How does TOYOTA GAZOO Racing squeeze even more excitement into the ultra-hot GR Corolla? Like any enthusiasts, they take it to the garage and figure out how to add power, reduce weight and enhance handling – all while keeping an eye on building a car that’s ready to jump from the street to the track. Then, after tweaking, testing and re-testing, they come away with a GR Corolla that can carry only one name: GR Corolla MORIZO Edition. Like the Core and Circuit Edition, the MORIZO Edition comes in at 300 horsepower, with torque bumped up to 295 lb.-ft. versus the 273 lb.-ft. available in its siblings. TOYOTA GAZOO Racing engineers retuned GR Corolla’s engine for additional power, with peak torque coming in at 3250-4600RPM. The MORIZO edition has an exclusive close ratio intelligent Manual Transmission (iMT) and shorter differential gears for satisfying acceleration across the power band. The purpose-built MORIZO Edition adds even more heat to Toyota’s GR lineup, which includes the performance ready GR Corolla Core Grade, launch-year-only Circuit Edition, as well as GR Supra and GR86. The MORIZO Edition was named for GR Master Driver and Toyota president Akio Toyoda. This track-oriented version of GR Corolla was designed to meet specifications desired by Toyoda himself, with tight handling, a high power-to-weight ratio and a highly rigid body. Only 200 numbered-units will be produced for model year 2023.
On the inside of the MORIZO Edition, drivers will find exclusive red and black Ultrasuede and leather sport seating with high bolsters and harness holes, and an Ultrasuede wrapped steering wheel with red sightline, shift knob and boot and parking brake lever. On the outside it features functional venting, with MORIZO exclusive front brake ducts, and the same forged carbon fiber roof, vented bulge hood and GR-Four stamped side rockers on the Circuit Edition, and aerodynamic features like a flat underfloor and rear lip spoiler. It will be available in Windchill Pearl and a MORIZO Edition exclusive NEW matte finished Gray and be built at the GR Factory at Toyota’s Motomachi Plant. MSRP for will be announced later this year with availability at Toyota dealerships in 2023. Two braces span the rear of the cabin for structural support, with ample space to fit four tires for a track day. It features the same 12.3-inch digital, color Multi-Information Display (MID) as the Core and Circuit Edition. Toyota’s new Multi-Media System with touchscreen and Toyota’s Safety Sense 3.0 (TSS 3.0) system come standard.
GR Engineers removed nearly 100 pounds of weight versus the GR Corolla Circuit Edition model, preliminary curb weight is estimated at 3,186 pounds (GR Corolla Circuit Edition preliminary curb weight is estimated at 3,292 pounds). Primary weight reduction came from the removal of the rear seats, a forged carbon fiber roof (also used on the GR Corolla Circuit Edition) and forged wheels. The two-seater design also allowed for additional weight removal in the rear, with no rear door speakers or rear window regulator, even the rear wiper blade and motor were pulled to save every ounce. GR engineers have also increased rigidity, with two additional floor braces and one additional rear strut brace, and its frame has an additional 349 spot welds and over six meters more structural adhesive than a standard Corolla hatch frame. The MORIZO Edition comes equipped with the GR-Four All Wheel Drive system, with selectable 30-70, 50-50, and 60-40 front-to-rear wheel power settings for custom control. Dual limited slip differentials come standard. For tight handling, the MORIZO edition has extra-wide grip, Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires mounted on 18-inch forged alloy wheels with an exclusive matte black finish and TOYOTA GAZOO Racing logo on the rim. It will be equipped with red-painted monotube shock absorbers and have unique suspension tuning for a precision driving feel fit for racing.
To achieve control worthy of the GR badge, a highly rigid body was specially constructed for GR Corolla. Based off the GA-C platform, it produced handling performance that rewards the driver. Enhanced rigidity comes from significantly more weld points in the frame, particularly to strengthen joints. Further gains are made through extensive use of structural adhesive, increasing the joint rigidity between component parts. Extra wide tread tires help ensure high cornering performance while maintaining the excellent high speed stability of the GR Corolla’s 103.9-inch long wheelbase. It has 10 more millimeters of tread width than its siblings and wears Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires that are mounted to 18″ forged alloy wheels. The front suspension is a MacPherson-type strut design that offers both light weight and firm handling, maximizing the tires’ grip potential. Made up of circuit-tuned coil springs, monotube shock absorbers and stabilizer bars, the front suspension is designed to deliver all the engine’s power to the road and provide optimum cornering capability on all surfaces. The rear suspension uses a double-wishbone type multilink system that accommodates the AWD system’s goal of maximum agility and stability. Braking power comes from opposed, fixed-caliper disc brakes with 14-inch x 1.1-inch ventilated and slotted rotors outfitted with 4-piston red painted, GR-logoed aluminum calipers. At the rear, 11.7-in. x 0.7-in. ventilated rotors with 2-piston aluminum fixed-caliper disc brakes with red-painted calipers and GR logo are standard.
