The GR Corolla will be the first showcase of any GR-badged model in India.
The upcoming Auto Expo 2023 will be Toyota’s first appearance at the biennial auto show. And while the Innova Hycross and LC 300 will surely garner a lot of interest, enthusiasts might be piqued by the fact that Toyota is also going to showcase a GR (Gazoo Racing) model for the first time in India. Yes, Toyota will be showcasing the GR Corolla hatchback at the Auto Expo 2023.
- GR Corolla is powered by a 304hp, 1.6-litre turbo-petrol engine
- Rivals the likes of Civic Type R and Gold R globally
- Toyota to also showcase several alternate fuel technologies at Auto Expo
While an India launch is not on the cards just yet, Toyota could use this opportunity to gauge people’s interest in GR models.
Toyota GR Corolla hatchback: what is it?
The Toyota GR Corolla is based on the standard Corolla hatchback that’s on sale in markets abroad, but this performance version of the hatchback has been heavily reworked by Toyota’s Gazoo Racing (GR) performance division.
The GR Corolla is underpinned by Toyota’s TNGA platform, which is the same as the standard hatchback, but it gets a highly rigid body that has been specially constructed by Gazoo racing. Over standard, it features extra welds around chassis joints and more extensive use of structural adhesive between various components. At 1,474kg (kerb), it’s also much lighter than the standard hatchback with extensive use of lightweight materials.
Toyota GR Corolla hatchback: what’s under the hood?
The real talking point about the GR Corolla is what’s under its hood. The hatchback is powered by 1.6-litre, three-cylinder, single-scroll turbocharged engine that produces as much as 304hp and 370Nm of peak torque – that’s nearly as powerful as a Mercedes-AMG A35 sedan with the latter having a larger 2.0-litre engine.
The engine gets several mods by GR that includes a triple-exit exhaust which improves exhaust flow and reduces back pressure, a new ‘multi-oil jet piston’ cooling system, larger exhaust valves and a part-machined intake port.
The engine comes mated to a 6-speed manual gearbox with power being sent to all four wheels. The gearbox also has a rev-matching function that allows for smoother downshifts. Toyota does not claim any performance figures for the GR Corolla, but a 0-100kph time nudging the 5-second mark can be expected.
Toyota GR Corolla hatchback: exterior and interior
The GR Corolla gets a rally-inspired makeover over the standard hatchback that includes black trim details, a larger front grille with wider air intakes, heavily flared wheel arches, air ducts on the bumpers and fenders, a pronounced rear diffuser, sportier alloys and a prominent rear wing. That’s matched by motorsport-inspired tweaks to the cabin, including a leather-trimmed GR steering wheel, GR-badged seats and aluminium pedals.
Toyota’s showcase at Auto Expo 2023
Apart from the Innova and the Land Cruiser 300, Toyota will also showcase its range of strong hybrid models, a plug-in hybrid, a Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle (FCEV), and a Flex-Fuel Hybrid. Additionally, Toyota will also display pure EVs along with hydrogen concept technology. Toyota hasn’t exactly mentioned which cars they will showcase but we could see the new Prius, the Mirai FCEV and the Corolla flex-fuel hybrid which Toyota had brought to India just a few months ago.
Toyota could take the Auto Expo as an opportunity to launch the Urban Cruiser Hyryder CNG, bookings for which are already underway for a token amount of Rs 25,000.