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Expert Rating

Toyota GR Yaris

Our unique Expert Rating Index combines scores from 30 of the top UK motoring websites to give you a definitive rating on every new car

Expert Rating

Summary


The Toyota GR Yaris is a small, high-performance hatchback that is only very loosely based on the regular Toyota Yaris model. It started development as a rally homologation model, but a change in the sport’s regulations means it will never compete. Instead, it’s only role is as a high-performance hot hatch for the road.

The GR Yaris was launched in late 2020 and immediately started racking up award wins, including pretty much every ‘Hot Hatch of the Year’ award on offer. It’s probably more accurate to think of it as an entirely different car to the regular Yaris – it shares only four exterior body parts with its namesake, and is lower and wider. It also sports the world’s most powerful three-cylinder engine, a one-litre unit pushing out 260hp via all four wheels.

The UK motoring media has been in raptures about the way the Toyota GR Yaris drives, with universal praise for its performance and handling. Criticisms have been generally minor, which is reflected in its exceptionally high Expert Rating of 91% based on 15 different UK reviews (as of November 2021). Incidentally, that’s the same score as a Porsche 911…

GR Yaris highlights

  • Incredibly fun driving experience
  • Attractive exterior styling
  • Very responsive four-wheel drive handling
  • Serious pace in a straight line
  • Toyota offer competitive finance deals

GR Yaris lowlights

  • Expensive compared to regular Yaris
  • Rather rigid ride comfort
  • Limited space in the rear
  • Poor rear visibility
  • Driving position a little to high

Key specifications


Body style: Small three-door hatch
Engines: petrol
Price: From £29,995 on-road

Launched: Winter 2020/21
Last updated: N/A
Replacement due: None expected


Media reviews


Reviews, road test and comparisons from across the UK automotive media. Click any of the boxes to view.

Auto Express

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Autocar

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Car

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Car Keys

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Carbuyer

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Carwow

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Daily Mail

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Eurekar

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Evo

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Parkers

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The Intercooler

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The Sun

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The Telegraph

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Top Gear

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What Car?

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Which?

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Safety rating


Independent crash test and safety ratings from Euro NCAP

No safety rating

As of October 2021, the Toyota GR Yaris hasn’t been crash tested by Euro NCAP.

We don’t think it’s ever likely to happen because of the car’s tiny production volumes. The GR Yaris doesn’t automatically carry the regular Yaris model’s safety rating as it’s had so many structural modifications that it’s essentially a completely different car. If it does ever get put through a Euro NCAP test programme, we will update this section accordingly.

Eco rating


Independent economy and emissions ratings from Green NCAP

No eco rating

The Toyota GR Yaris has not been lab tested by Green NCAP. This is a new initiative, launched in 2018 as a sister organisation to Euro NCAP. As yet, very few new cars have been tested for environmental impact by Green NCAP, and inevitably the testing programme was halted in early 2020 by the coronavirus pandemic before re-starting later in the year.

The GR Yaris is a high-performance homologation model, so it hasn’t been designed for maximum environmental performance, so it’s fairly safe to assume that it wouldn’t score too highly if it was ever tested.

Awards


Trophies, prizes and awards that the Toyota GR Yaris has received

2021

  • UK Car of the Year Awards – Car of the Year + Best Performance
  • carwow Awards – Car of the Year + Best Hot Hatch
  • What Car? Awards – Best Hot Hatch
  • Auto Express Awards – Best Performance Car
  • Parkers New Car Awards – Best Car for Thrill-seekers
  • News UK Motoring AwardsJeremy Clarkson’s Car of the Year + Best Hot Hatch

2020

  • Top Gear Awards – Best Hot Hatch
  • Evo Awards – Best Hot Hatch
  • Car Magazine Awards – Best Hot Hatch
  • Autocar Awards – Best Hot Hatch

Similar cars


If you’re looking at the Toyota GR Yaris, you might also be interested in these alternatives

Ford Fiesta ST | Honda Civic Type R | Hyundai i20 N | Mini hatch John Cooper Works | Suzuki Swift Sport | Volkswagen Polo GTI

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Best car rankings

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Best car rankings

Want to see how this car ranks against its rivals?

The Car Expert has the ultimate ranking of the best and worst new cars on sale, based on scores from 25 of the top UK motoring websites

Toyota GR YarisThe Toyota GR Yaris has received universal praise from UK reviews for its performance and handling, and has won a host of awards.