The waiting is over! The new Toyota GR Yaris has been revealed at the annual Tokyo Auto Salon in Japan.
A pure performance car, our rally-inspired Toyota GR Yaris offers unique styling, a three-door body shell and a powerful 257bhp, 1.6-litre turbocharged 3-cylinder engine.
With a six-speed manual gearbox and advanced four-wheel drive chassis, the car is the product of the design and engineering skills of Toyota Gazoo Racing and Tommi Mäkinen Racing, and is a new top-of-the-range model with the heart and soul of a rally car.
Scheduled for launch in the second half of 2020 the new Toyota GR Yaris follows GR Supra as our second global GR model.
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All the credentials are there for delivering exhilarating performance for the road
Just as the Celica GT-Four was the road-going equivalent of our Group A Celica rally cars in the Nineties, the GR Yaris serves as the official homologation model for the development of the next Yaris WRC car. In fact, in reference to its illustrious predecessors and their all-wheel drive technology, the GR Yaris features a GR-Four logo on the tailgate.
As this post will explain, every aspect of the car has a performance focus. All the credentials are there for competition success and for delivering exhilarating performance as a super-hot hatch for the road.
Toyota GR Yaris: development
The WRC-skilled designers and engineers at Tommi Mäkinen Racing focused on perfecting the three key performance-enhancing areas of aerodynamics, weight and weight distribution.
A lower roofline improves the car’s ability to cut through the air. Meanwhile, positioning the new 1.6-litre turbocharged engine further towards the centre of the car and locating the battery in the boot optimises chassis balance for improved handling, stability and responsiveness. Reinforcements beneath the side members ensure optimal suspension performance.
The three-door bodyshell is made from lightweight materials including compression moulded carbon fibre polymer, while aluminium is used for the bonnet, doors and tailgate. As a result, the GR Yaris weighs 1,280kg and has a power-to-weight ratio of 5.0kg per bhp.
Learn more: Road test reviews of GR Yaris prototypes
Toyota GR Yaris: design
The new GR Yaris is unique among its siblings in being built with a three-door body. The roof is lowered by 91mm and the doors are frameless, which gives the car the silhouette of a coupe.
At the front the grille design and spoiler express the express the car’s authentic GR status, while at the rear the wide stance and muscular wings accommodate 18-inch alloy wheels.
Toyota GR Yaris: all-new 1.6-litre turbo engine
The engine in the GR Yaris is an all-new, 1,618cc three-cylinder turbocharged unit with double overhead cams and four valves per cylinder. It features a single-scroll ball-bearing turbo and is equipped with motorsport technologies to maximise performance. These include multi-oil jet piston cooling, large diameter exhaust valves and a part-machined intake port. The compact and lightweight engine is matched to a six-speed manual transmission, engineered to accommodate high levels of torque.
The light weight of the GR Yaris allied to this engine helps the car deliver 0-62mph acceleration in less than 5.5 seconds and an electronically limited top speed of 143mph.
Toyota GR Yaris: GR-Four all-wheel drive system
A key element of the driving performance of the GR Yaris is its new GR-Four all-wheel drive system, which governs torque distribution to each wheel through a high-response coupling.
This simple and lightweight system uses different gear ratios for each axle and allows a theoretical range of front/rear torque balance from 100:0 (full front-wheel drive) to 0:100 (full rear-wheel drive). Such flexibility gives a performance advantage over on-demand all-wheel drive systems with twin-couplings and permanent systems with a centre differential.
The driver can adjust four-wheel drive performance to suit their preference or driving situation using a 4WD mode dial. Normal mode distributes torque in a 60:40 split between front and rear; Sport mode shifts the balance rearward with 30:70 distribution; while Track mode equalises the torque at 50:50 for fast, competitive driving on circuits and special stages. In each mode, the torque balance is automatically adjusted in response to driver inputs, vehicle behaviour and road or track conditions.
An optional Circuit Pack with two Torsen limited-slip differentials can also be specified to manage the split between left- and right-side wheels for even greater control. Performance-tuned suspension and 18-inch forged alloy wheels with 225/40 Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tyres.
Toyota GR Yaris: dedicated platform and chassis
The GR Yaris has a new, dedicated platform that combines the front end of Toyota’s GA-B platform – debuting in the all-new Yaris model in 2020 – with the rear of the GA-C platform found in the Corolla and C-HR. This hybridisation allows for a new suspension design and accommodation of the GR-Four all-wheel drive system, while contributing to excellent stability and handling.
Where the standard new Yaris uses a torsion beam rear suspension, the GR Yaris has a more sophisticated double wishbone set-up optimised for performance. A MacPherson strut system is used at the front.
The performance braking system features large, 356mm grooved front discs with four-pot calipers together with 297mm ventilated rear discs with two-pot calipers. The set-up is engineered to cope with rigorous demands of high-speed track and special stage driving with high-level heat capacity.
Toyota GR Yaris: Motomachi production centre
Production of the new GR Yaris has been arranged on a new, dedicated line at our Motomachi plant. Instead of using a traditional conveyor system, the body and assembly lines comprise a number of different cells connected by automatic guided vehicles.
A large number of manual processes are required during production, for which Toyota employs a specialist team. The factory design and the talents of the workforce allow for high-precision assembly to levels that are hard to achieve on standard production lines.
Toyota GR Yaris Technical Specifications
|Type||In-line, 3 cylinders|
|Valve mechanism||DOHC 12-valve with VVT-i|
|Fuel system||D4S direct and indirect injection|
|Bore x stroke (mm)||87.5 x 89.7|
|Max. power (bhp/DIN hp/kW)||257/261/192|
|Max. torque (Nm)||360|
|Emissions level||Euro 6d temp|
|All-wheel drive system||GR-Four|
|Power-to-weight ratio (kg/bhp, kg/DIN hp, kg/kW)||5.0, 4.9, 6.7|
|Max. speed (mph)||143 (electronically limited)|
|Front suspension||MacPherson strut|
|Rear suspension||Double wishbone|
|Steering||Rack and pinion, electric power steering|
|Min. turning circle (m)||10.8|
|Front (diameter, mm)||Ventilated discs (356) with 4-pot fixed callipers|
|Rear (diameter, mm)||Ventilated discs (297) with 2-pot fixed callipers|
|Type||Dunlop SP Sport MAXX050
Michelin Pilot Sport 4s (option)
|DIMENSIONS & WEIGHT|
|Overall length (mm)||3,995|
|Overall width (mm)||1,805|
|Overall height (mm)||1,460|
|Front track (mm)||1,530|
|Rear track (mm)||1,560|
|Kerb weight (without driver, kg)||1,280|