Listening to demands for “compact cars with minivan-like features,” Toyota unleashed two truly mini minivans upon the Japanese public, with the aim of becoming the leader in that segment. But wait what they called the thing.
Powered by either a 1.3 liter or 1.5 liter engine, both mated to Toyota’s Super CVT-I, the mini minivans come with a “large, passenger-side remote-controlled sliding door. The door can be opened and closed using a wireless key or by the touch of a button from the driver or rear seats.” Apparently, Toyota wants to ncroach on Honda’s NBOX.
The two minivans are actually one. Same body, same engine, trim, even price. What is different are the names and the channel. One minivan, called “Porte” is sold through “Toyota” and “Toyopet” dealers, the other, called “Spade” is available at through “Toyota Corolla” and “Netz” dealers.
Yes, they called it a spade. Toyota helpfully supplies the information that Porte is derived “from the French word for door”, whereas “spade” was “chosen as it contains portions of the words space and wide, key elements in the vehicle’s design, and also because it is the strongest suit in a deck of cards.”