Toyota’s promise of showcasing its Le Mans hybrid technology on a road car will come to fruition at the 2013 Frankfurt Auto Show, as it prepares to unveil the Toyota Yaris Hybrid-R Concept.

This new concept may seem unimposing when you read that it is based on a Yaris — blah — but save your judgement for something else because this is one sick miniature hatchback. With a TS030-inspired drivetrain in tow that cranks out in excess of 400 ponies, this is not your typical grocery getter.

This bad boy will likely give plenty of supercars a run for their money while hauling a few gallons of milk, a loaf of bread and laundry detergent all at the same time. All of the details are not available yet, but Toyota has released all that we need to know to be able to chalk this one up and a certified bad-ass.

Toyota will unveil the concept on September 10th at 12:45 p.m. in Hall 8.

Updated 9/4/2013: Toyota has just released more images of the Yaris Hybrid-R. You can see them all in the gallery.

Click past the jump to read about the Toyota Yaris Hybrid-R

  • 2013 Toyota Yaris Hybrid-R Concept
  • Year:
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Engine:
  • Horsepower @ RPM:
  • Torque @ RPM:
    650 (Est.)
  • Displacement:
    1.6 L
  • 0-60 time:
    4.7 sec. (Est.)
  • Top Speed:
    160 mph (Est.)
  • car segment:
  • car fuel:
  • body style:


2013 Toyota Yaris Hybrid-R Concept High Resolution Exterior
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2013 Toyota Yaris Hybrid-R Concept High Resolution Exterior
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2013 Toyota Yaris Hybrid-R Concept High Resolution Exterior
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The exterior of the Yaris Hybrid-R Concept is still in its rendering stage, but the design is realistic and looks auto-show ready. It features blue highlights on the side skirts, front splitter and the lower-grille surround to contrast its base coat, which looks to be either white or silver. On each side of the modified front apron, the Hybrid-R boasts a huge air intake to help keep things all cool under the hood and/or in the front braking system.

Around back, the blue accent continues up and around a few massive air outlets on the bumper. The only other part of the rear end that looks the part of the concept are the clear taillights. The rest is all pretty much from a stick Yaris.

The stock look of this concept may trick you into thinking that this the Yaris Hybrid-R may be a reality at some point, but we suggest curtailing your enthusiasm a bit. We’ll know more about its production possibilities following the Frankfurt show.


There is no information on the interior yet, but we can guess that this white and blue theme will carry on into the cabin, with the main color being white with splashes of blue to spice it up a bit. We also expect to see plenty of technology inside the cabin, like hybrid monitors and all of high-tech gadgets to help monitor and control the various systems on this hot concept.

Drivetrain, Suspension and Brakes

2013 Toyota Yaris Hybrid-R Concept Drivetrain
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Under the hood is where this Yaris earns its stripes, as it features a 1.6-liter turbocharged, direct-injected four-cylinder engine and a pair of electric motors. The 1.6-liter four-pot is responsible for driving the front wheels, while the two 60-horsepower electric motors — the same motor found in the Yaris hybrid — each drive one rear wheel. This all-wheel-drive setup delivers a maximum of 414 horsepower to all four wheels.

The two electric motors actually serve a dual purpose, as they help the Yaris accelerate at breakneck speeds and also serve as generators to recoup energy during braking. What’s more, is that this energy that the motors recoup during braking gets saved up in a supercapacitor and delivers extra power, when needed. For example, if the Yaris is in "Road" mode, the electric motors’ are reduced to 40 horsepower total and the supercapacitor can deliver this power for 10 seconds per charge. In the "Track" mode, the motors run at a combined 119 horsepower for 5 seconds per charge for extreme acceleration bursts.

2013 Toyota Yaris Hybrid-R Concept Drivetrain
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These separate motors allow the Yaris Hybrid-R to perform delicate torque vectoring for optimal performance. Each motor can deliver more or less torque, as needed, to help steer the hot hatch through a tight corner. Additionally, the slower wheel can also act as a generator, which can charge the supercapacitor and allow you to rocket out of the corner in perfect situations.

