Lightweight garage #32 3-cylinder engine in Toyota Yaris GR

The Vehicle

In this garage is the GR Yaris from the Japanese car manufacturer Toyota. With its all-wheel drive and 261 hp, it was admittedly designed for the World Rally Championship. But sporty drivers without a racing license can breathe a sigh of relief: The GR Yaris is also available as a street-legal variant.

The project was personally initiated by Toyota's racing-minded CEO Akio Toyoda, who had previously promised, "We won't build any more boring cars."

The GR Yaris impressively demonstrates how seriously he takes this promise. It is an uncompromising sports machine that clearly sets itself apart from the typical understatement of many other new developments - while still achieving a high technical level.

The Technology

To be a competitive rally car, the GR has little in common with the original Yaris. It has only 3 doors and is longer, wider and flatter than the 5-door Yaris.

The most powerful three-cylinder engine available, with an engine displacement of just 1.6 liters and 261 hp, provides the necessary propulsion. As a result, the GR Yaris accelerates from zero to 100 km/h in just 5.5 seconds.

To perfect the driving experience acoustically as well, Toyota takes an unconventional approach: a microphone in the engine compartment picks up the sounds of the power unit and transmits them to the sound system in the interior. Instead of Active Noise Canceling, there is "Active Noise Control" here.

In addition to this gimmick, the GR has all the virtues that a classic rally car needs. A short-ratio, manual six-speed transmission, a tight chassis, biting brakes and, of course, a mechanical handbrake with brake lever to ensure driving fun at every second.

©8000vueltas, CFRP roof of the Toyota GR Yaris

The Lightweighting Effect

To get the effervescence of the vehicle, which was only built 25000 times, onto the road, several lightweight construction measures were implemented. The roof is made of CFRP and is therefore 3.5 kg lighter than a steel roof. The doors, hood and tailgate are made of aluminum, and the body is also twelve percent lighter than the original variant. Stiffness has nevertheless been increased by using more spot welds. Thanks to these measures, the GR Yaris weighs less than 1300kg despite having an all-wheel drive.

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