As it turned out, we’ll be seeing Toyota’s new super supermini at the 2017 Geneva Motor Show in March. It’s time we all get to meet the new Toyota Yaris GRMN – a superhot hatch that is twice as powerful as a typical Toyota Yaris.
As early as December 2016, Toyota has released a sketch image teasing a hot Yaris supermini that builds on the carmaker’s experience and expertise gained from its World Rally Championship stint. Considering that Toyota announced in November that a number of performance versions of its vehicles would bear the name of its factory race team – Gazoo Racing – this hot Toyota Yaris would carry the team’s moniker or something similar. It was then thought that the performance version of the Toyota Yaris would be powered by a 1.6-liter, four-cylinder, turbocharged engine similar to the powerplant found in the 380-hp Yaris WRC.
Seeing as how the WRC version of the Toyota Yaris made its debut at the Monte Carlo Rally – in which Toyota Gazoo driver Jari-Matti Latvala finished second overall – it was widely expected that the carmaker would unveil the performance variant of the supermini at the Geneva Motor Show in March. Toyota had also said that the Gazoo version of the Toyota Yaris would be powered by an engine that develops more than 210 hp.
Things are becoming clearer for the Gazoo version of the Toyota Yaris as the 2017 Geneva Motor Show approaches. Just recently, Toyota revealed the very name of this performance variant, as well as the powerplant that will serve as its core. The Japanese carmaker dubbed this super version of the supermini as the Toyota Yaris GRMN. Not Gazoo? It is still Gazoo, since GRMN is an abbreviation that stands for “Gazoo Racing Masters of the Nurburging.” Gazoo Racing is currently selling limited numbers of tuned GRMN and G’s models in Japan.
Initially, we thought that the Yaris GRMN was to be powered by the detuned version of the 1.6-liter, four-cylinder, turbocharged engine that powers the Yaris WRC. This WRC engine delivers more than 380 hp of output and more than 425 Nm of torque – sent to all wheels through a six-speed sequential transmission. A detuned version would have delivered around 210 hp, thereby bridging the gap between the Yaris WRC and a typical Yaris. Powering a typical Toyota Yaris is a new 1.5-liter engine that could develop 108 hp (110 PS) of max output and 136 Nm (100 lb.-ft.) of peak torque available at 4,400 rpm.
However, according to a recent Toyota press release that provides details of the new Toyota i-TRIL Concept, the new Toyota Yaris GRMN will be powered by a supercharged 1.8-liter powerplant that could deliver over 210 hp, which is enough to compete against the Volkswagen Polo GTI and the Ford Fiesta ST.