The new Yaris GR-4 is set to debut at Rally Australia.
After years of pursuing volume sales above all else, Toyota has been on a bit of a performance bent lately, releasing not only sports cars like the Supra and 86, but TRD and Gazoo Racing versions of its standard models as well. And now, it seems, it has another in store... but sadly not for us.
One of the world's largest automakers, Toyota released this teaser image previewing a hot new version of the latest Yaris hatchback, to be rolled out as part of its expanding GR performance lineup. And it's set to debut soon on November 17 at Rally Australia.
The new hot hatch would ostensibly go up against other pocket rockets like the Ford Fiesta ST, Volkswagen Polo GTI, and Renault Clio RS. But like those models, we don't expect to see it offered in North America. Remember that the Yaris (pictured below), after all, is an entirely different model overseas to the Mazda2-based model we get over here. And while we could (theoretically) see a TRD or GR version of that model, this won't be it.
Market availability aside, what has us particularly intrigued by this teaser is the GR-4 label accompanying it. But we can only guess at what that number represents.
Four doors, perhaps? Four-wheel traction? Or maybe that this will be the fourth GR model released so far, following the GR Supra, the outgoing Yaris GRMN (pictured, bottom), and the more tepid Yaris GR Sport. Both those last two were based on the previous-generation hatchback (and inspired by Toyota's World Rally Championship program). But where the GRMN version packed a supercharged engine good for 212 horsepower, the GR Sport stuck with the standard model's hybrid powertrain, with only suspension and cosmetic upgrades to set it apart. We're hopeful that the new Yaris GR (or whatever it's ultimately called) will be closer to the outgoing Yaris GRMN, but one way or another, we won't go looking for it at dealers here in America.