TOYOTA GAZOO Racing. It's powered by a direct-injected, turbocharged 1.6-liter engine making a screaming 380 hp and 313 ft/lbs of torque. And look at the insane aerodynamics. Just LOOK AT THEM!
This fire-breathing Yaris marks Toyota's return to WRC after a 17 year hiatus and has a ton or rally cred behind it.
“The Yaris WRC is a well-designed car with incredible potential,” revealed Tommi Mäkinen, Team Principal of TOYOTA GAZOO Racing WRC. “The new regulations allow for much greater freedom in terms of development. Although we have yet to explore all the possibilities, we can say that the car is reliable and quick. I really can't wait to see the results in racing conditions.”
Yes, that's the Tommi Mäkinen best known for piloting Mitsubishi EVOs in the WRC in the 1990s.
Two Yaris WRC cars will be driven by Jari-Matti Latvala and Juho Hänninen, and they'll first appear at the opening round of the WRC on January 19, 2017. Young Finnish driver, Esapekka Lappi, will also join the season as a test driver.
We've long said Toyota will have to homologize the car, so we can expect a spiced-up Yaris to hit the market at some point, but I'm guessing we will not see it in the U.S. I desperately hope I'm wrong. Mark my words: If a turbocharged Yaris came to the States, we would buy one.
You can keep up with TOYOTA GAZOO Racing WRC on their Facebook Page, on Twitter @TGR_WRC, on on Instagram (@TGR_WRC), and on YouTube.
As you know, we own a Toyota Yaris as well as a Subaru Impreza WRX. This means we will actually own a vehicle that competes in the WRC ... and it's not the Subaru.