2023 Toyota GR Corolla: Preview

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Everyday car performance editions are all the rage right now. It’s easy to find hot SUVs, sedans, and pickups from multiple manufacturers, but we can’t forget the hot hatchback. The prospect of a functional, practical car that can go fast around corners is appealing on many levels, but Toyota is poised to take the category to new heights in the United States. The GR Corolla is a rally sedan with an advanced All-Wheel Drive (AWD) system and aggressive styling.

The car shares much of its underlying engineering with the smaller GR Yaris sedan available in other markets around the world. The small, turbocharged 3-cylinder engine produces a whopping 300 horsepower, and the car’s AWD system can move the power to the wheels that need it most.

Unlike the standard Corolla, which is mass-produced on an assembly line, technicians at the Gazoo Racing factory in Motomachi, Japan build the GR. The facility produced the Lexus LFA and new Supra and now houses a production line for the GR Corolla and Yaris. Think of the GR factory as something of a flagship production facility for Toyota, and the automaker notes that GR cars take longer to build due to the level of attention required by each. The GR Corolla will land later in 2022 as a 2023 model. A first-year Circuit Edition will debut in 2023.

What’s new for the 2023 Toyota GR Corolla?

  • An all-new performance hatchback for the United States
  • 300 hp 1.6-liter turbocharged 3-cylinder engine
  • Standard AWD with power distribution settings
  • GR Corolla Core trim debuts first, later in 2022
  • The limited-production Circuit Edition will be available in 2023

Exterior of the 2023 Toyota GR Corolla

2023 Toyota GR Corolla Core Red rear view

The 2023 Corolla GR shares a platform with the standard Corolla, so its exterior dimensions are likely to be very similar to the “normal” car. Large fender flares and aggressive vents accentuate the sedan’s shape, and Toyota fitted the car with a gaping front fascia that exposes the intercooler. The GR rolls on gloss black 18-inch wheels wrapped in Michelin Pilot Sport 4 tires; the Circuit edition gets red brake calipers with the GR logo.

Looking at the GR, there are a few key differences between it and its more pedestrian counterpart. Large fender flares accent all four corners and gloss black accents adorn the side mirrors and rear spoiler. The Circuit Edition gets a carbon fiber roof and a unique hood with a prominent power bulge.

Toyota shaped the shape of the GR Corolla with aerodynamics in mind, and unlike many cars, the air vents and shapely bodywork all serve a legitimate purpose. The car’s hood, roofline, and rear spoiler direct air around the body to create better downforce, and canards (small aerodynamic accents) send air to the sides of the vehicle .

Interior of the 2023 Toyota GR Corolla

Interior dashboard Toyota GR Corolla Circuit Edition 2023

The GR Corolla Core trim comes with fabric upholstery with gray stitching and GR badging on the headrests. Black and silver accents adorn the cabin. The Circuit Edition interior features upgraded suede and synthetic leather upholstery, with black/red accents and GR badging on the headrests. Both versions are equipped with aluminum sport pedals and illuminated footrests.

Specifications of the 2023 Toyota GR Corolla

Like the GR Yaris before it, the GR Corolla aims to bring some rally magic to the streets. It shares the Yaris’ 1.6-liter turbocharged 3-cylinder engine, but there’s one big difference: Toyota has upped engine power from 257 hp and 265 lb-ft of torque in the Yaris to 300 hp and 273 lb. -pi for use in the larger Corolle GR. The engine features a single-scroll turbo mounted on the exhaust manifold, which Toyota says reduces weight and uses exhaust gases more efficiently.

The GR gets a 6-speed manual transmission as its only gearbox choice; it sends power to all four wheels. The Toyota Gazoo Racing World Rally Team helped develop the car’s GR-Four AWD system, which offers settings for various driving conditions in dirt, snow and rain. The driver can choose between torque distribution settings that allow the car to send up to 70% of the power to the rear wheels. Circuit Edition cars get a Torsen Limited-Slip Differential (LSD) at both ends, which helps transmit power to the ground. The Core model comes standard with open differentials, but is available with LSDs as part of a Performance package.

2023 Toyota GR Corolla Safety

The 2022 Corolla has earned a Top Safety Pick+ rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). Although the IIHS is unlikely to test the low-volume Corolla GR, the two models are structurally similar, so the GR will likely perform the same as the standard Corolla in terms of crash protection. Both GR trims will come standard with Toyota Safety Sense 3.0, the automaker’s latest suite of advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS), as well as blind-spot warning and rear cross-traffic warning. A one-year trial of Toyota’s Safety Connect system is also standard, bringing emergency assistance, roadside assistance and a stolen vehicle locator.

Technology Toyota GR Corolla 2023

The GR Corolla comes standard with an 8-inch touchscreen that runs Toyota’s new infotainment interface, which the automaker says offers more intuitive and responsive operation than previous software. Users can interact with the system using voice, touch and sight, and simple voice commands can do everything from entering a navigation destination to changing weather settings. Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are standard, and Toyota promises over-the-air updates to improve map data and keep it current.

The Core version is available with a Technology Package that includes a JBL audio system, Qi wireless charging, and navigation. Circuit Edition cars come standard with an 8-speaker JBL stereo and navigation system. Both versions come with a trial subscription to a Wi-Fi hotspot service using the AT&T network.

Competitors of the 2023 Toyota GR Corolla

The 2023 Toyota GR Corolla competes with the Honda Civic Si, Hyundai Veloster N and Volkswagen Golf R. Depending on its price, buyers can also cross the Audi S3/RS 3 or Mercedes-AMG GLA 45 with the Toyota .

Toyota is the source of information in this article. It was accurate as of March 31, 2022, but may have changed since that date. Always confirm product details and availability with the car manufacturer‘s website or your local dealership.

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