Toyota set for new performance brand

Toyota Hybrid-R front
11 Sep, 2013 10:21am Luke Madden

Toyota's executive vice president reveals why the manufacturer may get its own performance brand soon

Toyota may have its own performance brand within the next couple of years, as revealed by Karl Schlicht, executive vice president at Toyota Europe.

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Following the unveiling of the Yaris-based Hybrid-R concept at the Frankfurt Motor Show, Schlicht told Auto Express that the company is “Currently discussing sport lines for Toyota models”.

Frankfurt Motor Show 2013 

He went on to say that he believes there is “An appetite for Toyota to do credible performance cars”. Schlicht was keen to point out that the Hybrid-R was nothing more than a concept. Nevertheless with Toyota’s expertise in hybrid technology, the R’s petrol-electric performance powertrain seems like a sensible route to take.

The new performance cars could also wear the TMG badge after Toyota Motorsport GmbH, the company that prepares all of Toyota’s racing cars. As well as its new performance brand Schlicht went on to say that a new flagship Supra replacement is still a consideration, and a convertible version of the GT86 is still yet to be decided upon.

Toyota is also working on a new TNGA (Toyota New Global Architecture) that will underpin its future car line-up. The new architecture will debut in the new Prius – due in 2015 – but when asked if it could underpin everything from an iQ to an Avensis, Toyota bosses replied that it would be theoretically possible to some extent.

It’s all part of Toyota’s commitment to build a better range of cars, as Schlicht revealed: “Beyond the cost-saving benefits, you’ll also get a more rigid chassis and you’ll be sitting lower in the car”. Using TNGA across all models will also allow technology developed for larger cars to also slot in to smaller cars more easily.

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Surely the toyota performance brand is TRD??

The last month we spent looking at B-Segment cars to replace my partner's Fiesta and we looked at almost all the available cars without bias.

The fastest Yaris we found was the 1.33L petrol covering the 0-62 sprint in a measly 11.7 seconds. That's not even fast, not to mention sporty.

A global giant like Toyota is pipped by almost all the makers. And I don't mean Ford, Peugeot, Renault, Vauxhall and VW only. Even Kias are faster.

To cut the long short, Toyota certainly needs halo or performance models to inject life in its line-up. Not everyone is content with 1L and 1.3L engines.

Not everyone wants a sports coupe either. Hot versions of family hatchbacks not only boost the car's desirability, they also sell rather well.

Agree with this. I feel Toyota deperately need sporty versions of their mainstream model lineup like the Yaris and Auris. Not everyone wants/can afford a £25k GT86. Strange thing is they even used to offer stuff like the Yaris 1.5T sport and 1.8SR. Where are these models now? Toyota certainly make a quality car but the driving experience offered by even top spec Yaris/Auris models is too dull for enthusiast buyers.....

Toyota Carina E GTI....

I had both of those cars (still have the 1.8SR) and loved them both,
especially the TS. There is nothing even remotely suitable as a
replacement from Toyota now.

"Within the next two years"? That *would* be a surprise but here's hoping, they desperately need it.

Wouldn't it have been easier just to purchase, Lotus? It's what was needed to take Toyota to a higher level. Also they could have funded and put into production that great line up from the 2010 Paris motorshow.

Toyota...Always reliable...Always boring.

Thing is they basically own Subaru and are in a relationship with BMW so shouldn't they be able to inject some exitement into the brand? We got the GT86 as Subaru joint development and supposedly a new Supra will result from their ties with BMW. Some hot mainstream models needed though.