2023 Toyota GR Corolla Morizo Edition debuts – 304 PS and 400 Nm; no rear seats; limited production run – paultan.org
After getting everyone excited with the debut of the Toyota GR Corolla in April, the Japanese carmaker is giving enthusiasts another reason to start drooling again. Say hello to the new GR Corolla Morizo Edition, which features a few significant improvements to deliver even more dynamic performance than the regular GR Corolla.
Developed with input from Toyota president and master driver Akio Toyoda, who is also known by his racing alter ego, Morizo, the Corolla Morizo Edition will be offered in limited numbers that vary depending on the market it is sold in. For the United States, just 200 units will be offered for the 2023 model year, while in Japan, an undisclosed number of units will be offered via a reservation lottery planned for this fall.
So, what makes the Morizo Edition special besides its limited production run? As a start, Toyota fiddled with the G16E-GTS 1.6 litre turbocharged three-cylinder petrol engine, so it now serves up an extra 30 Nm of torque for a total of 400 Nm, while making the same 304 PS (300 hp) at 6,500 rpm.
Accompanying the uprated G16E-GTS is the same GR-Four all-wheel drive system with three selectable modes and six-speed manual transmission with rev-matching function, although the latter gets closer ratios for the first, second and third gears.
Similarly, the front and rear Torsen limited-slip differentials come shorter gears. With these drivetrain changes, the Morizo Edition’s peak torque is available across a narrower rev range (3,250 to 4,600 rpm) compared to a regular GR Corolla that serves up 370 Nm from 3,000 to 5,550 rpm.
As for other driving-related items, the Morizo Edition uses the same front MacPherson struts and rear double wishbones, although they are now paired with red-painted monotube dampers specifically tuned for the model. The braking system is carried over intact, with ventilated discs measuring 457 mm at the front (four-pot calipers) and 406 mm at the rear (two-piston calipers).
Besides the powertrain changes, the Toyota engineers also increased the Morizo Edition’s body rigidity by applying an additional 3.3 metres of structural adhesive and adding body reinforcement braces for increased rigidity.
You’ll spot two of these braces inside the cabin behind the front seats in the space where the rear seats used to be. That’s right, the Morizo Edition is strictly a two-seater, making it a lot less practical than the normal GR Corolla that can accommodate five passengers.
However, without the rear seats, Toyota says there’s ample space to fit four tyres for a track day, so some practicality is clawed back. The decision to forgo rear seats was done to save weight, and when put on a scale, the Morizo Edition weighs just 1,440 kg, or 30 kg less than a Japanese-market GR Corolla RZ (more on that later). In the US, the Morizo Edition is nearly 45 kg (100 pounds) lighter at 1,445 kg (3,186 pounds) than the GR Corolla Circuit Edition, which is 1,493 kg (3,292 pounds).
Visually, the Morizo Edition looks a lot like a GR Corolla, with returning cues like a vented bonnet (standard for the Circuit Edition), a carbon-fibre roof, flared fenders, triple exhausts and functional brake ducts.
However, there are some differences that aren’t immediately obvious. For starters, the Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 mounted to the BBS 18-inch forged wheels are 10 mm wider, with a profile of 245/40 for cornering performance and high-speed stability. Look closely at the front windshield and you’ll also discover that it bears Morizo’s signature.
On the inside, there are semi-bucket seats trimmed in Ultrasuede and leather with a red and black theme, along with an Ultrasuede-wrapped steering wheel with a red 12 o’clock marker. Elsewhere, the cabin trim is finished in cast-black paint coalesce, and the gear shift knob gets a red ring accent.
The announcement of the Morizo Edition coincides with the market launch of the GR Corolla RZ in Japan, which will also take place this fall. Unlike the Morizo Edition, customers won’t have to enter a reservation lottery to buy one.
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