March 24, 2020

2011 Toyota Rukus Review

2011 Toyota Rukus Review

Joel Helmes drives and reviews the Toyota Rukus.

2011 Toyota Rukus Review
2011 Toyota Rukus Review.

Huey Lewis famously sang “It’s hip to be square” but I’m not sure that the Rukus is as hip as it is square.

That’s not to say that it’s not a fairly enjoyable, well-built car.

The logical place to start with a look at the Toyota Rukus is on the outside, it’s a design which certainly has a habit of polarizing opinions.

I don’t consider it a pretty car, nor is it really sporty, tough or even subtle, but it is an individual and it certainly does turn heads and get attention.

Be prepared however, you will probably get a few smarty pants poking fun of it and comparing it in looks to a London taxi or a fridge!

The Rukus is actually deceptively large, when parked next to a RAV4 you can see in terms of roofline and overall dimensions that it’s about the same size as the small SUV and this leads to a very pleasing amount of interior space.

Headroom, legroom, boot space - it’s all very generous.

Staying inside the Rukus, as you would expect from Toyota everything is where it should be, it has a quality feel and the seats are nice and comfy too.

2011 Toyota Rukus Review
2011 Toyota Rukus Review.

One thing I would say that for what is a fairly “funky” car on the outside the interior is probably a little boring. Aside from the speedometer and other gauges being located on the centre of the dashboard, really it’s about as conservative as a Corolla.

One thing that’s not conservative is the power-to-weight ratio. Thankfully the Rukus delivers plenty of power and torque thanks to the big 2.4 litre petrol engine under the bonnet.

This is the same engine used in the much bigger Camry and with 123kW and 224Nm it really moves the little Rukus around quite nicely.

Fuel consumption is good – official figures state a combined 8.8 and that’s about spot on with what I achieved.

Interestingly, the Rukus is available only with Toyota’s four speed auto gearbox.

On road it handles really well, feels much more sure footed than the comparable Kia Soul and overall is a nice easy car to get around in, oh and don’t worry, it’s a lot more straight down the line than what the name and styling may suggest!

The Toyota Rukus range starts from $27,490.

2011 Toyota Rukus Review
2011 Toyota Rukus Review.


Engine: 2.4 litre petrol producing 123kW and 224Nm

Transmission: Four-speed automatic

Safety: Not tested

Warranty: 3yrs/100,000kms

Origin: Japan

Price: From $27,490

About Joel Helmes 3208 Articles
Joel is the founder and CEO of Behind the Wheel. Joel has a background as a radio broadcaster with on-air roles at 4BC, 4KQ, 2KY, 2LT and 2UE amongst others, as well as a news editor and program director.Joel’s relationship with cars stems back to his early childhood learning to change oil and brakes with his father and uncle. This continued on into his driving years owning an assorted collection of cars.

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