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New Toyota Yaris GR 2021 pricing confirmed for NZ... and it's A LOT: Fire-breathing hot hatch to sit well above Volkswagen Polo GTI and Ford Fiesta ST

The Toyota Yaris GR will sit above its city-sized rivals

Toyota has confirmed New Zealand pricing for its fire-breathing GR Yaris hot hatch, with the just-revealed asking price providing a guide to what the pint-sized powerhouse might cost in Australia.

The NZ pricing blows other city-sized hot hatches (like the Fiesta ST and VW Polo GTI) out of the water, with Toyota positioning the tiny Yaris as an almost-rival to cars like the VW Golf GTI, Ford Focus ST and Subaru WRX STI.

How much, you ask? Try NZ$54,990. In Australian dollars, that translates to $50,720. I'll pause here for a moment while you let out a collective "yikes".

Now we must point out here that NZ prices don't directly correlate to our own. Across the ditch, for example, the Ford Fiesta ST starts at NZ$39,990 - more than NZ$10,000 cheaper than the Yaris - but the Focus ST kicks off at NZ$59,490, positioning the GR somewhere between the two.

Same with VW New Zealand, where the Polo GTI starts at NZ$39,990, and the Golf GTI starts at NZ$56,99, again plonking the Yaris GR somewhere in the middle.

Jump over to Subaru NZ, and you'll find the ageing WRX starts at NZ$48,990, while the STI version kicks off at NZ$59,990.

So what does that tell us? That Toyota is targeting the middle ground between its city-sized hot hatch competition, and their bigger, meaner siblings.

In Australia, for example, the Ford Focus ST will set you back $44,690, while the Fiesta ST will set you back $31,990. A VW Golf GTI resisters at $47,190, while the Polo GTI is yours for $32,890.

In short, it means you can use the mid $30s, as your base-level guide, and the mid-$40s as the ceiling when it comes to local pricing for the Yaris GR. We'd expect to see it launch in the $39k-$43k bracket, though Toyota in Australia is yet to confirm local details.

The news isn't entirety surprising, with Toyota having already told CarsGuide it doesn't see any of the regular city-sized hot hatch crowd as a threat, instead listing the bigger and more expensive Subaru WRX and Ford Focus RS as its true competitors for the 200kW/370Nm, AWD Yaris.

Toyota has also promised the GR Yaris will be "attainable" in Australia, dropping some hints on how it plans on putting the little hot hatch on more driveways.

One option the brand is currently investigating is a subscription model, the first of its kind for a performance car in Australia, which would allow customers to essentially lease the vehicles from Toyota.

While the brand is yet to confirm details, it told CarsGuide it was looking at "innovative" ways to sell the GR Yaris here.

"It’s got to be attainable. We will look at a whole lot of different sales channels. We’re exploring various sales channels that will make it attainable," says Toyota Australia vice president of sales and marketing, Sean Hanley. "We’ll look at a whole lot of innovative ways of bringing this car to market.

"We have a number of subscription models in Australia on trial now, but we’re still young in that market."