Yaris GRMN Reviews Are In, Here's What Automotive Publications Are Saying - Toyota Yaris GRMN Forum
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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 01-31-2018, 06:23 PM Thread Starter
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Yaris GRMN Reviews Are In, Here's What Automotive Publications Are Saying


It all starts with the Lotus-tuned supercharged 4 cylinder engine that has attributed to a lot of this products success. Where the Yaris GRMN lacks in torque it makes up in how high and smooth it revs right up to 7000 RPM with peak torque coming in at 184lb ft. Out the other end is its throaty sounding exhaust which makes no effort to hide the fact its a smaller displacement setup. While not being an amazingly fast car, there's no doubt its a hot hatch that delivers on enough power in situations most owners will realistically put it in. For perspective, most everyone that has been in the Fiesta ST and Focus ST places the Yaris GRMN with them or right above. A next generation model could take the crown in this segment.

That Lotus-tuned engine certainly proves a fine advert for the road less travelled where a fairly light hot hatch is concerned, and it's perfectly at home in a car that loses little for not being the most brutally fast thing from point to point. The Yaris GRMN doesn’t have the low-down torque to bludgeon its way down short straights with the vigour of something more powerful and expensive, but its engine responds very crisply, revs with rapacious zip all the way to its 7000rpm redline and makes the accelerator feel like it operates in an entirely analogue and linear dimension (unlike that of so many big-boosted turbo rivals).
- AutoCar.co.uk

The engine makes a wonderfully unruly noise and the steering is satisfying too (although it does get oddly heavy when you load up the front tyres) and the reinforced gearshift snicks nicely between its ratios.
The Yaris GRMN reminds us what hot hatches used to be about – unfussy, uncomplicated machines with the biggest engine possible crammed under the bonnet and suitable chassis reinforcements to ensure the handling matched the performance.
The GRMN is not a particularly quick car, and there’s no real kick to the power delivery, it just builds progressively, but even removing a passenger makes it feel considerably fleeter – testament to the bigger impact removing weight from an already light car has. Either way, you have to work it hard to access its peak torque of 184lb ft at a high 5000rpm – none of the low-down juice of turbo power here.
- CarMagazine.co.uk


To complement the high revving powertrain is an approach to handling that Toyota has perfected with a set of aggressive Bridgestone Potenza tires mounted to 17-inch alloy wheels. These tires along with the Sachs dampers and a stiffened chassis propels the Yaris GRMN through twisty challenging turns. While it has great handling, Motor1 reports we will experience some understeer as you typically experience with FWD vehicles pushed to similar limits. What its like to drive every day where owners would is what we're interested to hear in the coming weeks and months.

It's just as much of a laugh on the road, too. On the standard Bridgestone rubber that Toyota provides, the Yaris GRMN slingshots through fast bends with the same vigour and confidence that it delivers in tight, technical hairpins, albeit with a bit more understeer than you'd get in the best front-drive hot hatches. The fancy Sachs dampers and the extreme chassis stiffening have really paid off, too, making the Yaris a fluid, entertaining, bombastic little hatch on any kind of road.

Those dampers even keep the ride from being uncomfortable, too. This is certainly a firm car, but it’s composed and supple enough to make life easy on the motorway or around town, where the engine’s rorty boom might be more of a nuisance… Although probably not if you’re of a mind to buy a car that screams ‘look at me!’, and we can’t blame or judge you for that. We like shouty cars, too. For that reason, you might also forgive it the rather buzzy motorway manners, since otherwise this will be an easy car to live with.
- Motor1.com


On Road & Track

Although most owners will be driving these on the street with some track time on weekends, its on the track that the Yaris GRMN shines as you can expect. Although the automotive publications that tested these didn't release video coverage, what we understand is it remains firm through turns with a limited-slip differential that operates to ensure you get enough bite. Thus wheels spin is limited but with some slip if you really push it, could aid in its overall driving character.

But there’s an exciting rawness and charm too. At speed, the ride settles, so while it’s still firm, there’s enough compliance to ensure you won’t get bounced off the road, even on some badly rutted bits of road in the Eifel region. The GRMN was also tested on UK B roads to ensure the diff didn’t tug about on the crown of the road, Mk1 Focus RS-style.

The limited-slip diff wasn’t in the plan from the beginning due to the steering corruption that can be caused by such a component, but it works well. The front end isn’t as keen to bite as, say, the Peugeot Sport 208 GTi, but it does allow you to power on early through a bend, and while there is some understeer if you push hard, it’s progressive and helps telegraph the limits. It also helps contain wheelspin without tugging all over the road surface – apparently adding the front strut brace calmed this tendency considerably, as did a spec that allows for some slip at one wheel on low-grip surfaces and when high amounts of steering lock are applied.

With such a short-wheelbase and stiff suspension, the Yaris feels very keen to jig its torsion-beam rear end around; it helps agility and adds quite a dramatic edge to the drive, but your grandma would be off at the first roundabout.
- CarMagazine.co.uk

What They Don't Like

All those who were lucky enough to get one of the very few Yaris GRMN allocations shouldn't be disappointed but like every product you can find, its not perfect. Being a first attempt from Toyota it almost comes to no surprise, although probably better than what some other car makers could have done. Making the list of what journalists don't like is the driving position due to its limited adjustability, pedals that lack alignment, steering and a limited slip that could be more aggressive and finally a dull interior..

Yep. The steering is nice and light and quick enough too, but it is unnecessarily aggressive in its self-centring motions.

The driving position isn’t great – the seats hold you well and are comfortable, but they perch you up high, and the steering wheel adjustment is limited; that there’s been no attempt to match the front and rear seat trim also betrays a certain hastiness/lack of room to push the price up even further.

The pedals could be better aligned for heel-and-toe, and the gearshift shorter and tighter.

Considering there’s a proper mechanical limited-slip diff up front, the traction control is a little too eager to electronically snuff out wheelspin. In tighter corners, I also wanted a little more roll support from the front end – perhaps ambitious given the already very firm springs, but there you go.
- CarMagazine.co.uk

Our only real gripes are that the steering could be a touch more involving and doesn’t self-centre as quickly as you might like, and the gearshift is longer and more rubbery than this car deserves. We kept yearning for the stubby, slick shift of a Mazda MX-5 or Ford Fiesta ST. But none of that stops you from revelling in the Yaris GRMN's impressive charm and ability.
It needs to be good then, even with the rarity factor to boost its appeal. With that in mind, the interior might leave you a bit, well, whelmed. The dash is mostly an uninspiring flat grey, but it does come with all the stuff you want including sat-nav (albeit featuring rather rather clunky, old-fashioned software and graphics) and phone connectivity, while the dials are easy to read and the deep but comfortable sports seats are finished in lovely Alcantara.
- Motor1.com

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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 02-04-2018, 02:55 AM
Join Date: May 2017
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Main complaint across the board seems to be the steering wheel that centers aggressively, nothing that's too concerning and everything else more than makes up for it.
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