort. Unlike some of the smaller people movers and SUVs, the third row offers plenty of leg room, making it a comfortable vehicle not just for families but for business or other use as well. GLX and Ultima models offer increased comfort with two Captain’s chairs in the second row complete with integrated ottoman footrests. Upgrade to the Ultima and you’ll also get leather-accented interior, a moonroof, rear seat entertainment system, and the ability to stow the third-row seats with the touch of a button, among other upgrades.
Under the Bonnet
While the 2.4 L Tarago engine has 4 cylinders and a 7-speed Constantly Variable Transmission (CVT), the 3.5 L has a V6 and Sports Automatic 6-speed transmission. The smaller engine has better fuel economy (8.9 L / 100Km compared to 10.3) but only generates 125 kW of power compared to the 202 kW the 3.5 produces.
On the Road
The Tarago offers a smoother ride than previous models due to its redesigned suspension that has been specifically tuned to Australian roads. The low front profile of the vehicle also offers an impressive turning radius for a vehicle of this size. Obviously, the Tarago isn’t quick off the line due to its size, but it will get you from point A to B in comfort.
With its Safe-T-Cell, Active Braking with intelligence (AB-i), sonar parking sensors, and 7 airbags, the Tarago is a very safe vehicle, earning a 5-star ANCAP safety rating. Other safety features include Vehicle Stability Control (VSC) and an Adaptive Front-lighting System (AFS).
Value for the Money
Although it offers more value than recent models, the 2014 Toyota Tarago price tag of $48,990-$70,665 is fairly hefty even at the entry level despite lacking features like a touch screen and sound system with more than 6 speakers. Basically you’re paying a higher price here because of the space and comfort offered.
The boxier Volkswagen Multivan has a similar price range ($49,990-$77,990) and offers diesel engine models, unlike the Tarago. Their diesel consumes roughly the same amount of fuel as the Tarago’s smaller petrol engine, but is more fuel efficient than the V6 engine. The Kia Grand Carnival is about $10,000 cheaper at the entry level and also offers a diesel-engine model that gives you similar fuel economy but at about $4,000 cheaper than the Tarago.
The Kia Grand Carnival is a more affordable option than the Tarago and offers a better value for the price. However, you might want to find a 2014 Toyota Tarago for sale if you’re looking for a smooth, comfortable ride complete with ottoman footrests in the GXL and Ultima models.
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