Toyota Granvia VX Six Seat 2020 Review

Toyota Granvia is more than a replacement for the Tarago

2019 Toyota Granvia VX. Toyota released the Granvia VX in late 2019 and I have to admit I wasn’t really sure what to make of it. I didn’t go to the launch, one of my compatriots went, and I was in the middle of OzRoamer’s COTY, so it wasn’t really a focus for me.

However fast forward to early April and I have a Granvia VX 6 seat version for a test and I’m impressed.

My sister was a very early adopter of the Toyota Tarago all those years ago, buying one in the first month they were available and I always thought that was a practical vehicle for her as she found it difficult to go anywhere without an excessive amount of gear with two little kids.

I was sitting in the carpark of Coles yesterday and a bloke came up to the car, looked all around and gave it the thumbs up. I would down the window and he asked me where I imported it from. When I told him it was from Toyota and available for sale at around $70,000 (I hadn’t checked the exact details yet) he said he’s getting one and immediately walked off looking it up on the Toyota site. Chalk one sale up.

2020 Toyota Granvia VX profile

What is the Granvia VX Exterior like?

Well it’s a Hiace really, with some extra bling and the black colour looks both imposing and impressive. I’ve found the new grill is somewhat polarising for the public, they either seem to like it or not.

The Granvia looks big, bold and wide and with the premium touches that include auto LED headlights, taillights, foglights and daytime running lights, 17-inch alloys wheels with 235/60R17 tyres, and chrome garnishes adding an air of luxury.

The black looks cool and I can think if it had blacked out windows it would leave people imagining who or what was inside.

2019 Toyota Granvia VX interior.

So is the Granvia VX comfortable inside?

One thing that immediately struck me was the ease of entry and exit. There is a handy step up to the premium leather driver’s seat. Plonk yourself in the seat and the level of space and comfort is also obvious.

While the driver has the benefit of electronic seat adjustment, there is no additional lumbar support, but the seats are very comfortable nonetheless. The front passenger has to make do with manual adjustments. This seems odd given the rear seat luxury.

I would like to see the driver’s seat with at least heating, lumbar support and a massage function. Ideally both front seats would be electrically adjustable with additional lumbar support and air conditioned. This could be an option.

2019 Toyota Granvia VX.

In front of the driver is a large instrument binnacle with two large outer dials and central 4.2 inch MFD. The leather and woodgrain steering wheel is a good size and height and reach adjustable, housing cruise control, audio, multimedia and vehicle settings. It has the new Toyota cruise control buttons. I personally liked the older stalk system, it is simple and practical, but these are ok. A HUD would also be handy.

As this is a van based vehicle the transmission lever is mounted on the dash.

Controls for the front climate control – there is a second independent control for the rear in the headlining behind the front seats – sit below a large central 7-inch touchscreen that displays all information for the satellite navigation, AM/FM/digital4 radio, CD player and multimedia system.

2019 Toyota Granvia VX interior.

This latest generation system also features full Bluetooth connectivity, voice recognition, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, and USB and Auxiliary input sockets. To deliver quality sound reproduction there are 12 Pioneer®6 speakers and an 8-channel amplifier in the Granvia VX.

Centre console is a huge bin with a practical lipped lid for placing items on. Behind are two cup holders and in front is a tray. All exceptionally practical, but if we are talking a luxury people mover a fridge in the bin might be handy.

Storage is excellent for little items with large door pockets, cup and bottle holders, little cubby holes, a large glove box and afore mentioned centre console bin.

2019 Toyota Granvia VX interior.

Step in through either of the power operated rear dual sliding doors and the same premium ambience continues.

Six-seater variants feature an incredibly spacious rear cabin with four power operated individual captain’s chairs with armrests, reclining backrests and power operated ottoman leg rest.

They also have adjustable headrests and solid armrests with all seats finished in a luxurious quilted leather-accent upholstery. For convenience there are LED adjustable reading lights and six USB power sockets.

The rear seats have a sliding seat base that adjusts along a length of more than 50cm ensuring easy access and the flexibility to accommodate a variety of passengers in supreme comfort.

Cargo space is based on where the seats sit and has a low flat floor. The rear door opens vertically, which has the benefit of providing a cover, but needs extra room when accessing.

