Hot hatchbacks are awesome. They deliver one of the most entertaining automotive experiences. It’s a combination of factors that make them great. A hot hatch is built around small size, light weight, and approachable power. You get a feeling that they can be driven hard, yet you’re not touching incarceration-inducing speeds. We’re dealing with a car built on bones likely found in an economy car or simple people-hauler.
We can never have enough from this segment. But it’s a segment not filled many options. Most are forbidden fruit we must admire from afar. And now Toyota is going to be building an amazing example of such. Those of us in North America can’t have it. Not at least for 25 years. Someone is looking to change that. A Change.org petition has sprung up, and you should sign it..
Bring us the homologation hot-hatch glory!
At the time of this writing, the petition has blasted past the desired 1,500 signatures. That’s not nothing. Still, it’s nowhere near enough to get Toyota to sell the car here. It’s unlikely that even a tenth of those who signed would buy the car new. Chances are this petition will not have any influence on Toyota selling the GR Yaris in North America. But it’s a start.
The 2021 GR Yaris has all the makings for an amazing enthusiast experience. The 270 horsepower is enough to be quick but still entirely usable on the street.That four-wheel-drive system can, like a rally car, send up to 70% of the power to the rear. There’s a six-speed manual transmission, a relatively low 28,00-pound curb weight, and the thing looks damn good to boot.
Could it happen?
Bringing this car to North America would be a fantastic move for Toyota. The Ford Fiesta ST is no longer an option. Volkswagen’s venerable GTI is forever getting bigger and more complicated. We don’t know what’s in store for the Mk8 Golf R. Subaru only sells the WRX STI as a sedan. The GR Yaris’ closest competitors would be the Hyundai Veloster N and the Honda Civic Type R, but both are burdened with only driving the front wheels. This is the prime opportunity for Toyota to bring the North American consumers a rowdy, angry hot hatch with AWD.
Sign the petition, folks. et’s make it happen.