Toyota’s amusingly named Gazoo Racing arm showed off some forward-thinking products at this week’s Tokyo Motor Show, including a GRMN Yaris and the GR GT3 Concept, in addition to its version of the all-new vehicle. electric bZ4X. While the latter is part of the company’s journey to carbon neutrality, the other machines underscore the importance of having corporate leadership that really cares about cars.
The first is a refinement of the GR Yaris, shedding about 50 pounds of weight and lowering the car about a half inch. Considering the engineers have used the “repeated break and repair” method in developing the car, the triumvirate of a mechanical LSD, a close-ratio gear transmission and a low final gear set is also part of the deal. It would seem that Akio Toyoda’s reductive spirit has been allowed to flow through the company like fresh blood through a hospital patient’s veins.
To clarify the headline of this post, the GRMN Yaris is not a concept but a machine to be built and is now part of the so-called ‘booking lottery’ on the TGR website. In addition to the already entertaining specs, a circuit pack or rally pack can be added. The cars will be sold at GR Garages in Japan in mid-2022 with prices starting at approximately $65,000.
Of course, there are a select few customers in this country who would choose to spend that kind of money on a platform like this rather than an SUV or truck, as is their prerogative. However, the GRMN spirit has seeped through several models in the Toyota North America lineup, proving once and for all that having a gear at the helm of a car company (Toyoda, in this case) can help. to encourage the development of interesting and compelling vehicles. Vehicles Remember, the company claims to be planning a Corolla that will appeal to our market.
Elsewhere, the GR GT3 Concept cuts a rug that could make the stealthy two-door available to a customer racing program. Unrelated to anything else currently being produced by the House of Toyota, this dedicated winged race car probably won’t spawn a production model, but it could birth an entrant into some sort of spec racing series. We’ll remind readers that Lexus previewed an electric supercar late last year, so we wouldn’t be the least bit surprised if some of those bones are under this machine.
Also on display was an all-electric bZ4X with some styling tweaks to make it look angrier and a range of off-the-shelf parts from the GR Heritage collection. The latter is intended to help restore notable earlier vehicles like the A70 and A80 Supra, as well as off-roaders like the 40-series Land Cruiser.
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