The first reviews of the exciting little 2020 Toyota GR Yaris are out and it seems like the car manufacturer has created a very good hot hatch.
Following on from the positive reception that the Toyota Yaris GRMN enjoyed a couple of years ago, Toyota decided to take things up a notch for its next hot hatch, based around the latest-generation Yaris.
Sitting beneath the hood of the GR Yaris is a turbocharged 1.6-liter three-cylinder engine. Toyota is keeping final figures under wraps for the moment but says it pumps out more than 247 hp and 258 lb-ft (350 Nm), serious figures for an engine so small and a car so compact.
Like many other hot hatches, Toyota could have easily mated this three-cylinder engine up to a front-wheel drive system. It didn’t and instead, the GR Yaris features a trick all-wheel drive system.
Three driving modes are offered for the all-wheel drive system. In Normal mode, power is split 60:40 front-to-rear while in Sport Mode, that changes to 30:70 front-to-rear. In Track Mode, it sits at 50:50. Should drivers want the ultimate in performance, they will be able to option both front and rear limited-slip differentials.
Both of the reviewers in these videos appear very impressed with what Toyota has created and excitingly, the GR Yaris isn’t the end of Toyota’s performance car ambitions. In fact, much like Hyundai with its N division, Toyota is planning a fleet of GR-badged performance vehicles based around some of its most popular vehicles.
Electric powertrains are becoming more and more common but the GR Yaris shows the traditional performance car still has a lot of life left.