Now, first things first. Before Oppo goes off tap and says they never went away because of the Golf GTI...they actually did.
You don’t have to look back far to see that the original iterations of what many would call a hot hatch have bloated a bit from their original subcompact dimensions.
Europe still gets quite a selection of super minis...as does Japan. But the rest of us get the ubiquitous Golf plus the occasional Fiat or some Japanese, Korean or Euro outsider like the Suzuki Swift or VW Polo GTI. Even then...they can still be a bit mild.
This is where Toyota and Gazoo Racing come in. They want to get back into World Rally and they’ve apparently decided to use the new Yaris to do it. Bear in mind that this Yaris is the RoW version rather than the US version. It’s probably got all sorts of mad specifications (1.8 turbo 4, AWD etc) and should be able to go around corners at speed...but that’s not the important bit.
The important bit is they will have to make 25,000 of them. And then sell them. The Yaris is much smaller than the Golf and has much more in common size wise with the original Golf GTI. The other thing is that, unlike many subcompact cars, the new Yaris is available in most markets (except North America where they get a superseded budget rebadge because no-one there wants to pay full price for an up to date tiddler).
So, could this not so mild Yaris be the restart of something or is the hot hatch still destined to truly die?