It is official: The powerful, stylish and agile hot hatch we have been waiting for is on its way. Toyota South Africa Motors’ (TSAM) GAZOO Racing stable will further expand in the second quarter of 2023 when the GR Corolla hot hatch arrives, bringing the number of GR models in South Africa to four – including the GR Supra, GR Yaris and GR86.

“We can safely say Toyota’s philosophy of building fun-to-drive cars is clear to see. With the GR brand’s motorsport DNA, the new GR Corolla promises to deliver on just what driving enthusiasts’ really want – high performance turbocharged power, agile and dynamic handling, and of course the looks to match,” says Glenn Crompton, Vice President of Marketing at TSAM.

Under the bonnet of the GR Corolla, the G16E-GTS 1.6-litre three-cylinder turbo-charged engine has been further enhanced to suit the larger hatch, with a 12% increase in power to 221kW. Mated exclusively to an intelligent six-speed manual transmission, the GR Corolla employs the GR-Four all-wheel-drive system developed through Toyota’s involvement in the World Rally Championship.

The GR Corolla is built on Toyota’s GA-C platform with enhanced frame reinforcements developed specifically for the GR Corolla at the Motomachi plant in Japan. The Motomachi facility is the birthplace of legends such as the Lexus LFA and Supra A80 and is now home to the first GR production line, where GR Corolla and GR Yaris are assembled.

Pricing, detailed specification and model line-up for the GR Corolla will be confirmed closer to launch timing. TSAM also confirms that this model will be offered in limited quantities and that distribution will only be via GR-focused dealerships.