Toyota Yaris modifications: New driver armrest, lights & more

I thought about addressing the issue by some DIY way.

BHPian ani_meher recently shared this with other enthusiasts.

I have a Yaris VX CVT 2019 model. Toyota later brought a refreshed model with some minor tweaks, but majority of the car is the same.

I love the car for multitude of reasons. The interior quality is good, you feel comfortable and reasonably luxurious once inside the cabin. The silence in the cabin because of the noise reducing glass is something to be experienced and not described. Often, I don't need any music inside the car because the external noise such as road and other vehicles is muted to a great extent. Even the IR glasses seem to help a lot, because I haven't felt the need for any illegal sunfilm yet. The ride too is supple, and eats up bad city roads well. The engine works well for my purpose that is driving safely from A to B. The paddle shifters help a lot in controlling the drive in Ghat sections.

But there are some key drawbacks, faced universally by Yaris owners. Not just in India, but even outside where the same model was sold under the name of Vios.

First, the atrocious centre table in the shape of an arm rest. It is absolutely ridiculous, and whoever designed it brings a great shame to car design.

Photo from official review:

I thought about addressing the issue by some DIY way. I found this parts diagram for the arm rest, which was surprisingly difficult to find. Hope someone has a use for this:

I removed the top part of the arm rest (wrapped in leather), and considered extending it by 6 inches. But I couldn't find any seat maker confident enough to take up the job. Their main objection was, such an extension would fall off once we keep our hand on top, no matter how much support we give by way of velcro. I didn't think so, but since no one was cooperating to experiment, I had to drop this idea.

Second, I found a YouTube video showing an installation of aftermarket part that moves the arm rest ahead.

I have been trying to establish a contact with those people since last year. Because of lockdown, there was no stock. Then recently, I once again tried to contact them. Getting some basic information about the product took a long time, because of sheer reluctance of the sellers to pick up the phone. Later, we resorted to whatsapp chat only. I was told that after paying 7500, they would ship the part to my home in Pune. In any other deal, I would have rethought the case just because of the lack of proper communication. But in this case, I took a leap of faith, and the part arrived at my home a week later.

The underbody is not pretty. The new part is a two piece part supposedly made by 'glass wool', as concluded by the accessory fitting shop. I have no way of confirming or denying this. Just that from the inside, it looks as if it was shaped rather than casted in plastic/fibre.

Yaris owners may recognize the reduction here. In stock arm rest, we can keep a mobile phone horizontally and still have some space left. In the new part, the mobile fits vertically only.

Photo of original part from official review:

New part:

I took it to a local accessory fitting shop, which took Rs 500 for fitting it. The fitment is straightforward, but needs some pulling of stock parts and enlarging the holes on the new parts, so I was more comfortable outsourcing it. Brave DIY'ers can do it themselves too. Here are some photos of the transplant process.

Here is the monstrosity in its glory, pushing the driver seat all the way to the front. Bravo to the designer!

The backside part is hooked on using clips, and needs a gentle pull. Later, you can remove the visible screws, and gently remove the arm rest. VX model has leather wrap around the hand break that too comes off with the arm rest part.

Here's the skeleton of the inside parts:

The new part is about the same length of the existing one. Just that it is designed with some common sense, with a straight back.

Side by side:

It required some figuring and fingering to fit the three chargers in the given holes. Here's how it looks like, once fitted. Finally my arm has a place to rest!

Even though the base is of the same length, just the angle of the part has freed up a lot of space at the rear.

A before and after photo:

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