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2024 Toyota bZ4x

a white Toyota bZ4x outside a fancy house

An all-around great EV for all-around(-town) driving

The bZ4x is marketed as a midsized, or maybe compact, SUV EV - a SUEV I suppose… And you know what, it’s decently sized - ready for pretty much anything you throw at it.

By J-F Wright

Thu, Feb 29, 2024 09:04 PM PST

Images courtesy Toyota.

The Toyota bZ4X is not a hybrid when it comes to its engine, but it kinda is when it comes to where this EV fits in. It's not quite an SUV (in my opinion it's not big enough), but it's not a sedan either. As a hatchback it straddles the sedan-SUV line perfectly and could be a great car for a myriad of different people with vastly different needs. Or, of course, the buyer with vastly different needs depending on their plans for the day.


The interior of the Toyota bZ4x is just like you would expect - very Toyotaesque. That’s not a bad thing in any way, it’s a proven and trusted interior design and layout that has worked for ages and is intuitive for most. Is it luxury-a-la-Lexus? No, but the bZ4x doesn’t carry a Lexus sticker price either. For the money - $52,588 as tested - the our Toyota bZ4x Limited is well-appointed.

interior of the 2024 Toyota bZ4x
Classy Toyota layout of the bZ4X cockpit.

An interesting and notable feature - interior feature, that is - is the little compartment meant to house your cellphone. I doubt that anyone ever requested a closable little box for the phone, but here it is. This is where you’ll find the wireless charger located as well.

Another noteworthy detail is the fact that the gear selector knob is just as close to the passenger as it is to the driver. The proximity to the passenger seat, and the fact that it looks a lot like an infotainment knob, means that it can definitely be mistaken as something the passenger should fiddle with.

front seats in the Toyota bZ4x
Front seats are comfrotable without stealing too much of space from the rear seats.

Imagine this hypothetical scenario: Kids in the back seat are making lots of noise - too much! - and the front passenger wants to quickly turn down the music so they can whip around and yell at ‘em. (Not that that would ever happen, but hypothetically.) The first thing the from passenger is going to reach for is that knob in the middle - a.k.a. the gear selector. Hopefully the transmission knows what’s good for it and won’t let anything really stupid happen.

The steering wheel has a classic Toyota look with buttons to access pretty much anything you need. The right side is dedicated mainly to the safety and convenience features - like the settings for the dynamic cruise control and the lane keep assist.

rear seat center console of the Toyota bZ4x
The luxury of a heated seat is included for the rear seat passengers

Our test vehicle - a Limited - comes with the Limited Weather Package which, apart from the classic heated seats throughout the cabin, includes something very new to me: Front radiant foot-and-leg heater. I guess this means that instead of blowing warm air it is heating my feet and legs using radiant heat. With electric vehicles come new and interesting interior features as well.

Pretty much any way I sit in the driver’s seat the top of the steering wheel is obscuring my view of the instrument cluster. I had to lower the steering wheel below what I thought was reasonable, just to make it work.

The two-window sunroof adds some space to the interior. It’s actually not two separate windows - it’s just one - but there’s a crossbar that makes it look like it’s two separate parts.

rear trunk space in the Toyota bZ4x
Fold down the rear seats and you suddenly have a lot of space to haul the gear needed for your next adventure.

The front seats in the 2024 Toyota bZ4X are comfortable and lack those forward-pushing headrests that have somehow become the norm in Toyotas. Maybe Toyota got the memo - we don’t want to sit with our head pushed forward, just to be in a safer position if we were to be hit from behind. Hopefully that era was a short-lived one, and over.

The rear seat has a surprising amount of legroom. There’s space for two adults to sit back there, maybe even on longer trips. I guess you can always squeeze in a third butt on the middle seat, but it better be a small one.

The rear passengers, just like the front occupants, have a bunch of outlets to charge their devices. Furthermore, for some extra comfort, the rear seats are also heated. As a bonus, the rear seat of the bZ4X has plenty of head space in the rear seat - even for me, and I’m 6 feet tall.

steering wheel and dash in the Toyota bZ4x
The steering wheel seemed to always be blocking my view of the speedometer. A truthful excuse that no police will accept.

In my opinion this is a hatchback - I don’t care that Toyota wants to call it a compact SUV or a crossover. It doesn’t look like anything other than a hatchback, which in my mind is a good thing. The rear seats fold (almost) flat making way for all kinds of space for hauling stuff instead of people. This makes the bZ4x a great option for the active couple - sometimes there are friends in the back seat, but sometimes there’s a bunch of gear for whatever activity they’re off to (active, young, couples are always heading off to something, aren’t they?).

Range (Anxiety)

We’re testing this Toyota bZ4X in cold temperatures - we’re in Colorado in January. Winters here are a tad colder than some other places, definitely compared to Southern California. We knew that the temperature would negatively effect the range, but we weren’t ready for how much of an effect it would have.

The cold weather has a significant impact on the driving range of the Toyota bZ4X. When the Toyota bZ4X is charged up to 100% it says that we still only have 152 miles of range! That’s too low - not just in my opinion, but to make anyone feel comfortable taking the bZ4x to anywhere outside of town. The low (winter) range unfortunately makes the Toyota bZ4x an around-town vehicle.

