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Watch the Fiery Toyota GR Yaris Out-Drag a Honda Civic Type R

Road & Track logo Road & Track 2020-12-04 Mack Hogan
a police car parked in a parking lot: It may be down on power, but in a wet-weather race the all-wheel-drive Toyota has the Type R beat. © Carwow on YouTube It may be down on power, but in a wet-weather race the all-wheel-drive Toyota has the Type R beat.

The Toyota GR Yaris is our staff's current favorite forbidden fruit car. It's a powerful, purpose-built homologation rally hatch that's both exciting and attainable, but not for U.S. customers. For us, the best you can get is either a Hyundai Veloster N or a Honda Civic Type R. The latter of which—a video from Carwow shows—can't keep up with the GR Yaris in the wet.

Replay Video

That makes sense, since the GR Yaris has a rally-bred all-wheel-drive system and the Civic is exclusively front-wheel drive. Even still, it's nice to see the pugnacious little 257-hp Toyota inching ahead of the more established, potent, 306-hp honda. It certainly helps that it's about 220 lbs lighter.


Things do change if you run the race from a roll. There, the Civic is less grip-limited and able to make better use of its 39-hp advantage. It's not an embarrassing showing by the Yaris, but it's clear that it doesn't quite have the force of the Civic as you get toward triple-digit speeds. Its 1.6-liter three cylinder isn't built for that work.

Really, drag racing was never going to be the Yaris' game. Estimates from Honda and Toyota show that the Yaris is 0.5 seconds slower to 60 on dry pavement and—given how the Honda pulls harder at high speeds—it's not hard to imagine the Honda stomping the Yaris in favorable conditions. But that hardly matters. The Yaris is built for attacking rally stages and flying through tight corners—its light weight and tidy wheelbase making it agile and tossable. That may not be a recipe for drag race success, but clearly it can hold its own in the wet.

Via Motor1.


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