TOYOTA GR COROLLA: THE SLEEK AND POWERFUL HATCHBACK
TOYOTA GR COROLLA – The first-ever 2023 GR Corolla, the powerful, sleek, and nimble hot hatch that US drivers are longing for, is on its way. This all-new addition to Toyota’s increasing array of sports vehicles provides the performance, handling, and functionality that hot hatch enthusiasts enjoy, thanks to the detail-obsessed TOYOTA GAZOO Racing team and master driver Akio Toyoda, a.k.a. Morizo, signing off on approval.
Toyota’s automobile development operations were increased in 2007 with the intention to compete in the 24 Hours Nürburgring, a hard endurance event hosted on the legendary course snaking through the German forest. However, the squad was named GAZOO Racing and was made up of Toyota workers, including Akio Toyoda, who drove under the identity of Morizo.
INTRODUCTION – TOYOTA GR COROLLA
With experienced drivers, specialists, and Morizo behind the wheel, the GR Corolla was put through its paces at some of Japan’s most prestigious circuits, including Fuji Speedway, Suzuka, and Tsukuba Circuit. Toyota has developed a specialised GR Factory at its production location in Motomachi, Japan, to assist in meeting the performance targets for the GR Corolla. With all TOYOTA GAZOO Racing sports cars deeply steeped in motorsports, it stands to reason that the GR Corolla’s powertrain was formed from the rigours of rally racing.
It was developed in partnership with the TOYOTA GAZOO Racing World Rally Team and polished by WRC drivers to produce high levels of traction and control with engineering aimed to maximise driving power to each wheel while being simple and lightweight. The GR Corolla’s four-wheel-drive performance may be adjusted with the turn of a dial to meet the demands of the driver. The GR Corolla Circuit Edition also comes with front and rear Torsen Limited-Slip Differentials (LSD), which improve cornering performance and grip by allowing you to alter the distribution of left and right-hand driving torque on the front and rear axles.
DESIGN & TECH
An extremely stiff body was expressly designed for the GR Corolla in order to deliver control worthy of the GR badge. It created handling performance that rewarded the driver based on the GA-C platform. Increased stiffness is achieved by incorporating many more weld spots in the frame, particularly to reinforce joints. The front suspension is a MacPherson-type strut design that provides minimal weight and solid handling while optimising tyre grip potential.
The rear suspension employs a multilink system with double-wishbones to achieve the AWD system’s aim of optimum agility and stability. Wide tread tyres provide outstanding cornering performance while keeping the 103.9-inch long wheelbase of the GR Corolla. It has Michelin Pilot Sport 4 tyres 235/40R18 on both grades and 18-inch gloss black 15-spoke cast alloy wheels on both grades.
DEVELOPMENT – TOYOTA GR COROLLA
Throughout the development of the GR Corolla, there has been an emphasis on reducing weight in order to optimise performance potential while maintaining strength and safety. This discipline is also visible in the car’s construction, which makes great use of lightweight metals and materials in important sections. The roof of the Circuit Edition is built of a forged carbon sheet moulding compound. This lightweight, extremely stiff material saves weight over a steel roof and helps reduce the car’s centre of gravity.
The bonnet and front door panels are made of aluminium, with light and strong high-tensile steel employed in essential sections to guarantee the car’s structure can safely absorb and disperse collision forces. The snout of the GR Corolla ascends to a tapering roofline for the best potential aerodynamic performance. To produce more downforce, wind flow is directed onto the rear spoiler.
The front and rear canards, as well as the GR-FOUR, stamped lower rockers, are shaped similarly to rally cars to efficiently channel airflow down the sides of the vehicle. Hood, fender, and rear bumper ducts, as well as a flat underfloor, help to minimise drag, increase downforce, and enhance stability. The interior design of the GR Corolla mirrors the car’s performance, especially around the driver’s cockpit. Incorporating professional driver input, a GR Full TFT metre with a 12.3-inch colour Multi-Information Display (MID) that includes a GR metre with 4WD mode, turbo pressure, gear position indication, and tachometer was designed.
The brightly lighted display is intended for easy readability in any lighting condition and even has a GR animation during startup. The shift lever has a shorter stroke to allow for a speedy transfer between gears. The action is light, with short shift strokes, and is positioned where the driver’s arm is naturally lowered from steering, enhancing the performance quality.
The inside of the Circuit Edition is done in black with red trim features around the door handles, centre console, steering wheel, and side air vents, while the interior of the Core Grade is completed in black with silver details. On the Circuit Edition, standard features include automatic temperature control, power windows with one-touch auto up/down, and heated front seats and steering wheel. Both grades come standard with a push-button GR engine start/stop button, aluminium sport pedals, two USB charging outlets, One 12V auxiliary power outlet, lighting footwells, a front console tray, and a rear console box.