After a brief and unexpected encounter with the Blade yesterday it was time today for some official answers from the mouth of Toyota itself.

To make things simple I suggest you take a look at our article about the Toyota Auris right here Toyota Auris Press Conference because the Toyota Blade is nothing more than an "enhanced" Auris.
Toyota started from the Auris to create a luxury hatchback with a bit more of everything such as the leather/alcantara interior, a more powerful engine (2.4L super CVT-i offering 167HP and 224Nm when the Auris tops at 136HP and 175Nm.

With a name such as "Blade" we expected a "sharp" concept designed for a young and dynamic clientele so it was a big suprise when Toyota announced that their latest hatchback will be aiming at an older (40-60) part of the population by proposing a mid-sized luxury car.
When you look at the demographic figures and the 4 million people who will retire in 2007 in Japan, Toyota's plan finally makes sense but the choice of such a name remains odd.

Let's finish with some unofficial news and the rumours of a "sports version" to come for august 2007 and that could be a serious threat in its category, especially versus European competitors; a 2GR-FE V6 engine of 3.5L, 280Hp and 344Nm, not your average 40 to 60 years old car !

okyo — TOYOTA MOTOR CORPORATION (TMC) announced today the nationwide launch in Japan of the Blade compact hatchback through "Toyota" and "Toyopet" dealers.

The Blade has been developed as a high-class hatchback for stylish adults aimed at achieving a new appeal by satisfying the pride of those in it and offering them a sense of fun with eye-catching advanced styling, as well as with the safety and comfort features and driving performance of a luxury sedan, all in an easy-to-handle size.

The exterior has a deeply sculpted form that evokes an energetic feeling that expresses the vehicle's powerful driving performance and conveys a sense of high status, while meticulous attention has been paid to every detail of the interior, including materials and finishes, to create a high-quality and stylish atmosphere.

By equipping the compact body with a 2.4-liter engine, the Blade exhibits dynamic performance with power to spare, and the newly designed suspension provides superior cruising performance. In addition to its outstanding environmental performance, the vehicle also achieves safety performance at the highest levels in its class through the adoption of VSC (Vehicle Stability Control) and TRC (Traction Control) systems, SRS side and curtain shield airbags and driver's seat SRS knee air bags as standard on all vehicles in the series.

As the highest-class Toyota brand hatchback, the Blade seeks to appeal to the sensitivities of customers with an inclination toward refined and stylish lifestyles and is designed to pioneer a new vehicle market.

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Press conference on the Toyota Blade

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