New paint is just the tip of the iceberg for the new top-spec GR Corolla.
Toyota seems to have had a change of heart regarding the GR Corolla Circuit Edition, which it previously said would only be built for one model year. Instead, the Circuit Edition will return for 2024, and we couldn't be happier. The 1,500 Circuit Editions built for the 2023 model year simply weren't enough, leading to absolute dealer markup chaos.
But the Circuit Edition is not carried over as is. Toyota is adding Blue Flame (pictured here) and Ice Cap to the color palette, and it gets 18-inch forged-aluminum BBS wheels, similar to those bolted to the Morizo Edition. And, if you opt for a Blue Flame Circuit Edition, you'll also get black side rocker graphics running up to the stamped GR logo, while the interior has blue stitching and accents and a JBL Premium audio system.
The press materials don't mention any limited production run, so we're guessing the Circuit Edition may just be part of the range from now on, correlating with Toyota's promise that it will increase GR Corolla production to satisfy the insane demand.
While there are some changes for the new year, a lot carries over unchanged, like the vented bulge hood, GR mesh gloss-black grille with functional brake ducts, and the now-famous LED headlights. At the rear, it comes with a gloss-black rear spoiler, triple exhaust, and a functional diffuser. Importantly, there's a forged carbon fiber roof.
Not content with the already stellar aerodynamic properties, the engineers at Gazoo Racing redesigned the front aeroduct and airflow outlets and added aluminum sheets to the front and rear bumpers, applicable on other GR Corolla models too.
Toyota's magical turbocharged 1.6-liter three-cylinder engine is carried over, producing 300 horsepower at 6,500 rpm and 273 lb-ft between 3,300 and 5,500 rpm. As the car gods intended, it's only available with a six-speed manual (with rev-matching).
Toyota's GR-Four all-wheel drive system is standard, and you can split the power via the driving modes. The default split is 60:40, but additional modes switch to 50:50 for track driving and a lovely rear-biased 30:70 for fun jaunts on bendy roads.
To make the driving experience even more magical, the Circuit Edition comes standard with Torsen limited-slip differentials front and rear, four-piston brake calipers in the front and two-piston at the rear, and a set of Michelin Pilot Sport 4s.
Last year Toyota confirmed that more special edition GR Corollas are coming, and while we don't have a replacement for the Morizo Edition, we are seeing special edition models across the GR lineup, including a 45th Anniversary Edition Supra and a GR86 Trueno Edition. Toyota has a habit of making one-year-only specials, which is likely why the Circuit was originally only supposed to be around for one year.
Is the Circuit Edition the special GR Corolla for this year, or does Toyota have something more Morizo-like up its sleeve? Only time will tell.
The 2024 GR Corolla Circuit Edition returns this coming winter. Pricing and details about the rest of the GR Corolla range will be announced later.