2020 Toyota Granvia VX driving 2

What Features does the Granvia VX have?

Granvia is very well appointed with standard features, some which have already been mentioned. Additional features include;

Exterior

  • Auto LED headlights, taillights and daytime running lights
  • Front and rear LED fog lamps
  • Heated and folding electric exterior mirrors
  • Automatic rain-sensing windscreen wipers
  • Manual dual side sliding doors
  • 17-inch alloy wheels with full-size spare

Interior

  • Front and rear LED interior lights
  • Driver and front passenger illuminated vanity mirrors
  • Six rear coat hooks
  • Keyless smart entry and start
  • Front and rear 12-volt accessory sockets
  • Six rear USB power sockets
  • Rear sun shade blinds
  • Nanoe dehumifier

2019 Toyota Granvia range 2.8-litre turbodiesel engine.

Granvia VX Drive and Engine.

Power for the new Granvia comes from the same 2.8-litre four-cylinder turbodiesel engine that sits in the HiLux. It generates maximum power of 130kW @ 3400 rpm and torque of 450Nm @ 1600 – 2400 rpm. This drives the rear wheels through a standard six-speed automatic transmission. I would love to see an AWD version as this would be a great vehicle for snow trips.

Complete with a stop & start system, it offers an ADR fuel consumption of just 8.0l/100km, and CO2 emissions of 211g/km.

To ensure the optimum balance of ride comfort and solid, stable handling, Toyota has employed a MacPherson front strut and four-link rear suspension with coil springs.

Efficient braking comes courtesy of large ventilated discs all-round while the hydraulically-assisted rack and pinion steering delivers direct feel and easy manoeuvrability.

The Granvia is also fitted with an electronically-controlled Auto LSD that applies the brakes to individual wheels to ensure drive torque is delivered to the rear wheel with the most grip.

2019 Toyota Granvia VX.

What is the Granvia VX like to drive?

Surprisingly good is the immediate answer. As it has the same engine as the HiLux, it’s a strong base.

The ride is compliant and firm at the same time. Again surprisingly it doesn’t seem to vary much no matter what the load on board. That is a plus and provides a smooth ride for occupants. Handling is slightly better than you would expect, but is certainly not for flinging around corners. Restrained progress is the way to go.

The turning circle seems very tight and at 11mtrs is good for the size. It feels smaller. Steering provides a direct response through the hydraulically-assisted rack and pinion steering system and adds to the overall feeling of control.

Being a slab sided van, there is no getting away from that, it is affected badly by head and cross winds though. It’s also wide, so fitting into tight parking spots is sometimes difficult. The reverse camera is excellent though.

2020 Toyota Granvia VX rear seats 2

What safety features does Granvia VX have?

Granvia has a five star ANCAP safety rating (2019) and includes a fair swag of safety features from Toyota as standard.

These include:

  • Pre-collision safety system (PCS) with pedestrian detection (day and night) and cyclist detection (day only),
  • high-speed active cruise control, with selective radar assist
  • Lane departure alert with steering assist and steering vibration
  • road sign assist,
  • automatic high beam
  • ABS with brake assist, vehicle stability control, traction control, auto LSD and trailer sway control
  • Auto high beam,
  • Hill-start assist
  • Panoramic view monitor and
  • Auto-dimming digital rear-view mirror
  • Captain’s chairs with ISOFIX anchorage points for child safety seats,

Other advanced safety features include blind-spot monitor, rear cross-traffic alert, front and rear parking sensors, reversing camera with guide lines, panoramic view monitor and nine airbags.

The lane departure alert function will warn the driver if the system detects that the car has deviated from its lane with visual and audible alerts and if necessary, provide steering assistance via the braking system. It can be good but also intrusive if you are a driver that tends to skirt the corners. I tended to turn it off.

2020 Toyota Granvia VX Dimensions

Granvia VX Dimensions

With an overall length of 5300mm, width of 1970mm and height measuring 1990mm, the new Granvia is a fair lump of a vehicle.  The wheelbase is a handy 3210mm and wheel track is 1675mm. This means that the third row seats still have plenty of room. Kerb weight is 2605kg, but in all honesty it never feels heavy.

