First the GR Yaris, then the GR Corolla, followed by the GR (bodykit) new Prius, and finally, that. Joining Toyota’s fray of zippy little Gazoo-branded hatchbacks is the Aqua, which is the Japanese market Prius C.
It has a 1.5-liter inline 3 with a hybrid system, but hold your horses, for this isn’t some mad 3-cylinder-pushing-upwards-of-250-horsepower kind of model. It makes 91 horses and 89 lb-ft of torque. That’s it. No performance upgrades, but there’s more to it; we’ll start with the obvious GR exterior, which includes a sportier looking front bumper, a small side skirt, a subtle, sportier wing, and the rear bumper, with inlets and chrome bits. GR emblems on the fenders and the blacked-out 17-inch hollowed five spokes finish the overall look.
We doubt drivers will find ways to have fun with a measly hybrid like the Aqua, but Toyota has made changes to the electric power steering and stiffened both rear and front suspensions for better cornering. The original suspension stays, however; it’s not like you’ll be cornering that hard. Adding to that is the reinforced rear bumper and bracing under the floor to provide further stability.
The GR Aqua also has a Power+ mode, which, contrary to what the name suggests, is actually a mode that allows for truer feedback from the steering wheel. Finally, the GR-branded front sport seats are covered in special fabric exclusive to the GR Sport family, aluminum pedals, leather-wrapped steering wheel, and gunmetal trims wrap up the insides.
The folks over at Gazoo Racing have yet to play around with Toyota’s hybrids, and it’s probably for the best; knowing the mindset of current CEO Akio Toyoda, they are probably aware that they are better off spending as much time with pure ICE models with what little time they have left. Though 91 hp isn’t quite enough for any shenanigans, at least the handling department’s somewhat taken care of. Perhaps the 3-cylinder has been left out to lure in the crafts of its owners..
p dir=”ltr”>(Images sourced from Toyota/Gazoo Racing)