Toyota Yaris WRC is Continuing a Great Story

  • Toyota Yaris WRC, Latvala, Argentina
  • Toyota Yaris WRC 2017
  • Toyota Yaris WRC, 2017
  • Toyota Yaris WRC 2017
  • Toyota Yaris WRC 2017

Toyota Yaris WRC is a World Rally Car designed and built by Toyota Gazoo Racing to compete in the FIA World Rally Championship, starting with the 2017 season.

Yaris WRC was built in compliance with the new-for-2017 FIA WRC technical regulations, together with other three 2017-spec World Rally Cars: Citroen C3, Ford Fiesta and Hyundai i20 Coupe. The main feature for all four cars are the 1.6-litre 4-cylinder turbo charged engine, similar to the previous generation World Rally Car’s engine, but boosted to 380 horse powers.

Toyota Yaris WRC, 2017, Rallye Monte-Carlo

Toyota Yaris WRC debuted at 2017 Rallye Monte-Carlo

Yaris marks Toyota’s return to WRC

Yaris WRC has a special place among the 2017-spec cars because it marks the return of Toyota to the World Rally Championship after 17 years, following team’s withdrawal from the championship at the end of 1999.

The project of Toyota’s return to the WRC started in 2014 when the first prototype of Yaris-based rally car underwent initial tests. A development of a car had few phases, with ups and downs. At the end, a project was assigned to the four-time world rally champion Tommi Mäkinen, who became a Team Principal of the Toyota Gazoo Racing World Rally Team.

Toyota Yaris WRC, Latvala, Sweden

Flying air conditioner? No, it’s Toyota Yaris WRC

Radical design and brutal engines of 2017-spec cars

Under Mäkinen ‘s guidance, the final version of a car had its first public appearance in the spring of 2016, during tests in Finland. The final design of a car was revealed in December 2016 at the ceremony in Helsinki, Finland.

Except for the powerful engines, which reminds rally fans to the age of brutal Group B rally cars back in the 1980s, new World Rally Cars feature aggressive design and exceptional aerodynamic packages. According to fans and media, Yaris WRC has the most radical design of all 2017-spec cars. Some say it’s ugly, others say it’s brutal, but nobody can’t say that Yaris WRC is inconspicuous.

Toyota Gazoo Racing, Toyota Yaris WRC

Japanese-German team with team boss and drivers from Finland

All-Finnish drivers’ line-up for Yaris WRC

Although Toyota Gazoo Racing is based in Germany, where is a headquarters of Toyota Motorsport GmbH, we could say that the team wasn’t Japanese or German but Finnish, because not only Team Principal is from Finland but all three drivers in the 2017 WRC season are from that Nordic country.

Toyota chose Jari-Matti Latvala to lead drivers’ line-up in the #10 Yaris WRC. The full-time driver in the #11 car is Juho Hänninen while the third driver, with a limited schedule in the #12 car, is Esapekka Lappi.

Maiden win for Yaris WRC - 2017 Rally Sweden

Maiden win for Yaris WRC – 2017 Rally Sweden

Latvala scored maiden win for Yaris at Rally Sweden

The maiden victory for the Yaris WRC came in the second round of the 2017 WRC season, at Rally Sweden in February. Jari-Matti Latvala won the event, scoring the first WRC win for Toyota since Didier Auriol’s triumph at China Rally in 1999. With that win, Yaris WRC joined the club of legendary Toyota vehicles which were winning in the world’s premier rally championship  – Corolla WRC and Celica GT-Four.

Toyota Yaris WRC specifications

Chassis/body3-door compact
Length4,085 mm
Width1,875 mm
Wheelbase2,511 mm
Weight1,190 kg
EngineInline 4-cylinder 1600cc, turbo charged
Power/tourque380 hp/425 Nm
Gearbox6-speed hydraulic shift
Transmission4-wheel drive, 2 x mechanical differentials, active center differential with torque split options
SuspensionMacPherson front and rear
BrakesGravel 300 mm air and liquid cooled, Tarmac 370 mm air and liquid cooled


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