2019 Toyota Granvia VX.

Granvia VX fit for purpose

Granvia is aimed at high end hospitality, family and corporate buyers. With a choice of six or eight seat versions, the six seat version provides the best balance between room, luxury and practicality. Eight-seater models add a fourth-row, two-seat 60/40-split bench.

“Whether you are in need of a five-star hotel shuttle, corporate transport for senior executives or just a large luxury family wagon, the new Granvia fits the bill,” Mr Hanley said.

My partner absolutely refused to sit in the front seat. She sat in the second row every time, had the ottoman out and somehow indulged her fantasy of being a famous star being chauffeured around. That’s the purpose of the vehicle.

Granvia VX Summary

In short I really liked the Granvia VX.

However it’s an odd mix at times. The rear occupants are well catered for but the front two could be better looked after.

The ride, performance and responsiveness are good, especially for a van based vehicle. I would stay with the six seat version, as it provides the best balance between comfort and practicality.

Would I buy one if I was transporting people from hotels or doing day tours. Yes, but there is strong competition.

Would I buy one if I had a family. Well it’s no secret that a favourite of mine is the Kia Carnival. However it’s now a close competition and I hope to do a comparison soon.

Back to the question. It’s a little pricey and I would expect a few simple things added for the price but yes I would happily have one in the driveway and the kids would think it’s cool.

2019 Toyota Granvia.

What’s Good?

  • Space and comfort
  • Road presence
  • Surprisingly good ride/performance

What’s Not?

  • Driver’s seat lacks additional lumbar support and heating/cooling
  • No AWD version
  • No Head up Display

Also Look At

Model    Toyota Granvia VX

  • Model Price        From $74,990 MLP*
  • Engine                  2.8L 4 Cyl TDi
  • Drivetrain              RWD 6 speed Auto
  • Power                    130kW @ 3400rpm
  • Torque                  450Nm @ 1600-2400rpm
  • Safety                    5 Star ANCAP
  • CO2 Emissions      211 g/km
  • Economy ADR      8.0 L/100km
  • Tow Capacity        1500 kg
  • Tow Ball Rating    150 kg
  • Servicing              $240 per service for the first three years/60,000km
  • Warranty             5 Yr./ Unlimited km with 5 Yr. roadside assist

*MLP – Manufacturers List Price includes GST and LCT but excluding statutory charges, dealer costs and dealer delivery. See your dealer for RDAP. Does not include price of any options.

Overall Rating:    85/100

  • Behind the Wheel        8
  • Comfort                9
  • Equipment            8
  • Performance         8
  • Ride & Handling   8
  • Practicality            10
  • Fit for Purpose      9
  • Design/Style         9
  • Lifestyle                 8
  • Value for Money  8
Toyota Granvia VX
  • Rating
4.2

Summary

Granvia is aimed at high end hospitality, family and corporate buyers. With a choice of six or eight seat versions, the six seat version provides the best balance between room, luxury and practicality. Eight-seater models add a fourth-row, two-seat 60/40-split bench.

“Whether you are in need of a five-star hotel shuttle, corporate transport for senior executives or just a large luxury family wagon, the new Granvia fits the bill,” Mr Hanley said.

My partner absolutely refused to sit in the front seat. She sat in the second row every time, had the ottoman out and somehow indulged her fantasy of being a famous star being chauffeured around. That’s the purpose of the vehicle.

About Rob Fraser 1471 Articles
Rob Fraser – General dogsbody & Director Rob is the founder of the business. He constantly mutters something about way too many red wines one evening being to blame. Often known for taking the 4WD in the driveway over the sports car, he has travelled pretty much everywhere in Australia and when he is bored goes for a drive. He first learned to drive on the farm in a left hand drive WW11 Jeep when he was 11, and was hooked on 4WDriving way back then. In addition to 4WD he is an avid motoring enthusiast and has maintained a strong interest in the industry ever since his teens. He has owned way too many cars in his time as well. Having previously lived at the top of corporate life he retired in 2000 and hasn’t put a suit and tie on since. Cars are his passion so why not have a business doing what you love he figures. He has towed either a caravan or camper trailer to most parts of Australia, has run guided tours for camper trailers’ and instructed drivers in off road towing.