Toyota has revealed the GR Yaris at this years Tokyo Auto Salon, and to say the least I am intrigued. The car features a 268 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque making turbocharged 1.6 liter inline three cylinder engine. These stats make it the most powerful three cylinder engine in the world! Toyota claims the car will do 0-62 MPH in 5.5 Seconds. The car is also clearly a drivers car as it comes with a six speed manual transmission that is matched to an all wheel drive system that uses a multi plate clutch center differential to divvy up the power between the front and rear. The system comes with three settings, Normal, Sport and Track. The default split is 60/40 between the front and rear, activating the Sport setting will set up 30/70 and Track will make an even 50/50. Both ends of the car feature mechanical Torsen-type limited slip differentials.
The chassis has seen a number of upgrades, too. The front suspension continues to use MacPherson struts, but the rear has been changed to a double-wishbone independent design. The front brakes now have 14-inch slotted rotors and four-piston calipers, and the rear brakes have 12-inch rotors clamped by two-piston calipers. Weight is kept to 2,822 pounds through the use of aluminum doors, hatchback, hood and a carbon fiber roof. One other cool note about the GR Yaris is that, while its production will play a role in the homologation process for a rally car, it’s also a result of Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda’s desire for such a car. According to Toyota, he had a chance to drive a WRC car with Tommi Makinen Racing and enjoyed it so much he wanted Toyota to build a production car with similar characteristics, and he kicked off the project in 2016. Apparently Toyoda-san will also be the one to approve the final tuning of the car.
That is one super cool Yaris (never thought I would say/type that). Are you as excited about it as I am? Well, don’t be…this is another one of those cars that will most likely never make it to the USA. It is most likely too expensive to gain an audience in the USA, plus it’s being built on a special assembly line since it has so many changes over a base model Yaris. On top of all that, the Yaris that it is being based off of isn’t offered in the USA. This is a real bummer as I feel that this thing would be a blast to drive!