Toyota’s Gazoo Making Hybrids Sporty

Toyota’s Gazoo Racing team is launching a line of performance cars and parts, and Toyota’s hybrids aren’t getting left out.

Gazoo Racing is the part of Toyota that manages, appropriately, racing. The team handles Toyota’s World Rally Championship efforts, the brand’s sports cars at Le Mans and the Nurburgring 24 hours, and even off-roaders in the Dakar Rally.

Now it is introducing road cars. The top models will be dubbed GRMN, for Gazoo Racing, Masters of the Nurburgring. The only slated GRMN is an upcoming hot-hatch Yaris. But underneath the top models will be the GR line and GR Sport. Those cars will see Gazoo performance parts added, like sport seats, revised suspensions, and upgraded brakes. The cars will have exterior touches too, like new grills, graphics, and body kits.

SEE ALSO: Toyota Planning High-Performance Hybrids

And, the Gazoo racing touch will add that extra performance to Toyota’s hybrid models, not just the gas-only cars. The Vitz (Yaris hatch), Aqua (Prius C), Prius, and Prius α (Prius V) will all get the modifications and parts.

The Vitz GR Sport will get Sachs dampers, added structural braces, and even extra welding. It will have 10 selectable ratios in the CVT, and a smaller diameter steering wheel, in addition to trim and appearance changes inside and out. The Aqua (Prius c in U.S.) will also have extra bracing, more spot welding, a special suspension, and cosmetic changes. The Prius and Prius α get new suspensions, extra bracing, exterior changes, and more.

The GR Sport models see lots of suspension and chassis changes, but don’t get extra power. Not yet, at least. But Toyota has said that it is planning on making more sporting hybrid drivetrains.

The Gazoo Racing models will roll out over the next few months at dealers and Gazoo Racing GR Garage shops in Japan. While there are no plans yet to offer them officially in America, Gazoo parts will be sold separately, so could be ordered by anyone wanting to add some zip to their Prius.


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