Not long after the Internet-breaking debut of the Toyota GR Yaris, a video emerged showing a low-powered, CVT-equipped prototype version. Toyota wouldn’t say at the time if it would make production, but now, it’s been confirmed as part of the domestic market range.
The JDM line-up will consist of three derivatives. The RZ is the GR Yaris as the rest of the world will know it, with a 257bhp 1.6-litre inline-three powering all-four wheels. Front and rear Torsen limited-slip differentials and stickier Michelin Pilot Sport 4S tyres are available via the ‘high-performance grade’ option.
The RC is intended to be the “competition-focused” car of the range, with the weight figure dropping by 30kg to 1250kg thanks to the ditching of the infotainment system among other measures. Interestingly, it’s been given smaller wheels and tyres compared to the other cars in the range, measuring in at 205/45/17 compared to 225/40/17.
Finally, there’s the RS, which is lighter still at 1130kg, but only because - like the prototype seen earlier this year - it’s lost the all-wheel drive system. Also, in place of the bespoke, high-power 1.6-litre inline-three is a more run-of-the-mill ‘Dynamic Force’ 1.5-litre triple. It produces just 118bhp and 109lb ft of torque, which is sent to the front wheels via a CVT automatic gearbox.
From the outside, you’ll struggle to tell it apart from the RZ - the bodywork is identical. This is crucial - it’s the GR Yaris’ three-door shell that needs to be homologated for use in WRC. So, even with some less interesting innards, the RS will still count towards the 25,000 examples Toyota is required to build for compliance with FIA rules.
Both the RC and RS will go on sale in September, while The RZ is available to order now in ‘First Edition’ and ‘High-performance First Edition’ guises. These cars will have the signature of ‘Morizo‘ (Akio Toyoda’s racing pseudonym) on the windscreen, and the option of a marbled carbon fibre finish on the roof. Anyone pre-ordering will also receive “special gifts” which will include WRC tickets and a miniature GR Yaris model. Neat!