Only a few years after releasing one of the best hot hatches in a long time – the GR Yaris – Toyota has finally revealed a follow up in the form of the 2023 Toyota GR Corolla. Using the same platform and engine as the smaller GR Yaris, the GR Corolla will launch in Australia in late 2022 with pricing and local specification to be announced before then. 

According to Toyota, “With professional drivers, experts and Morizo (aka Toyota global president Akio Toyoda) at the wheel, GR Corolla was tested repeatedly at some of Japan’s leading circuits, including Fuji Speedway, Suzuka and Tsukuba Circuit.”

“In addition, the GR team carried out heavy duty dirt and snow driving with a Japanese Rally Championship driver. No road was left unturned in the process, so engineers and technicians could sharpen acceleration and control worthy of the GR name” said the company.

Under the bonnet of the 2022 Toyota GR Corolla is the same 1.6-litre three-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine as the GR Yaris, but with peak power pumped up to 220kW. Peak torque remains the same 370Nm as the GR Yaris. Like the GR Yaris, the sole transmission option is a six-speed manual – though an eight-speed automatic is said to be in development. The GR Corolla is – like the GR Yaris – all-wheel drive, and capable of sending up to 70 per cent of its grunt to the rear.

Stylistically, the 2023 Toyota GR Corolla follows on from the GR Yaris with a pumped up look thanks to bulging front and rear shoulders, three exhaust pipes and a large front intake. Aluminium panels such as the bonnet and front doors help keep the weight gain of the GR to under 90kg, with a weight of around 1,475kg, with 90mm front and 60mm rear wider tracks further helping cornering ability. Trainspotters will notice that the headlights are slightly different to the regular Corolla, and we expect them to be part of the facelifted Corolla range.

The interior of the 2023 Toyota GR Corolla is largely unchanged from the regular Corolla aside from a new 12.3-inch digital driver’s display, a whole host of GR badges, red stitching, a manual handbrake, sports seats and a new 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system with cloud-based navigation.

In the US, the 2023 Toyota GR Corolla will be offered in a Circuit Edition, which comes with a bonnet with scoops, a carbon fibre roof, front and rear limited-slip differentials, a massive rear spoiler, red brake callipers, matte black 18-inch alloy wheels and leather and suede seats. We predict the US Circuit Edition to be the standard specification offered locally.

Like the regular Corolla, the GR will feature a long list of safety kit, including auto emergency braking (AEB) with pedestrian detection, lane departure warning with steering assist, lane trace assist, blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert, adaptive cruise control, auto high beam and road sign assist.

In a special nod to performance Toyota and Lexus models of the past, the 2023 Toyota GR Corolla will be built at Toyota’s factory in Motomachi, Japan. This factory previously built the Lexus LF-A and A80 Toyota Supra, to name a few.

The 2023 Toyota GR Corolla will launch in Australia in late 2022 with local pricing and full specifications to be announced before then. Stay tuned to DiscoverAuto for the latest automotive news and reviews. 

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