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Driven: Toyota GR Yaris Rallye touches down

Extra-focused Toyota GR Yaris Rallye hot hatch arrives with ‘21 allocation exhausted

16 Apr 2021

TOYOTA Motor Company Australia’s (TMCA) most performance-focused hatch to date has finally arrived Down Under, with the GR Yaris Rallye checking in to local showrooms priced from $54,500 plus on-road costs.


With the 2021 Australian allocation for both the regular GR Yaris and the Rallye now exhausted, TMCA vice-president of sales and marketing Sean Hanley said new orders would likely have to wait until 2022 before delivery.


“We expect we’ll deliver the majority of the cars in the first allocations of both these vehicles by the end of this year,” he said.


“We’re endeavouring to get further allocation of this car and indeed the standard car in the second half of the year, we haven’t confirmed the number yet but we’re endeavouring to get a further allocation. 


“We expect that those deliveries wouldn’t be until 2022, so they’ll be somewhat delayed on what would be a normal delivery time, but this is not a limited car.”


Mr Hanley added that the GR Yaris Rallye will be brought into the country as customer demand dictates, and will not be a ‘free stock’ vehicle where hundreds or thousands of examples are ordered at once.


Toyota says it has received 2200 combined orders for both GR Yaris variants, with the ratio of orders comfortably favouring the ‘regular’ GR Yaris by a factor of around five to one.


The full order bank for the Rallye comes from when the order books were opened in November, with TMCA offering an initial driveaway price of $56,200 before reverting to its current price of $54,500 plus costs.


Offering a more focused and performance-oriented drive experience than the regular GR Yaris with enthusiasts firmly in mind, the Rallye differs from its sibling by the fitment of a number of track-oriented features to enhance performance capabilities.


Those go-faster enhancements consist of a pair of Torsen limited-slip differentials on the front and rear axles, stiffer GR high-performance MacPherson strut front and multi-link rear suspension, improved front brake ducting and Michelin Pilot Sport 4S rubber.


Other unique spec features include 18-inch BBS forged alloy wheels, GR red brake callipers, Frosted White crystal pearl paint, GR sports front seats with red stitching and perforated suede inserts, numbered Rallye plaque and a Rallye badge on the tailgate.


With a mixed chassis that combines the Yaris’ TNGA-B front and the bigger Corolla’s TNGA-C rear, the GR Yaris Rallye has a three-door body with a carbon-fibre roof and aluminium bonnet, doors and hatch, while the exterior look is helped by LED head-, tail- and foglights, a rear spoiler, rear privacy glass and dual exhaust tips. 


Moving inside the cabin, the Rallye largely matches the spec of the GR Yaris with a 7.0-inch touchscreen infotainment display with satellite navigation, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto, DAB+ digital radio, Bluetooth connectivity and an eight-speaker JBL audio system, dual-zone automatic air conditioning, keyless entry and start, front power windows, manual park brake, 4.2-inch instrument cluster display, leather-wrapped steering wheel (heated), gearshift and brake lever, aluminium pedals, electrochromatic rearview mirror and 60:40 split-fold rear seats.


Active safety tech extends to the Toyota Safety Sense suite, which includes a pre-collision safety system with pedestrian and daylight cyclist detection, daytime intersection assistance, emergency steering assist, adaptive cruise control, lane trace assist with lane centring function, lane departure alert with steering assist, road sign assist, automatic high beam, blind-spot monitor, reversing camera and six airbags.


The Rallye shares its powertrain with the GR Yaris – namely a 1.6-litre turbocharged three-cylinder petrol mill tuned to produce a hearty 200kW at 6500rpm and 370Nm of torque, driving all four wheels exclusively via a six-speed manual transmission with rev-matching ability.


Its permanent all-paw system can be split into three separate drive modes that distribute torque differently – Normal mode splits torque 60:40 front/rear, Sport mode creates a rear-biased 30:70 split and Track mode is even at 50:50 for ideal power delivery out of corners.


Stopping power comes courtesy of beefy 356mm two-piece ventilated front discs with four-piston callipers and two-pot rear callipers, with Toyota claiming the GR Yaris’ front brakes to be larger than those on the Supra.


TMCA said the Rallye badge was exclusive to the GR Yaris due its roots in rally driving, and would not be used as a catch-all terms for future performance-focused models of other Toyota GR products.


2021 Toyota GR Yaris pricing*

GR Yaris $49,500
GR Yaris Rallye $54,500

*Excludes on-road costs

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