Toyota Aims To Increase Yaris Sales In Europe By Racing It At GRMN

Mar 14, 2017 08:04 PM EDT | Joyce Vega

The new Yaris GRMN is more than a simple hot hatch. It is a pure performance model that directly benefits from the engineering and tuning skills that Toyota has developed in its motorsport program.

As told by the Forbes, Toyota has been struggling to gain a meaningful foothold in Europe against Volkswagen, Peugeot, and other local brands. With that in mind, Toyota developed the new Yaris GRMN hot hatch, which debuted at Geneva last week and it is a car that can compete at the track and still be used for everyday transportation. GRMN stands for Gazoo Racing Masters of Nurburgring. It is a reference to the name of Toyota’s racing organization and the German track where automakers test and race their performance cars.

Back in 1995, Toyota Yaris was conceived as basic, economical transportation. However, the latest Yaris GRMN has a whopping 205 horsepower from a supercharged 1.8-liter four cylinder engine, and it is made to appeal to the young buyers. A total of hundreds GRMNs will be built in Europe, mainly for racers. However, the idea is to draw more attention to the third generation 1.5-liter Yaris, which has been recently updated.

Toyota Gazoo Racing reported more about Toyota’s separate racing entity. Gazoo Racing entity first entered the Nurburgring 24 hours race in 2007 with two used Altezzas. The racing team was composed of mechanics and employees from various departments within Toyota. As told by Toyota’s Founder Kiichiro Toyoda, car racing is more than just entertainment, it is vital for the development of the Japanese passenger vehicle industry.

With those words in mind, Toyota went back to the roots and united all existing Toyota motorsports activities into ‘TOYOTA GAZOO Racing’. Yaris GRMN is the Toyota’s choice for a car that will compete in rallies for the first time this year. The four-time world rally champion Tommi Maikenen will drive the car.

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