Automobiles

Toyota GR Corolla High-Performance Hatch Teased, Debuts Thursday

If the GR Yaris is any indicator, Toyota's next reveal could be one of the hottest launches this year. Here's how to watch the debut.

We're expecting this new model to have a pumped-up widebody stance.
Toyota

One of the best-reviewed and most sought-after performance cars in recent years came from what might feel like an unlikely source: Toyota. No, I'm not talking about the excellent new GR 86 coupe, nor the GR Supra. I'm speaking of the GR Yaris, a specialized two-door hot hatchback that we can't even buy in the US. However, we're poised to get what might just be the next best thing, the GR Corolla. And now, we know when it's coming: Thursday, March 31 at 6:30pm PT.

While Toyota technically isn't confirming that its upcoming reveal is for a Corolla, these just-released official teaser images lay bare that Toyota's next new model is, in fact, a product of its Gazoo Racing performance arm, and we've known that a GR-ified Corolla has been in the works for some time.

The new model is expected to leverage much of the World Rally Championship roots and powertrain tech found in the overseas-only GR Yaris, albeit in a somewhat larger, more American-sized package. That suggests we can expect a WRC homologation-special vibe with a powerful turbocharged three-cylinder engine paired with a rev-matching manual gearbox and a competition-ready all-wheel-drive system. An automatic transmission option is also rumored.

Yep, we're expecting a rally-bred all-wheel-drive system.

Toyota

Whether Toyota lavishes the same amount of attention and R&D budget on the GR Corolla as the Yaris remains to be seen. With the latter, the Japanese automaker went so far as to craft a completely unique two-door body, complete with carbon composite roof and aluminum doors, hood and liftback. GR's engineering efforts were enough to turn Toyota's tiny, staid economy car into a budding 268-horsepower performance icon. The new GR Corolla is expected to do battle with Subaru's new WRX as well as the Volkswagen Golf R and Hyundai Veloster N.

Tune in to Toyota's Vimeo channel to watch the reveal live of this exciting new Gazoo Racing model this Thursday.

Now playing: Watch this: Toyota GR Yaris brings back the homologation special
13:59