One final electric motor sits in between the gasoline engine and the six-speed sequential gearbox, and this motor has two functions. It’s primary function is to act as a generator to the supercapacitor and the rear motors, keeping them all full of juice. It’s secondary task is to act as a traction control system that directs torque to the rear motors to enhance traction and allow the Yaris to handle or launch more effectively. Unlike traditional traction-control systems that limit engine power, this system supplements the engine power to maximize grip, leading to intense acceleration.


2015 BMW i3

2015 BMW i3 High Resolution Exterior
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The BMW i3 is by no means a real threat to the performance numbers of the Yaris Hybrid-R, nor is the Hybrid-R a threat to ever make it to production. But, they are similar in that they both use small displacement and electric power to create impressive output. The i3 delivers 170 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque from its three-cylinder engine and sprints to 60 mph in 7 seconds, which is not too shabby for its class.


2013 Toyota Yaris Hybrid-R Concept High Resolution Exterior
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So far, the Yaris Hybrid-R looks like a bad-ass, but the chances of this technology actually making it to the compact hatchback are slim. We wouldn’t be at all surprised to see this drivetrain make its way into the future Supra.

Kirby Garlitos
Kirby Garlitos
Automotive Aftermarket Expert -
Kirby’s first exposure into the world of automobiles happened when he caught Knight Rider on television as a five-year old boy. David Hasselhoff didn’t leave much of an impression on him (that happened later on in Baywatch), but KITT certainly did. To this day, Kirby remains convinced that he will one day own a car with the same ‘spirit’ as the original KITT (not the 2008 monstrosity). He doesn't know when that will be, but until then, he’s committed to expressing his love for KITT, and all cars for that matter, here at TopSpeed.  Read full bio
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Press Release1

At the forthcoming 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show, Toyota will present an exciting new concept that brings Toyota Hybrid System-Racing technology to the road (and track).

2013 Toyota Yaris Hybrid-R Concept Emblems and Logo
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Press Release 2

Hybrid-R is based on a current Toyota production model and is equipped with a powertrain that features similar technology to that used by Toyota Racing’s TS030 Hybrid race car in the FIA World Endurance Championship.

It combines a high-power internal combustion engine with electric motors to achieve a maximum power output of more than 400bhp (298kW). A dual mode control allows the car’s performance to be tailored to suit either road or racetrack.

Toyota will host a press conference on its stand in Hall 8 at 12.45pm on 10 September.

Press Release 2

Exclusively hybrid: Toyota marks 16 years of technology leadership at Frankfurt Motor Show

Toyota devotes its Frankfurt motor show presentation to hybrid technology

World premiere of the Yaris Hybrid-R concept
Latest development of Toyota hydrogen fuel cell technology
16 years and more than 5.5 million worldwide sales of Toyota hybrids
Toyota will bring together its past achievements and future plans for hybrid power in a Frankfurt motor show presentation devoted entirely to its industry-leading technology. Since it introduced the original Prius saloon in Japan in 1997, Toyota has sold more than 5.5 million hybrid vehicles world wide and continues to extend its portfolio, currently offering 23 models worldwide.

Yaris Hybrid-R concept

Frankfurt will mark the world debut of the new Yaris Hybrid-R concept, created as a showcase for possible future hybrid development ideas that can deliver greater performance and driver rewards.

Based on the three-door Yaris, Hybrid-R features a 1.6-litre GRE (Global Race Engine) developed by Toyota Motorsport, combined with two powerful electric motors that give the car intelligent all-wheel drive capability. Using technology like that featured in Toyota’s TS030 Hybrid race car, energy recovered under braking is stored in a super capacitor, a unit that’s particularly suitable for use in a sports car thanks to its high power density and quick charge and discharge speeds.

The result is a highly focused machine, designed to deliver the maximum driving pleasure, both on road and track.

