Because the world could always use more speedy hatchbacks.
Toyota’s Tetsuya Tada, the man in charge of the company’s sports cars, is one incredible interviewee. After talking with Motoring about the new Supra he dished to the outlet about a new hot hatch from the brand. That would be a Yaris, folks. Yup, the diminutive hatchback could be getting some fun injected into it to promote the return of Toyota to the World Rally Championship (WRC). In speaking with Motoring, Tada spilled the beans on an in-house Yaris tune himself.
"We need a real hot hatch for the brand, because we are returning to WRC in 2017. What do you think of the Yaris?" Now the Yaris isn’t much in stock form, but there’s a special version available only in Japan that’s a little more fun. It has a turbocharged 1.4-liter inline-four that spits out 150 horsepower and 152 lb-ft of torque. A manual transmission is standard for added fun. Overall the beefy Yaris, known as the Yaris GRMN Turbo, looks pretty good but that engine is still woefully underpowered. Tada has driven the Fiesta ST and told Motoring that he is setting his sights on it in terms of performance. "I think so –– and Polo GTI also. We must beat it. I will make a competitive hot hatch".
He also said the hatchback will use a big turbo which should help it out-muscle the 197 horsepower Fiesta ST. Unfortunately all-wheel drive seems are out of the picture for now but cross your fingers and stay hopeful. Another interesting tidbit from this report is that Toyota is considering a new sub-brand for its future performance cars. Toyota Racing Development (TRD) apparently doesn’t pack enough punch, with Tada saying simply: “It’s not powerful enough.”