Saturday, May 18, 2024

The brilliance of the Toyota GR Yaris and why ‘hooning’ is allowed


What I suspected was the case with the Toyota GR Yaris has turned out to be about proper. 

“It’s no marvel I’ve had correspondence from individuals with massive automotive collections who drive a Yaris day-after-day,” I wrote in 2021 after spending just a few months dwelling with one and discovering that it supplied a driving expertise so particular that it could please individuals who may afford relatively greater than the £29,995 the recent hatchback price.

And final month, Toyota offered me with some knowledge backing that up: 48% of GR Yaris homeowners personal one as an ‘further automotive’, when the category common is just round 10%.

Many have a GR Yaris “subsequent to a supercar”, mentioned a delighted chief engineer Naohiko Saito. “That is one thing we’ve by no means seen earlier than.”

Given this, and that Toyota has bought 100% extra GRs than it had anticipated to by now, it’s little marvel that it has felt emboldened not solely to place the automotive via a facelift however to recommend that it’ll make it a everlasting fixture within the vary – for so long as it’s nonetheless capable of promote it.

“This isn’t the top of growth,” mentioned Saito on the occasion the place I drove a pre-production instance of the facelifted automotive.

“Smells and noise are one thing we don’t wish to quit. We wish to make sports activities vehicles for the subsequent 100 years.”

By the top of this decade, although, 80% of latest vehicles bought within the UK have to be zero-emissions, and whereas it has solely a 1.6-litre engine, the GR Yaris isn’t a type of.

Nonetheless, I reside in hope of an extended existence – and that Toyota resists the temptation to hike the value an excessive amount of, now that it is aware of the wherewithal of many patrons.

Extra excitable quotes, though much less joyful ones, come from ABC Information in Canberra. The Road Machine Summernats automotive occasion has come to city, and with it has come “moron tourism”, in line with Mark Richardson, Australian Capital Territory’s performing inspector of highway policing.

Australia has some strict anti-hooning legal guidelines – hooning being the phrase for “any delinquent behaviour in a motor automotive”, in line with the authorities – however they don’t dissuade semi-organised burnout occasions.

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