Call it another case of sick cars we will never be able to get in the US, but I really want this car. A factory turbocharged car from Toyota? Sign me up. This would be the ideal daily driver, not to mention a potential rival for the Mini Cooper S. Aside from being compact, fuel efficient, and practical, this Vitz (Yaris to us) comes with an LSD, lowered sports tuned suspension, OZ Racing wheels, Recaro seats, and a turbo setup from TRD and Toyota's in-house tuner, Modellista. If this motor is anything like factory turbocharged Toyota motors in the past, this will be one tiny car with giant potential. If they don't offer this car to us Americans, I'm moving to Japan.
Unveiled at recent Tokyo Auto Salon - a motor show that gives Japanese makers the chance to let their hair down - the Turbo Modellista is set to go on sale in its home market in the next few months, and previews a European version. Based on the Japan-only Yaris RS, it uses a 1.5-litre engine turbocharged Modellista, and Toyota Racing Development (TRD).
Power is increased by 40bhp to 150bhp at 6,000rpm, and with 196Nm of torque, the newcomer should cover 0-60mph in less than eight seconds on its way to a 135mph top speed.
The looks are enhanced by a muscular bodykit, with large intakes at the front to feed air into the intercooler, plus 17-inch OZ Racing alloys. Inside, the Turbo Concept gets specially designed instrumentation, which includes a turbo boost gauge, plus a leatherbound steering wheel and gearknob.