Toyota GR Yaris comes with 257 horsepower

Ruben Fields
January 13, 2020

Only the Honda Civic Type R has a better power-to-weight ratio among the current crop of hot hatches (see our list below). It was then quickly followed by a leak which apparently showed the hot hatch being tested somewhere in Australia.

Learning from competing in the WRC, Toyota developed the GR Yaris together with Tommi Makinen Racing (5) from the ground up to be a WRC victor, as an original model of TOYOTA GAZOO Racing's sports auto lineup. In a reference to its illustrious predecessor and its all-wheel drive technology, the GR Yaris features a GR-FOUR logo on its tailgate. Brakes are by 356mm disc at the front, 297mm behind.

By combining the GA-B front end, which debuted in the new-generation Yaris, with the rear of the GA-C architecture. The GR Yaris is a three-door body style made of carbon fiber polymer and aluminum to maintain weight. In sum, "The GR Yaris is based on the European-spec Yaris and there is no plan to offer that vehicle here in the United States", a Toyota representative told Roadshow. Combined with data from WRC and technical know-how from Gazoo Racing and TMR, Toyota claims that the hatchback wil deliver a "high level of dynamic performance". In addition to the high-speed combustion of a TNGA engine, by increasing engine revolutions through the use of lightweight moving parts, and by optimizing the turbocharger and other elements of the air intake and exhaust system, efforts were made to achieve the world's highest maximum output for a three-cylinder engine (7) of 200 kW (272 PS), as well as to achieve continuous provision of abundant torque over a wide range of engine speeds. Instead, it has a 1.6-liter inline-three. This three-cylinder must be turned up and excited.

Oh, and did we fail to mention the engine can rev to 7,000 rpm? And all the while, the middle-man between the AWD and the engine is a six-speed manual gearbox.

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To help meet its performance goals for the GR Yaris, Toyota has established a new production facility at its Motomachi factory with a line dedicated to manufacturing GR sports cars. The GR FOUR system is also considerably lighter in weight. And if any of you want to kick it up a notch, Toyota will even sell a Circuit Pack that adds a limited-slip differential on both axles.

This Yaris' drivetrain behaviour can be altered through a 4WD mode dial switch within the cabin, selecting between a 60:40 front/rear split in Normal mode, a 30:70 split in Sport mode, or the 50:50 split in Track mode to maximise precision driving potential.

Plenty of GR badges scattered around the cabin. So, yes, this can be a hot hatch with nearly rear-wheel drive with three driver-controlled settings to divide the balance accordingly.

There's no word on worldwide pricing just yet, but the RZ First Edition in Japan comes in at the equivalent of $36,000 - and is available to order now.

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