2023 Toyota GR Corolla: Everything We Know So Far

The 2023 Toyota GR Corolla is an example of the brand's continued promise of making exciting cars, though while shedding the brand's reputation for tepid, sane motoring. Toyota unveiled the GR Yaris hot hatch in Europe and the rest of the world in 2020, and the motoring planet has never been the same. While the GR Yaris remains a sacred fruit among potential American buyers, Uncle Sam got the new BMW Z4-based MkV GR Supra and the updated GR 86 sports car. Still, there's a problem: The GR Yaris has standard all-wheel-drive, and it's about time America got a taste of a genuine rally-bred pocket rocket that won't break the bank.

Toyota started teasing us with the GR Corolla in 2021, and it immediately got the approval of American enthusiasts pining for the latest hot Toyota. The Japanese automaker has yet to unveil all the juicy deets about its latest American-bound hot hatch. However, we know enough about the 2023 GR Corolla to declare it the most highly anticipated sporty Toyota to arrive after the Supra's debut in 2019.

Turbocharged three-cylinder engine

The best thing about the 2023 Toyota GR Corolla is the hardware. It's essentially a GR Yaris trapped in a more considerable hatchback body, particularly a Corolla Hatchback with strengthened GA-C underpinnings. Under the hood lies the same G16E-GTS three-cylinder turbocharged 1.6L gas engine as the GR Yaris, but there's a twist: The GR Corolla's engine pumps out 300 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque, 32 more horses, and seven more torques than in a GR Yaris. The power hike is a welcome addition since the GR Corolla is 430 pounds heavier than the smaller three-door Yaris.

According to Toyota, the GR Corolla's blown three-cylinder mill delivers instant acceleration with peak torque at 3,000 to 5,500 rpm. Meanwhile, max horsepower is yours at 6,500 rpm. The engine breathes through an innovative triple exhaust system like a Honda Civic Type R. Toyota claims the all-aluminum exhaust construction saves weight and reduces engine backpressure significantly to maximize power delivery.

GR-Four AWD and manual gearbox

The new Toyota GR Corolla's potent three-cylinder engine sends power to all four wheels using a rally-derived GR-Four all-wheel drivetrain, which gives the driver control over the power distribution between the front and rear wheels. You can shift between Normal, Sport, and Track mode to adjust the front/rear torque split to 60:40, 30:70, or 50:50, respectively.

In addition, the GR Corolla will arrive exclusively with a six-speed manual gearbox like the GR Yaris. However, you can't get a sport-tuned CVT or a dual-clutch automatic like in a Hyundai Veloster N. If you want an automatic transmission, try the Corolla Apex Edition with lowered suspension and a naturally-aspirated 169-horsepower 2.0-liter four-banger. But with the new GR Corolla, it's manual or bust.

All that luscious hardware lies beneath a 2.6-inch widebody kit to give the GR Corolla a more aggressive and planted stance. Suspension duties are courtesy of MacPherson front and double-wishbones in the rear with unique Gazoo Racing coil springs, dampers, and stabilizer bars.

Toyota GR Corolla Core and Circuit Edition

The 2023 Toyota GR Corolla will arrive in two grades: Core and Circuit Edition. The GR Corolla Core trim is first to come in the latter part of 2022 and is available in black, white, or red paint. Other features include a color-keyed roof, fender flares, GR side rockers, a rear lip spoiler, and GR fabric sports seats.

On the other hand, the GR Corolla Circuit Edition is a limited-run model arriving in 2023 and is only available during the 2023 model year. The Circuit Edition has a forged carbon-fiber roof, vented hood bulges, a more prominent rear spoiler, and suede sport seats with red accents. Additionally, the Circuit Edition gets Torsen front and rear limited-slip differentials and an exclusive shift knob signed by Toyota CEO and master driver Akio Toyoda. The available paint colors for the GR Corolla Circuit Edition include red, white, or heavy metal gray.

Standard across the Core and Circuit Editions are 18-inch alloy wheels wrapped in Michelin Pilot Sport 4 tires and four-piston front with four-piston rear brakes. Other goodies include a 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, Apple CarPlay and Android connectivity, and a mechanical parking brake, an essential tool that allows you to engage in fantastic power slides.

Toyota has yet to divulge the pricing, other specs, and a list of additional standard and safety features for its newest GR Corolla. Car and Driver said the base prices could linger at about $30,000 for the Core variant and under $40,000 for the Circuit Edition. Considering a 2022 VW Golf R starts at $43,645, the GR Corolla has many aces to make American enthusiasts forget the GR Yaris' absence on American soil.