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Toyota Yaris GR Sport adds styling and suspension mods, but no power boost

Steve Walker
13 Sep 2018

Toyota’s warm hatch Yaris GR Sport will debut in Paris with the 1.5-litre hybrid powertrain from the standard car

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When Toyota ran the 209bhp, 1135kg Yaris GRMN up the flagpole at the 2017 Geneva Motor Show, confirming in the process that this limited run model heralded a more concerted effort to inject some dynamism into its hatchback range, the interest of car fans was well and truly piqued. Now that plan could be coming to fruition with the Toyota Yaris GR Sport set to debut at the 2018 Paris Motor Show.

Historically, Toyota has had more success with purpose built performance cars than it has with fettled versions of its mainstream hatchbacks, but the Yaris GRMN was a rare highlight and the GR Sport will aim to capture some of that flavour, while selling in significantly larger quantities than the 600-unit special. 

> Paris Motor Show 2018 preview

Don’t get too excited, though. While the GRMN features a screaming supercharged 1.8-litre unit, the GR Sport is a 1.5-litre hybrid, the electrified powertrain and CVT automatic transmission lifted unchanged from the standard Yaris. The 98bhp unit, will get the GR Sport to 62mph in a relaxing 11.8s, then on to a 102mph top speed.

The whiff of missed opportunity is circulating at this point but the GR Sport is more than a hybrid Toyota supermini dressed up in 17-inch alloys, black detailing and a boot spoiler. The Bridgestone Potenza RE50 tyres are the same as on the GRMN and tweaks have been made to sharpen up the Yaris’ on-road act. Sachs Performance shocks and a solid anti-roll bar are added with the GR Sport moved 11mm closer to the road and the wheel-to-wheelarch gap reduced by 18mm. 

Inside, there are GR-branded sports seats with white stitching and inserts plus a three-spoke steering wheel that’s smaller than that in the standard Yaris models and lifted directly from the GT86 Coupe. 

Running costs are likely to be a big attraction with the Yaris Hybrids elsewhere in the range slotting into insurance group 8 and managing 85mpg on the combined cycle. Prices have not been announced but they are likely to be more problematic with the standard Yaris Hybrids hovering around the £18,000-£20,000 bracket where some truly talented sporty supermini options are available, including the Ford Fiesta ST.

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