The new Toyota GR Corolla is on its way to the country and is scheduled to land in the second quarter of 2023 in limited quantities, becoming the fourth model in the Gazoo Racing (GR) stable.
In South Africa, the Corolla is going to produce a respectable 221kW, whereas in its home market Japan it generates a slightly higher 224kW.
While the power discrepancy is minute, it nonetheless raised questions about why the performance car has a little less grunt on our roads.
“The differing GR Corolla outputs are determined by a) emissions-control equipment the vehicle is fitted with and b) the rating system/units used by the different markets,” Toyota South Africa (TSAM) confirmed to TopAuto.
“Our models are aligned to European emission standard so therefore we receive the slightly lower output version.” The same factors applied to its smaller brother, the GR Yaris.
TSAM also noted that different markets may have differing official power readings due to the various ways in which output is measured – for example; metric horsepower vs mechanical horsepower vs kilowatts.
GR Corolla specs
The new GR Corolla sports the same 1.6-litre, three-cylinder, turbocharged powerplant as the Yaris with a 12% power increase to 221kW, coupling to a six-speed manual gearbox.
Similarly, the GR-Four selectectable 4WD system has been enhanced and now allows the driver to individually adjust power distribution, accelerator response, and steering instead of offering pre-set drive modes.
TSAM has not yet revealed the Corolla’s local performance statistics, though the 224kW models have been tested to sprint to 100km/h in under six seconds with a top speed of 230km/h and the South African variants probably won’t be too far off.
Based on Japan’s Corolla Sport, the GR Corolla provides a more menacing look thanks to 20mm-wider front fenders complemented by a 60mm-wider wheelbase, and 30mm-wider rear fenders accompanied by an 85mm-wider stance.
Moreover, the Toyota boasts a triple-exhaust outlet, sizeable front bumper air intakes, front fender and hood air outlets, a carbon fibre-reinforced plastic roof, and 18-inch gloss black wheels wearing Michelin Pilot Sport 4 tyres.
Rigidity and stability have also been enhanced via the installation of new braces between the rear wheel wells to the under-floor tunnel, and under the floor in front of the fuel tank.
Inside the cabin, the Corolla gains a model-exclusive digital instrument cluster, GR-specific seats, a touchscreen infotainment system, the Toyota Safety Sense advanced driver assistance suite, and a hand-operated parking brake “to allow better vehicle control” when drifting, said the manufacturer.
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