For GR Corolla MORIZO grade, we took the same turbocharged G16E-GTS powerplant used in the GR Corolla and bumped the torque. Displacing 1,618 cubic centimeters, it produces a maximum power of 300 hp and 295 pound-feet of torque.
Compact and lightweight, the DOHC 12-valve engine features a single-scroll ball-bearing turbo that’s matched to a 6-speed intelligent manual transmission (iMT) with rev-matching engineered to accommodate high torque levels. TGR engineers adjusted the transmission gear ratios, differential gear ratio and engine tuning to support sustained acceleration at peak torque on the MORIZO edition. The turbocharger is integrated in the exhaust manifold, reducing weight, while control of wastegate bypass gases is used to improve the catalyst’s warm-up efficiency. The G16E also benefits from motorsport technologies that maximize performance, including multi-oil jet piston cooling, large-diameter exhaust valves and a part-machined intake port. Combustion is fed by Toyota’s D-4S direct and port fuel injection system, which operates at high pressure for maximum fuel dispersion and efficiency. This compact-yet-powerful three-cylinder engine has increased power for GR Corolla thanks to improved engine exhaust efficiency and a 3-piece muffler with valve capped off with brushed stainless steel tips. This design reduces exhaust pressure and outside noise, which are essential to backpressure performance.
The wide stance and broad hatch exterior design of GR Corolla MORIZO edition projects a strong, attack ready style with its black GR badged functional matrix grill. Flanked by functional air ducts on both sides, the front grille comes in gloss-black and features integrated LED fog lamps with auto on/off LED headlamps and LED DRLs standard. At the rear, it features a rear lower bumper cover with functional air vents finished in gloss black. The tapering of the roof and rear pillars are complimented by a high mounted matte-black rear spoiler. The wide track and flaring of the rear fenders emphasize the car’s wide and low silhouette. The MORIZO Edition features wide front and rear fender-flares and a bulge hood with functional gloss-black air ducts. Front brake cooling vents are also standard. The Carbon Fiber roof matched with a matte-black roof mounted shark fin antenna. Gloss-black heated power outside mirrors with turn signal indicators, gloss-black window molding and black GR Corolla badges are standard. On the MORIZO Edition, the roof is made of a forged (rather than woven) carbon sheet molding compound. This lightweight, highly rigid material keeps off the ounces that steel roof would bring and helps lower the car’s center of gravity. Aluminum is used for the hood and front door panels, with light and strong high-tensile steel in critical areas to help ensure the car’s structure can still safely absorb and dissipate impact forces.
In 2007, Akio Toyoda wanted to expand the company’s use of racing in its car development activities. As a starting point, he chose to compete in the 24 Hours of Nürburgring, the grueling endurance race held on the famous track winding through the German forest. It was an unofficial Toyota activity at the time, so the team was called GAZOO Racing and was made up of employees, including Akio Toyoda driving under the alias of MORIZO. As TOYOTA GAZOO Racing’s first wholly developed and manufactured model for the North American market, the GR Corolla carries this spirit forward. With a limited budget, the newly named team entered the race with two second-hand Altezzas. Despite adversity, both cars finished the challenging race, and a new era of Toyota motorsports and product development, one founded on a spirit of challenge aimed at instigating change, began. With professional drivers, experts and MORIZO at the wheel, GR Corolla was tested repeatedly at some of Japan’s leading circuits, including Fuji Speedway, Suzuka and Tsukuba Circuit. In addition, the GR team carried out heavy duty dirt and snow driving with a Japanese Rally Championship driver. To help meet the performance goals for the GR Corolla, Toyota has established a dedicated GR Factory at its production facility in Motomachi, Japan. It’s the birthplace of legends such as the Lexus LFA and Supra A80 and is now home to the first GR production line, where GR Corolla and GR Yaris are precision built.
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