The powerful 1.6-liter turbocharged inline-three and innovative all-wheel drive system of the Toyota GR Yaris have been put to better use, driving the brand new Toyota GR Corolla that has just been officially unveiled.
Its ‘G16E-GTS’ engine is good for 295bhp, more than 257bhp in GR Yaris. This is much higher than the 268bhp of the previous teaser which was indicated, and although we do not yet have performance statistics, this output should be enough to give the heavy Corolla the right to boast 0-62mph speeds over its younger siblings. Meanwhile the torque stands at 273lb ft.
Another unexpected feature is a six-speed manual gearbox with a rev-matching feature. It was assumed that the GR Corolla would only be automatic.
This transmission feeds a GR-four-branded all-wheel drive system without center difference. Instead, it uses a clutch pack between the prop shaft and the rear differential. Go for the circuit version, and the torsion limited-slip differentials go back and forth as standard.
Along with the LSD (available in core grade vehicles as part of the performance package), the circuit version includes a fake carbon fiber roof, a vented bonnet, a different rear spoiler, suede-trimmed seats and a gear shift knob ‘Morizo’ – Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda’s driving personality. It will only be available during the GR Corolla launch year.
Just like in the GR Yaris, the GR Corolla GR-Four system is able to strongly bias the rear wheel with 30/70 torque split in Sport mode. Normal mode is 70/30, and circuit is 50/50
The front and rear wheel arches of the bodywork are widened, with 18-inch multispoke wheels entering each corner wrapped in 235mm-wide Michelin Pilot Sport 4 tires. A much larger grille is open to the front than is seen in a standard Corolla, surrounded by a large duct. The most unusual feature is the back – a triple exhaust with a different shaped central exit. Toyota says the design is key to increasing the power of the G16E-GTS engine to reduce back-pressure.
In addition to the wider tires, the GR Corolla gets retuned springs, dampers and anti-roll bars. Slower things are a four-piston caliper with a 355mm slotted disc at the front, two piston calipers at the rear, and a 300mm rotor.
Inside, you’ll find a GR-specific 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster that shows things like driving mode, turbo boost pressure and gear position. There is also a short-throw manual gear-lever and an ‘old’ mechanical handbrake. Infotainment Duty has an eight-inch touchscreen that is compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
The Toyota GR Corolla will not be coming to the UK, sadly, a spokesman for Toyota GB has confirmed. One reason for this may be Gaju Racing’s ‘Power of Three’ policy, in which only three GR models are sold in a single market at the same time. In Europe, we already have three – the GR Yaris, the GR Supra and the new GR86. In North America, the lack of GR yaris provides a ‘space’ for heating corolla.
There has been no high-powered Toyota Corolla since the early 2000s T-Sport, which delivered 189bhp of power from its supercharged 1.8-liter engine, so the promise of a new GR Corolla is a bold move from Toyota, especially to its direct rivals. The range will range from the Volkswagen Golf R to the new Honda Civic Type R in the United States.
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