Toyota GR Corolla Hot Hatch Not Happening Anytime Soon
Despite earlier rumors, a Toyota Corolla hot hatch now might not happen. There are “no plans at this stage for that car, the GR Corolla,” Sean Hanley, Toyota Australia’s VP of sales and marketing, said, according to Motoring. “So we would never rule it out, but we don’t have any announcements to make on Corolla GR.”
A recently as February 2019, a performance version of the Corolla was in the cards. At that time, Toyota Deputy Chief Designer Toshio Kanei told a Dutch publication that the model was in early development within the Toyota Gazoo Racing division. He hinted at the vehicle using a turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine.
Toyota isn’t abandoning hot hatches, but it’s preparing them in a smaller footprint than the Corolla. The company is already teasing the debut of the Yaris GR-4 at the Rally Australia on November 17. There aren’t many details about it yet, but the launch location suggests a tie to the WRC car. Powertrain details aren’t yet available, but the rally car packs a turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder.
Using the Yaris as the basis for its hot hatch is bad news for Americans, though. The version in Europe rides on Toyota’s TGNA platform, but the one in the U.S has a close tie to the Mazda2. This makes it unlikely that any of the meaner models make it to this continent.
While it doesn’t have any more performance than the standard version, Toyota gives the Corolla Hatchback in America a sharper look by introducing the Nightshade Edition with black exterior trim and matching 18-inch wheels.