A performance variant of the upcoming Toyota C-HR small crossover is under consideration, according to a report from Autocar. The hot version of Toyota’s polarizing mini crossover will go head o head with the Nissan Juke Nismo, should it go into production.
Speaking with Autocar, Toyota C-HR lead engineer Hiro Koba said that a performance variant of the mini crossover wasn’t “concretely” in the plans but he is pushing to make the car a reality. Toyota senior manager Rembert Serrus also added that “the car lends itself to it. It would be possible, but it depends on how much we have to change. A sports version could be a minor change or it could be a new project. A sports version would make a lot of sense.”
Toyota will be entering a racing version of the C-HR at the Nürburgring 24 Hours endurance race next month to gauge public reaction to the car to see if there’s a business case for a performance variant. The race-spec C-HR will use a 1.5-liter turbo-four with around 176 hp. Koba hinted that a similar engine could be used in a performance-oriented C-HR along with improved suspension tuning, brakes, and steering.
The Toyota C-HR will go on sale in Europe in December and it will be available with a choice of 1.2-liter turbo-four or a hybrid powertrain shared with the Toyota Prius. In the U.S., the C-HR will go on sale in spring 2017, supposedly with a 2.0-liter I-4.