Will Toyota Make a Performance Version of the C-HR Crossover?
The Toyota C-HR has been causing us to salivate for more than a year and a half now. It made its first appearance at the Paris Motor Show in October 2014, where critics responded positively to its quirky, un-Toyota-like styling. Following its debut, Toyota was quick to inform the public that the C-HR would become a production model in the not-too-distant future. Following a short stint as a Scion, the production C-HR finally showed its face at this year’s Geneva Motor Show, and we were thrilled to see that the crossover retained much of what made us fall in love with it in the first place.
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Despite the C-HR not being slated for release until next spring as a 2018 model, rumors are already circulating about the possibility of a performance variant of the unique crossover. In fact, C-HR lead engineer Hiro Koba told the UK’s Autocar magazine that he was “pushing to make such a car,” and that he needs “to get approval.”
In fact, Toyota has created a Racing C-HR to compete in next month’s 24 Hours of Nurburgring, so the idea is already planted in the automaker’s mind. Rembert Serrus, Toyota Motor Europe’s senior manager, 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.”
If produced, the C-HR sports version would compete with the likes of the Nissan JUKE NISMO. The JUKE’s unique frog-like design already makes it a likely competitor for the C-HR, and its performance NISMO model is begging for some competition in the US’s current lackluster performance crossover market.
Hopefully Hiro Koba has enough sway with the higher-ups at Toyota to get his way. The quirky C-HR is begging to be turned into a performance car, and with the addition of the 86 to Toyota’s lineup, it could be a great time for the automaker to recapture some of its fans who turned to other makes once Toyota axed the likes of the Supra and the Celica GT.
News Source: Autocar