With exciting recent products such as the Supra, Yaris GRMN, and Corolla Hatchback now on sale, Toyota is hoping to change its image from a boring and reliable marque to a youthful and modern brand. This is going to be a slow process that’s likely to take at least a few years but, thankfully, it probably means a couple of more sports cars with a Toyota logo could be on their way.
Nothing can be confirmed at the moment, but the company’s boss hinted about more possible additions to the Gazoo Racing performance lineup. Speaking to Autocar at the 2019 North American International Auto Show in Detroit earlier this month, Akio Toyoda said the Supra probably won’t be the last sports car from Toyota in the coming years.
“SUVs are nice but, at the end of the day, is there anything better than a tight rear-wheel-drive sports car? I hope this won’t be the last Toyota sports car you see from us in the future,” he told the publication shortly after the debut of the revived Supra.
In recent months, we’ve heard rumors about potential ideological successors to the Celica and MR2, but it’s more likely that Toyota would begin its sports car offensive with GR versions of the GT86, Yaris, and the new Corolla Hatch. The latter is believed to receive a hot hatch version powered by a hybridized 2.0-liter turbo engine good for around 250 horsepower (186 kilowatts).
If the automaker’s executives give the idea of expanding the GR sports car lineup the green light, expect to see the new offerings on the market relatively soon. Toyota now has the modular TNGA platform which makes developing new bodies with different performance parameters significantly easier than before. With the TNGA, the manufacturer hopes it “will be able to reduce some of the development time."
Note: Toyota MR-2 rendering by Esa Mustonen used as a lead image.