The 2023 Toyota GR Corolla is one of the most anticipated hot hatches on the horizon. Motor1.com recently got to ride shotgun in one with professional drifter Ryan Tuerck at the wheel around Eagles Canyon Raceway in Decatur, Texas USA.
Specifically, this is the GR Corolla Circuit Edition, meaning it has components like a forged carbon-fibre roof and Torsen limited-slip differentials at both axles. Tuerck selects the 50-50 torque split and actives the Intelligent Manual Transmission, which rev matches downshifts.
Gallery: 2023 Toyota GR Corolla
It's raining while we're taking the ride. These aren't the best conditions to set a fast lap, but this is an opportunity to see how the GR-Four all-wheel-drive system handles the slick conditions. Tuerck doesn't push the Corolla too hard, but there appear to be some exciting moments.
The GR Corolla uses the G16E-GTS 1.6-litre turbocharged three-cylinder engine that makes 300 bhp (224 kilowatts) and 273 pound-feet (370 Newton-metres). The six-speed manual is the only gearbox option. The driver can select three front-rear torque splits for the GR-Four all-wheel-drive system: 60-40, 50-50, and 30-70.
Toyota isn't yet specifying the GR Corolla's acceleration time or its top speed.
Other performance tweaks for this hot hatch include additional weld points and more structural adhesive. The bonnet and front doors are aluminium. The car rides on 18-inch wheels with Michelin Pilot Sport 4 tyres.
Gallery: Toyota GR Corolla "Morizo Edition"
The GR Corolla isn't even on sale yet, and Toyota is already announcing the even more hardcore Morizo Edition. It has an engine making 295 lb-ft (400 Nm) and shorter gearing. Ditching the rear seats, speakers, window regulators, and the whole rear window wiper system let this model cut 48 kilograms (106 pounds) from the Circuit Edition for a weight of 1,445 kilograms (3,186 pounds).
Toyota will make just 200 examples of the Morizo Edition for the 2023 model year. Pricing isn't available for any of the models yet, even the entry-level version. The GR Corolla goes on sale later this year. The Circuit and Morizo Editions join the range in 2023.