Toyota is reportedly working on a sportier GRMN version of its fifth-generation Prius that could launch in Japan in 2024.
As reported by Japanese publication Best Car, this so-called Toyota Prius GRMN will be based on the plug-in hybrid (PHEV) variant which is currently the most powerful version.
That model is powered by a 2.0-litre PHEV powertrain that produces 164kW of power. It’s claimed to handle the 0-100km/h sprint in 6.7 seconds.
It’s possible the Prius GRMN could even have a bit more power thanks in part to some engine tuning, although exact outputs haven’t been confirmed yet.
Unnamed sources told Best Car it’s difficult to increase the power of the electric motor, and it’s focussing on tuning the 2.0-litre four-cylinder petrol engine instead.
Beyond the potential power bump, Toyota will reportedly add firmer suspension to reduce body roll, larger brakes, and more spot welds on the chassis to improve body rigidity.
It’ll likely also receive a number of sporty-looking body add-ons, like it already does as GR parts for the regular Prius in Japan.
The carmaker already does a number of these modifications on its range of GR and GR Sport models, including the Yaris Cross GR Sport, C-HR GR Sport, HiLux GR Sport, LandCruiser GR Sport, GR Yaris, and GR Corolla.
Toyota offered a GR Sport version of the previous, fourth-generation Prius PHEV in Japan which received suspension tweaks, additional bracing, as well as a number of sporty-looking elements.
Even if this sporty Toyota Prius GRMN goes into production, don’t expect it to come locally as the latest-generation model won’t be offered here. The fourth-generation model was axed from the local lineup last year.
Toyota has sold 5.05 million Prius’ since it entered production in 1997 but as hybrids have proliferated through the brand’s line-up, its sales have waned and its global footprint has shrunk.
The Prius was axed in China in 2016, while sales in markets like the US and Europe have declined during the fourth-generation’s run.
The first Prius was introduced here in October 2001, laying the foundation for Toyota’s current leadership in the petrol-electric market that saw a record 65,491 hybrid cars sold in 2021 – almost a third of its total, and close to half of all its SUVs and passenger cars.
Over the journey Toyota Australia has sold over 20,000 examples of the Prius across four generations, not including the Prius C (axed in 2020 to make way for the Yaris hybrid) and the Prius V (axed in 2021).
MORE: Everything Toyota Prius