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Video: 2023 Toyota GR Corolla: Up Close

05:33 min
By Editors
April 5, 2022

About the video

Toyota took the wraps off of the 2023 GR Corolla and we got up close to show you what they're bringing to the table with their new performance hatchback.


Something unusual is happening in the world of performance vehicles. We're actually seeing a re interest in the sport compact segment. We've seen renewals of the Volkswagen GTI and Golf R. We've seen a new Subaru WRX.
We've seen a new Honda Civic Si and hopefully we're gonna see a new Civic Type R very soon. We've even seen new entries from Hyundai, the Elantra N and the Kona N SUV. But we're also about to see something brand new from a company you might not expect. This is the 2023 Toyota GR Corolla. Now what's GR stand for? GR is Gazoo Racing. Originally started as a kind of unofficial racing team for Toyota, without the Toyota name, it's since been brought in-house and made official. Now GR is basically responsible for creating all kinds of high performance stuff out of more ordinary Toyotas. This is their first effort for the United States in the compact category. This is the GR Corolla, and it is wild. (upbeat music) (upbeat music) (upbeat music) They've obviously made some significant body changes to create a GR Corolla, and it starts up front. Check out all these scoops and louvers and air dam shields. All of this is functional. It actually improves the aerodynamics of the vehicle and increases its downforce for better grip. You go down the side of the vehicle and look at how wide these fenders are. They're covering 18 inch wheels that are wearing some serious high performance tires. Now the car itself is actually significantly different underneath the skin than a normal Corolla Hatchback is. It's got a lot more spot welds. It's got a lot more structural adhesive. This model in particular has a forged carbon roof. Now it's only good for a couple of ounces, but still it looks pretty cool. This is the Circuit Edition model. You can get your GR Corolla in two versions, the Core or the Circuit Edition. The Core is coming first. It's coming this year, kind of a base model. The Circuit Edition is gonna be loaded and it's gonna have a couple of really interesting features inside as well. But when we get to the back, that's where you start getting hints of what really makes the GR Corolla special. And that's what's under the hood. Check out what's under the bumper. Three exhaust ports. Yeah, three. That's a pretty good hint at what makes the new GR Corolla extra special. Here is what makes the '23 GR Corolla extra special. That is a 300 horsepower turbocharged 1.6-liter three-cylinder engine. That's right, 100 horsepower per piston. Now, it is the same engine that's in the GR Yaris, which we don't get in the United States, but it has been beefed up to make 43 more horsepower. And it makes that power at a screaming 6500 RPM. So this thing is going to be an absolute riot to drive. All that power is routed through a 6-speed manual transmission only, no automatic is going to be available. And all of that power then gets routed through Toyota's first performance four-wheel drive system in years. That system is even more unique because you can change how the power distribution goes. Normally it's in a 60/40 split, 60% up front, 40% to the rear. But if you wanna do some track driving, turn a little button and it can actually be shifted to 50/50. And if you want to do some drifto, some drift racing, switch it again and it goes to 30/70, 70% going to the rear wheels. So you can do some pretty sweet donuts in it. What's interesting about the performance all-wheel drive system? Well in the Core model, these are two open four-wheel drive differentials, but you can order either through the performance package or in the Circuit Edition two Torsen limited-slip differentials. Now that will really help you put the power to the ground. There are two interesting things about the GR Corolla interior and they're right here. First is this, the 6-speed manual transmission, which in the Circuit Edition is actually signed by somebody named Morizo. Now, who is Morizo? That is actually Toyota head honcho, Akio Toyoda, who used this pseudonym of Morizo to go racing. Now, of course everybody still knew who he was obviously. He's the chairman of Toyota. Everybody knows who the guy is, but hey you know what, let him have fun, let him go racing it enables him to actually convince the company to create things like this. The other thing is this knob right here. This is the power distribution knob. Now in normal mode, it's splitting the power 60/40 front to rear. You turn it one way and you get it 50/50. You turn it another way, and you get that 30/70 split where you can actually go drifting. That just sounds like an incredible amount of fun. And that's something you'd normally associate with a Corolla. We don't have any pricing information yet for the new GR Corolla, that's gonna be coming closer to its on-sale date, which is later this year. There will be two versions of the GR Corolla, the Core edition, which is kind of the base model, which you can get a couple of performance packages and other option packages for. That will be coming in middle of 2022. The Circuit Edition, like you see here, is coming in 2023. That one will have all the bells and whistles, including the sign shifter on the inside as well. We expect that the pricing is gonna be somewhere in the mid to high $30,000 range to keep it competitive with things like the Honda Civic Type R, the Subaru WRX, even the Volkswagen Golf R. Now, when we finally get a spin behind the wheel of this thing and when we finally get some pricing information, you'll be able to look that up and everything else about the new GR Corolla on

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