Toyota Wants to Expand GR Performance Arm
Toyota is reportedly taking the performance aspects of its brand, which some of our readers might recall has been a little spotty, very seriously and has begun making plans to broaden the horizons of the Gazoo Racing (GR). The sub-brand, which seems to be gradually supplanting Toyota Racing Development (TRD), has introduced a slew of GR-badged models in Asia and Europe and will be affixing the title onto the returning 86 coupe. It has also slapped the performance designation onto the current-generation Supra here in North America, with no intention of stopping there.
According to Bob Carter, executive vice president of sales for Toyota North America, the Japanese manufacturer wants to extend the GR treatment to even more models.
Toyota Unveils Corolla Cross, Next GR86, and More
Toyota is on a product blitz today.
Our man Chris is in Texas today, learning more about what the automaker has planned, and while he [s]eats all the shrimp[/s] talks to brand folks about it, I’ll give you the newsier skinny.
Rare Rides: The 1987 Chevrolet Nova Hatchback, the All-American Corolla
Today’s Rare Ride was the final iteration of the Chevrolet Nova nameplate in North America. An economy car that largely vanished from roads long ago, today’s hatchback example is very clean and very NUMMI.
Junkyard Find: 1990 Geo Prizm With 321,981 Miles
The General established the Geo brand for the 1989 model year, as a way to move low-priced iron designed and/or built by Toyota, Suzuki, and Isuzu (for some reason, Daewoo-built cars didn’t get sheltered under the Geo banner, so the LeMans retained Pontiac badges for its entire 1988-1993 sales run here). Of all the Geos, the Corolla-twin Prizm proved the most durable, and so I still find plenty of Prizms during my junkyard travels. Here’s a ’90 with an exceptionally high final odometer reading, found in a Denver-area yard last month.
Junkyard Find: 2002 Toyota Corolla CE, Last of the 3-Speed Automatics
Not long ago, I became curious about the production longevity of the good old three-speed automatic transmission in North America. The first really successful true automatic had four forward speeds and the two-speed Powerglide delivered the slushbox to the masses, but the three-speed Detroit automatics of the 1960s truly converted the continent to the two-pedal religion. During the last couple of decades of the 20th century, the three-speed got sidelined by more sophisticated transmissions. What was the final new car you could buy with a three-speed transmission in North America? That’s today’s Junkyard Find: a 2002 Toyota Corolla CE, found in Denver last week.
Toyota's Apex Corolla Priced, Only 6K to Be Sold
If you desire more sport from your Corolla, act fast.
Toyota has announced pricing for the Corolla Apex, but only 6,000 will be made.
The car was announced way back in July, but now we have a price tag.
Toyota Lends a Little Attention to Its Car Lineup
Despite deep-sixing its Yaris hatch and sedan for the coming model year, Toyota hasn’t lost interest in all of its passenger car models (not that the Yaris was really as Toyota, but that’s beside the point). There’s been a fair bit of action on that front in recent years, and the automaker shows no signs of stopping.
New trims join the brand’s car entourage for 2021, though those looking to get into the barest-bones Camry will walk away from this article disappointed.
Meet the Toyota Corolla… Cross
A strange new animal has appeared overseas, bearing a name that’s very, very familiar to American drivers. Corolla Cross, by Toyota.
It’s a Corolla, only a crossover.
2020 Toyota Corolla Hybrid LE Review - Incognito Prius Alternative
Add the Toyota Corolla to the list of nameplates that were accused of losing the plot in recent years, before being righted — at least partially — by a redesign or refresh.
We’ve talked about this with the Nissan Altima (and Sentra, and Versa), as well as other vehicles. Now, it’s the Toyota’s turn.
I got my grubby mitts on a Corolla Hybrid and put it through its paces around Chicago. I’ve been critical of the car before – the last-generation model’s steering felt like it was constantly out to lunch, and the seating position was uncomfortable, especially for a tall, beer-gutted dude like me.
These flaws might’ve been acceptable if the car didn’t also feel downmarket, even accounting for its price point. Honda, Hyundai, and others were offering compact sedans that were even with (or better) than the Corolla for similar money.
Toyota took a step in the right direction with the Corolla hatch, but did the sedan follow? Well, sort of.
Toyota: Is It Heat That You Want, Fellow Americans?
Toyota appears to be ready to answer a call, hinting at — but stopping short of confirming — the future arrival of a small car with outsized performance on American shores.
The automaker’s U.S. arm greeted Thursday by gathering up consumers who’d like to hear more about a GR-badged hot hatch from the company. GR meaning Gazoo Racing, an abbreviation already slapped on a two-door Yaris screamer not available on this continent. Boasting a very blown three-cylinder and all-wheel drive, this Yaris is not your coworker’s wife’s commuter. Nor will its one-size-up sibling be anything to scoff at.
Toyota clearly sees opportunity in the compact hot hatch space, and rumors and trademarks have spoken to this for some time. Today, Toyota’s speaking about it.
More Word on That Shadowy Hot Corolla…
Recent trademark filings in Australia offered up tantalizing rumor fare for the hot hatch crowd, but the documents didn’t necessarily spell added future fun for Toyota-loving Americans. That, apparently, is now something they should expect.
The GR Corolla name will reportedly find a home on a three-cylinder version of the Corolla Hatchback — a vehicle whose piston count shouldn’t be scoffed at.
Intriguing Toyota Trademarks Hint at Boosted Honda Rivalry
There’s no question that Toyota wishes posters of its cars were found on the bedroom walls of more teenage boys, and, to its credit, it’s made headway on that goal. Supra, anyone? Then there’s the TRD Camry and Avalon, which might raise eyebrows if found in said posters.
That said, the injection of sport into the brand’s once staid lineup seems poised to target the lower end of things. We’ve seen the overseas GR Yaris, an exciting hot hatch not bound for these shores, but Toyota’s focus now seems to be turning to higher-volume small cars. This is where things could get interesting for North America.
Toyota Planning Something Like GR Yaris for North America
Drivers in North America have urged Toyota to export the 268-horsepower GR Yaris pretty much since the day it was announced. There’s even a Change.org petition to get the European variant shipped to Canada. Still, it always seemed like an impossible dream. An ultra-powerful subcompact doesn’t have mass appeal here and the model isn’t actually the same car as the one sold in Japan.
However, Toyota may not leave North American consumers empty handed. The automaker has heard the Western wailing and is working on a plan to appease the market. While the GR Yaris may be a bridge too far, something akin to the hot hatch is reportedly in development to cover for its absence.
Dueling Compacts: Two Class Leaders Manage a Win in 2019
Not that long ago, we posited that the Toyota Corolla and Honda Civic would buck the declining passenger car trend and eke out a sales win in 2019. Several things were working in the models’ favor — name recognition, diversity of choice, and the elimination of domestic rivals.
In this market, in this era, breaking even counts as a win. And that’s just what the Corolla and Civic did last year.
What Slump? Toyota Ekes Out Its Best November to Date
While U.S. auto sales are expected to slump further this year, continuing a trend in the industry, certain products seem impervious to market pressures. Take the Toyota Tacoma, for example. Hardly the newest kid on the block, the Tacoma nonetheless manages to consistently retain buyers while capturing new ones.
Like its parent company, the Tacoma just posted its best-ever November sales month. And wouldn’t you know it — early results are in, and the new Corolla seems to be a hit.