Toyota is finally entering the hot hatch market.
The Japanese giant issued this teaser image of the new Yaris GR-4 on Instagram, a new pint-sized pocket-rocket that will pit Toyota against the likes of the Volkswagen Polo GTI and Ford Fiesta ST. And there’s good news for Australian fans, because a prototype of the new model will make its debut down under, specifically at the Wedding Bells stage of next week’s Rally Australia event in Coffs Harbour, according to the Instagram post.
Toyota hasn’t released any official details on the new car, beyond the image, but reports from Europe suggest the new car will be used as a homologation special for the company’s next World Rally Championship (WRC) entry.
Wider rear wheel arches are clearly visible in the teaser picture which has led to speculation that the Yaris GR-4 could feature the all-wheel drive system that is offered in selected Japanese domestic market models as well as a more sophisticated multi-link rear suspension set-up. It’s also believed that the suspension layout includes new pick up points that will help the Toyota Gazoo Racing WRC team with its version of the Yaris.
In a possible major change for the GR-4 it appears to have a lower roofline than the recently revealed 2020 Yaris, which would help make for a more aerodynamic hot hatch and rally car.
There’s no word yet on what will be lurking under the bonnet of the GR-4, but if Toyota has gone to the trouble of modifying the roofline and adding all-wheel drive you can be assured it’s likely to be a potent powerplant.
CarsGuide will be on hand for the official unveiling of the Yaris GR-4 in Coffs Harbour, so stay tuned for more details.