It’s supposed to get over 200 miles, but in these temperatures it’s not close to anywhere near that. If I turn off the climate control, the heater in the seats, any other warming features, and pretty much anything else that may or may not be stealing power from our battery the range jumps up to 192 miles with 100% charge. But now I’m cold…

a white Toyota bZ4x seen from the side
The exterior of the Toyota bZ4x is sending me mixed signals. SUV? capable off-road? hathback? It turns out the bZ4x has a bunch of tricks up its sleeve.

Obviously, this is not a problem specific to Toyota EVs, but it is something to note for those who live in colder climates and are considering an electric vehicle.

The Toyota bZ4x comes with a level one charging cord, which means you can hook it up to a household outlet if you have access to one where you park.

It takes an insanely long time to charge the battery all the way up when you’re going through a household outlet - 20 or 30 hours for a full charge are not unheard of. Setting this up correctly would entail installing a “real” charger in your garage, so that you can get charged up relatively fast - at least a whole lot faster than the 30 hours I was getting.

Safety & Convenience

The 2024 Toyota bZ4x comes with the Toyota Safety Sense 3.0 - the latest iteration of the Toyota safety and convenience package. Included is a pre-collision system with pedestrian detection, full-speed-range dynamic radar cruise control, lane departure alert with steering assist, lane tracing assist, and the automatic high-beams, all of which come in pretty handy during pretty much any type of driving.

All in all I’m always very impressed by the Toyota safety system(s). The 3.0 - being the latest iteration - definitely carries its own. Even though it won’t really allow you to let go of the steering wheel entirely (it’ll yell at you for trying), the bZ4x is almost self-driving - especially on the highway.

exterior of the Toyota bZ4x
It's both classy-looking and capable-looking, the Toyota bZ4x

Will it lose track on a curvy road? Yes, but if you’re cruising down the freeway, it’ll actually do a really good job keeping you in your lane and cruising along at a stable speed. Am I saying you should let the Toyota drive by itself? No, not even Toyota says that.

Power & Performance

There’s a button to toggle on and off the one-pedal driving mode, a great button for when you just don’t want to be bothered by the braking when you let go of the accelerator. But, one might add, it’s really quick getting used to one-foot driving, give it a day and you’ll save years before you need to replace your brake pads.

The Toyota bZ4x comes with an all-wheel-drive system - and with the Toyota X-mode, more on that shortly. First I’ll mention that it’s got dual electric motors with 80 kW each, totaling 214 system horsepower. Even though I’m mainly tooling around in ECO-mode, the engine(s) feel more than powerful enough.

front of the Toyota bZ4x
The front of the Toyota bZ4x has a similar look as its sister, the Prius, albeit the bZ4x looks more beefy.

With a flick of a button you can turn on X-mode which sets the car up for driving in snow and/or dirt, for example. Hit the button again and you get the “deep snow and mud”-setting which also turns off your anti-skid system, your pre-collision brake system, and a bunch of the other safety systems. These X-mode modes are really only supposed to be used if you’re actually driving in deep mud and/or snow.

The 214 total system horsepower gives this Toyota a bit of an extra kick. Is it stupid fast? No. But it definitely will get going in a real hurry… As with all electric vehicles, there’s a lot of torque from the get-go, meaning that we can go from zero to a bunch a whole lot faster than most other everyday vehicles.


20-inch wheels come with the limited package, as do the multi-LED projector headlights and LED daytime running lights - all of which add an extra bit of flare to the Toyota bZ4X.

An interesting exterior feature - adds an extra $200 - is the split rear spoiler at the far back of the roofline. It kind of gives the rear of this Toyota two horns - devils horns? They aren’t as obtrusive as the one on the Lexus that we had a while ago, but still definitely there.

Also extra - at $425 and $500 respectively - are the options “Special Color” and “Two-Tone Paint. Worth an extra thousand dollars? Maybe… It sure adds a nice dynamism to the vehicle.

exterior of the bZ4x
The bZ4x seems to fit in anywhere - you can park it outside your luxury house, but also drive it through dirt with your climbing gear in the back.

The front facia of the 2024 Toyota bZ4x has a bit of an electric car feeling to it - it’s missing a front air intake and grill. Other than that it won’t stick out as an EV, which is often the case with the very tech-heavy EVs.

Seen from the side the bZ4x does not look huge - especially not compared to the other vehicles on our roads. I actually think this is mainly due to the design, though. It’s about as long as my neighbor’s Volvo XC90 (I’m often parked next to her Volvo), but it’s not quite as tall. The XC90 looks a lot bigger when seen separately, but up close and next to each other they aren’t all that different.


The 2024 Toyota bZ4X is a great all-around (town) car. The limited range is, well, quite limiting as soon as you want to plan any longer trips. I’m not saying it’s not possible, but there’s a whole lot more planning that goes into taking an EV with a range of less than 200 miles on a roadtrip compared to an EV with over 300 miles. Other than the range-issue - which in all honesty is not an issue for the daily driving patterns of pretty much everyone - the 2024 Toyota bZ4X is quite the crossover.. I mean hatchback!

About The Author

J-F Wright's profile picture

J-F Wright

John-Fredrik Wright was born in Sweden, but raised on both sides of the Atlantic. His experience in the automotive industry starts with a summer-job as a host at Volkswagen’s premier showroom in Stockholm. Later, he worked as an instructor at Swedish Active Driving, teaching safe driving (among other things the renowned "elk-avoidance maneuver") and advanced driving techniques.

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