While Toyota isn't exactly synonymous with building hot hatchbacks (Corolla GTi aside, that is), the folks over at Gazoo Racing are quite keen on shoving chilli up the Corolla hatchback's exhaust pipes. Last year, rumors swirled that Toyota will be building a high-performance version of the all-new Corolla and now, they have confirmed it.
It was confirmed by none other than Toshio Kanei, deputy chief designer of Toyota Motor Corporation. He didn't spill all the beans just yet but he said, “We are already working on that. The development takes place under the supervision of Toyota Gazoo Racing. This department has included the Corolla GRMN in the future plan, but for now the project is still in the planning stage.”
So what will it be like? It definitely won't be a hybrid, adds Kanei. Instead, they are going for the small engine with a big turbo route. Just how small will it be? Kanei didn't mention engine size but mentioned that a boosted 1.6-liter would be an interesting approach. With that, it's possible to see at least 250 horsepower from the small engine, but nothing is set in stone yet. Then again, the Civic Type R which has a 2-liter turbo engine packs over 300 horses, so will Toyota let its hair down a bit and try to match the Civic's power?
For now, we'll have to settle for Kanei's word. They didn't say when it will come out, but it's comforting to know that Toyota is pumping up the Corolla hatch and giving it more performance credentials. A Type R chaser? That remains to be seen.