We wouldn't say no to a Ford Focus RS rival from Toyota.
Last year, Toyota announced it will be spicing up some of its existing models with the help of its performance sub-brand, Gazoo Racing. It comprises of three tiers, with the entry-level GR Sport range, the mid-range GR, and the flagship GRMN. Currently, the only car to get the full fat GRMN treatment is the supercharged Yaris. Speaking to Motoring, Toyota Australia’s Sean Hanley hinted that the GR range could be expanded with a hotter version of the new-generation Toyota Corolla Hatchback.
“Absolutely I do,” he said when asked if a souped-up Corolla Hatchback could be successful in Australia. The senior executive added that it’s a matter of when, rather than if a Corolla Hatchback GR will arrive in Australia. While the Yaris GRMN isn’t available in Australia, Hanley conceded that “a really nice Corolla or other type of car” is likely to get the GR treatment. “If that opportunity arose through our Gazoo Racing development we would put our hand up for it,” he said. “I’d like to see it as soon as possible, but in the next three years I wouldn’t rule out the possibility or probability of something coming under the Gazoo Racing brand.”
Again, Hanley’s comments apply to the Australian market, so it could reach other markets even sooner. Should a Corolla Hatchback GR get the green light, expect it to be more powerful than the Yaris GRMN, which packs 209 horsepower and 184 pound-feet, and receive sportier body kit, stiffer suspension, bigger brakes, and a tweaked chassis. Packing a brand-new TNGA 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine and a six-speed manual gearbox, the 2019 Toyota Corolla Hatchback already has sporty attributes, so a hot hatch version is an exciting prospect. We certainly wouldn't say no to a Ford Focus RS rival from Toyota.