Daihatsu has been making brilliant little off-road vehicles for quite a while, and it shows in this generation Terios. The Diva is a 4×2 version with fancy leather seats, park control with camera, and a few other little extras.
So, what is a Terios? It is a smallish, high riding, tough, four door jeep type vehicle of the SUV ilk. Some are 4×4, others 4×2. It will be a great little car for 2 people to go to a games reserve or do an extended road trip in.
The 1.5 petrol engine produces power of 77kW @6000 and 140Nm @4400. Ground clearance is an excellent 205mm.
The seats and driving position in the Terios are just right. The leather seats in the Diva are extra comfortable and have orange stitching to look good as well. Everything has been kept simple and straightforward. Dials and switches are where they should be and function well.
The sound and Garmin navigation unit is neat and works well. It is also easy to use.
There is nothing fancy about the interior, but although plain the cabin is a pleasant place to be.
The boot is small for four people, but if you fold the back seats down two people can easily get all their camping gear in.
The Terios is very unassuming and plain, functional on the outside. It is what it is. The Diva model has swirly orange decals and badges to differentiate it from other models.
It is a good looking vehicle in an unassuming, balanced way.
The Terios drives more like a bakkie than a car. Its not unpleasant or harsh, it is just not refined.
Everything works well. The brakes do what they are supposed to, the steering has good feel and as long as you are not in a hurry it goes well.
Top usable, comfortable speed is around 110km/h, but she will go to 140 and can cruise at 120km/h. Acceleration is truck like. Still, I find the Diva comfortable and pleasant to drive.
The driving position lets one see all round and the height makes for superb visibility. The seats and steering are adjustable.
The good things
The build quality is excellent. This car will last a lifetime.
All round visibility is excellent. The cabin is very functional. It is a nice sized car, its got attitude, a great ride height and has personality.
The Terios is a tad noisy at speed, which in a Terios is anything above 100km/h. It sounds and handles like an off-road vehicle. A bit more sound proofing is needed.
It works quite hard at 120km/h but will cruise in fifth quite happily. 110km/h is the best cruising speed. If this car had a little turbo fitted it would be awesome. It just needs a little more grunt. Fuel consumption could be better.
It is one of those love it or hate it cars. I like them. They are honest little workhorses that should give years of hassle free motoring. There is also a long wheelbase version.
The Nissan Juke is better value for money if you do not need a 4×4. The Jimny is small but will go anywhere.
Nissan Juke – R203 925 to R261 925
Suzuki Jimny 1.3 4×4 – R 192 900
The top of the range model is the 4WD Manual off-road with 3yr / 75 000km Service Plan @ R274 995.
The warranty is 3 year / 100 000km.