Fuel cell technology: next steps towards the ultimate zero-emission car

Toyota will show the latest status of its Fuel Cell Hybrid Vehicle (FCHV) technology at Frankfurt, ahead of the market launch of a production car by 2015. Toyota considers the energy and emissions benefits make this the best technology yet to deliver the ultimate zero-emission car, with hydrogen as an ideal, ultra-clean energy source.

16 years of Toyota hybrid technology

Toyota has been researching and developing environmentally efficient transport solutions for more than 40 years, building world leadership in the design and production of full hybrid powertrain technology.

It made the science a marketplace reality in 1997, when the first Prius went on sale in Japan. Since then, Toyota Motor Corporation has amassed sales of more than 5.5 million hybrids and today has a portfolio 23 different models - four times more than any other competitor - available in 80 countries and regions around the world.

Toyota calculates that its global hybrid fleet has already saved 12 billion litres of fuel and 34 million tonnes of CO2emissions, compared to the same number of equivalent, conventionally powered vehicles.

The story does not end here: by the end of 2015 Toyota will have introduced a further 16 new or revised hybrid models.

Toyota will host a press conference on its stand in Hall 8 at the Frankfurt motor show, at 12.45pm on Tuesday, 10 September.

Press Release 3

Toyota Yaris Hybrid-R: The technical story

More details on the new Toyota concept that will make its debut at the Frankfurt motor show

In designing Yaris Hybrid-R, Toyota has created a supermini concept like no other. Based on a reworked three-door production model, Yaris Hybrid-R harnesses Toyota’s race-winning sports hybrid technology in a powertrain that develops more than 400bhp.

The concept will appear for the first time at the Frankfurt motor show next month, but ahead of the unveiling, Toyota has released more details about its special engineering qualities.

In simple terms, the powertrain features a 1.6-litre petrol Global Race Engine and two powerful electric motors that give the car intelligent electric all-wheel drive. It also makes use of a supercapacitor to harvest and store energy, just like Toyota’s TS030 Hybrid Le Mans car.

The engine is a turbocharged four-cylinder unit with direct injection, developed by Toyota Motorsport (TMG) according to international sporting regulations. This means it can potentially be used in a number of different racing categories. While the engine drives the front wheels, each rear wheel is powered by a 60bhp electric motor - the same as that used in the standard Yaris Hybrid.

In combination, the elements in the hybrid powertrain produce maximum power of up to 414bhp (309kW). The two electric motors work as electric generators when the car is braking, and supplement the petrol engine’s performance under acceleration.


Just as in the Toyota Racing TS030 Hybrid race car, energy recovered under braking is stored in a supercapacitor. Compared to the standard nickel metal-hydride battery used in Yaris Hybrid, the supercapacitor has a higher power density and a fast power charge/discharge speed. This makes it perfectly suited to the demands of track driving in delivering brief, immediate bursts of power.

The level of power depends on the duration of energy delivery required. So, when Yaris Hybrid-R is running in "road" mode, the supercapacitor releases energy for a maximum 10 seconds per charge, and the total power of the two electric motors is reduced to 40bhp. In "track" mode, the motors reach a combined maximum of 119bhp for up to five seconds per charge, reflecting the more frequent braking and acceleration in circuit driving.

Advanced traction control

A third 60bhp motor is located between the engine and six-speed sequential transmissions. This operates as a generator, both during deceleration to feed power to the supercapacitor, and during acceleration to power the rear electric motors.

The latter only happens when engine power and torque exceed the front wheels’ grip limit. The generator works like an advanced traction control system, redirecting torque as electric energy to the rear wheels, to boost acceleration and improve handling rather than simply to limit engine power.

Torque vectoring

The rear electric motors can have a big influence on Yaris Hybrid-R’s handling when cornering, by altering the torque distribution between the left and right rear wheels.

Each motor can be used independently as a generator or a motor to achieve the same effect as an intelligent torque vectoring differential.

Depending on the radius of the curve, the system can send more torque to the outside rear wheel, allowing higher entry speed into middle-speed bends; apply more braking force to the inside wheel in fast curves; or even brake and accelerate each wheel independently in slow bends to adjust the yaw effect for a better line, and to limit steering angle and understeer.

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