Tommi Mäkinen is a rallying legend with four World Rally Championships in his career and running the Toyota WRC team from its reintroduction until December 2020. He also assisted in developing the new GR Yaris. CarWow got hold of one for a drag race between the new hot hatch and a Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VI Tommi Makinen Edition.
As a refresher, the Lancer Evo VI Tommi Makinen Edition debuted in December 1999 to commemorate Mäkinen winning his fourth consecutive WRC Drivers' Championship. The cars featured revisions like a tweaked suspension setup, a quicker steering ratio, and a front strut tower bar.
Gallery: 2020 Toyota GR Yaris
Power came from a 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder. Portions of the turbo were titanium for quicker response. Due to the gentleman's agreement among Japanese automakers, the rated output was 276 bhp (206 kilowatts) and 275 pound-feet (373 Newton-metres). The actual number was probably higher. It ran through a five-speed manual to an all-wheel-drive system.
They featured a slightly revised body with a different front bumper, rally-inspired graphics, and 17-inch wheels with the same design as the WRC car. Inside, there were Recaro sport seats with red upholstery and a Tommi Makinen logo. Drivers gripped a Momo steering wheel with red stitching.
In comparison, the GR Yaris has a 1.6-litre turbocharged powerplant that makes 257 bhp (192 kW) and 266 lb-ft (360 Nm) of torque. There's a six-speed manual with all-wheel drive. The optional Circuit Pack adds Torsen limited-slip differentials to the front and rear, revises the suspension tuning, and forged 18-inch BBS wheels.
The video illustrates that there's finesse necessary in driving a manual. The person behind the wheel of the Evo VI is unfamiliar with operating a vehicle with a clutch and struggles to launch the car several times.
The Evo VI proves to be a good match against the GR Yaris. Although, we expect a more skilled driver could have pushed the Mitsubishi more effectively to even better results.