Toyota GR Aygo X could become hyper small hatch

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99 toyota gr aygo x render by autocar lead

Uprated Toyota small hatch could join GR 86, GR Yaris and GR Supra in growing GR line-up.

A hot version of the high-riding new Aygo X is on the cards to rival the likes of the Suzuki Swift Sport and Volkswagen Up GTI as Toyota continues to expand its GR-badged performance line-up.

Asked by us if the new SUV-style city car could be uprated to serve as an entry point into the expanding GR family, Toyota’s Europe vice president, Andrea Carlucci, refused to rule out the possibility.

While acknowledging that he could not be specific about Toyota’s future products, he said: “Whatever our plans, this car may deserve looking at the chassis, the body rigidity – the potential in making a more sporty version.

“Let’s be clear: it’s not in our plans, but you will discover yourself and maybe comment to help us understand how much potential you see in that.”

Carlucci also said of a GR version: “Never say never.”

Toyota CEO and keen motorsport enthusiast Akio Toyoda has a well-documented affinity for fast cars. His efforts to rebuild the Japanese brand’s reputation for accessible performance has quickly resulted in a family of dedicated sports cars, including the acclaimed GR Yaris, GR Supra and GR 86.

If there were deemed to be a viable business case for it, a GR Aygo X would serve as an entry point into this line-up, with pricing and performance specs that would slot the car between the standard Aygo X and GR Yaris. Given that it fundamentally shares a platform with the GR Yaris already, that car’s turbocharged 1.6-litre triple could find its way into a hot Aygo X, but its 192kW output would likely be excessive in the A-segment.

Irrespective of powertrain, the priorities for any performance derivative, as Carlucci suggested, would be tightening the handling, so sportier suspension, bigger brakes, a motorsport-inspired aero package and various weight-saving measures would be among the upgrades.

While hinting at future derivatives, Toyota poured cold water on the short-term likelihood of a hybrid version. It said the inevitable extra weight and cost would change the Aygo X’s positioning. It also highlighted that the non-electrified 1.0-litre petrol triple already matches most similar-capacity mild-hybrid powertrains for fuel economy.

Felix Page

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