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Photos by Kartik Gilatar

They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. If that’s true, the Toyota Urban Cruiser Taisor is a love letter to the Maruti Suzuki Fronx, neatly wrapped with a Toyota bow. With the market already buzzing about the Fronx, one must wonder: is the Taisor just a well-dressed doppelganger, or does it bring its own panache to the party?

Badge engineering is not new to India. We have seen the Daewoo Kalos being sold as the Chevrolet Aveo, Renault Logan as the Mahindra Verito, Daewoo Matiz as the Chevrolet Spark and many such examples with MG rebadging our beloved homegrown Tata Indica as the MG City Rover in the UK.

Toyota has taken the Fronx’s handsome, crossover-esque stance and given it a family facelift. The Urban Cruiser Taisor sports a honeycomb grille and DRLs that nod to its elder sibling, the Urban Cruiser Hyryder. It looks every bit like a Toyota from the front.

Move to the sides, and the Taisor sports 16-inch machine-cut alloys, a five-twin-spoke design that flexes a bit more muscle than its Maruti counterpart. The rear, however, doesn’t stray too far from home. The lightbar stays, but the tail lamps receive a chic C-signature makeover. And for those who love to make a statement, the flagship orange hue will turn heads, with red, white, silver, and grey standing by as more subdued suitors. Dual-tone options add a dash of drama for those inclined.

Step inside, and the déjà vu hits harder than the dream you saw this morning. The cabin is a mirror image of the Fronx, right down to the hard plastics and the piano-black inserts. Toyota could have sprinkled a bit of its own magic here—a beige theme, perhaps, to make things feel roomier and more refined. Alas, the narrow windscreen and the same-old Maruti bits keep things feeling a tad too familiar.
The Taisor comes loaded with features like a heads-up display, auto LED headlamps, cruise control, and a 9-inch touchscreen with wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. It also offers a 360-degree camera, though the resolution could be better. Safety-wise, ESP, hill-start assist, and ABS with EBD are standard, with side and curtain airbags reserved for higher variants.

The dashboard, with its floating touchscreen, doesn’t do any favours for visibility, but hey, it’s a clean design. Maruti’s reputation for durable, if unremarkable, interiors persists here. The seats, however, are a triumph—comfortable for both short hops and long hauls. The rear seats are accessible, but headroom and shoulder room are a squeeze for three. The 308-litre boot is practical enough if you don’t mind lifting your luggage over the high lip.

Under the hood, the Taisor offers two powertrains from Maruti’s stable: the reliable 1.2-litre naturally aspirated petrol engine and the peppy 1.0-litre Boosterjet turbo petrol. While the 12-litre should be adequate for daily commutes, it is also offered with the CNG for eco-conscious buyers.

But the real fun begins with the Boosterjet, which is what we drove. This 1.0-litre turbocharged engine defies its three-cylinder origins with a smooth, refined performance that feels like a four-pot. The turbo-lag is noticeable below 2,500 rpm, but once you hit the sweet spot, the Taisor zips along with a surprising zest.
The six-speed torque converter, borrowed from the Brezza and XL6, offers smooth shifts, though it’s not the quickest on the block. Paddle shifters are a nice touch for those who like to play pretend racer.
Japanese have always been known to make good handlers, and the Urban Cruiser Taisor is no different. It handles undulations with a grace that belies its compact stature, and even sharper bumps are soaked effectively. For a car that stands on hatchback underpinnings, it feels like cars with raised ground clearance are a boon for India.
With a starting price of Rs 7.7 lakh and topping out at just under Rs 13 lakh, the Taisor asks for a bit more dough than the Fronx. But it’s not just about the money. The Taisor brings Toyota’s reliability and an extended three-year warranty (compared to Maruti’s two-year) into the mix, making it an attractive proposition. Fundamentally sound, spacious, and fun to drive, the Taisor is a compelling choice for those who fancy a Toyota badge.

So, is the Toyota Urban Cruiser Taisor worth it? If you fancy a Fronx with a bit of a facelift and a badge that whispers ‘Toyota,’ the answer is a resounding YES.


Toyota Urban Cruiser Taisor



Max Power:

Max Torque:


998cc, I3, turbo-petrol/1498cc, I4, petrol

99 bhp@5500 rpm/89 bhp@6000 rpm

15.05 kgm@2000-4500 rpm/11.52 kgm@4400 rpm

5MT/6AT / 5MT/5AMT


F/R: 195/60 R16


L/W/H (mm):


Ground Clearance:

Kerb Weight:

Fuel Capacity:


2520 mm

190 mm

965-1060 kg

37 litres


Rs 7.73 lakh to 12.87 lakh (ex-showroom)