The Honda Civic Type R and Toyota GR Yaris both offer buyers high-performance turbocharged engines, a manual gearbox, and chassis tuning for sharp cornering. A major difference between them is that Toyota is all-wheel drive, but the Honda only powers the front wheels. See what a difference this makes in a drag race in this video.
The specs for the Civic Type R in the United States are that its 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder produces 315 horsepower and 310 pound-feet of torque. The only gearbox choice is a six-speed manual with automatic rev-matching. It rides on three-mode adaptive dampers.
Gallery: 2023 Honda Civic Type R: First Drive
The GR Yaris packs a 1.6-liter turbocharged three-cylinder that produces 257 hp (this video quotes the 261 metric hp output) and 266 lb-ft of torque. Like the CTR, the only gearbox is a six-speed manual. However, Toyota is working on an automatic for it. This one has the Circuit Pack that adds limited-slip differentials on both axles. The all-wheel-drive system has Normal, Sport, and Track modes that vary the front-rear torque distribution.
The GR Yaris has less power than the Civic Type R but weighs less and has all-wheel drive. In the drag race, it launches better off the line. The Honda eventually begins gaining on the Toyota, but this is too little too late to beat the rival hot hatch.
The next race has both cars rolling at low speeds, which mitigates the GR Yaris' traction advantage. It makes a big difference because the Civic wins this time.
They repeat this but start from 30 miles per hour. Without the advantage of an all-wheel-drive launch, the GR Yaris can't keep up with the more powerful Civic Type R. Going from 50 mph is a repeat performance.
While the United States doesn't get the GR Yaris, the GR Corolla is available in the country. Buyers still get a 1.6-liter turbocharged three-cylinder making 300 hp and 273 lb-ft of torque. For the 2024 model, Toyota plans to bring 1,500 examples with the Circuit Edition pack to the US.