Toyota South Africa Motors says it would “very much like” to add a high-performance GR-badged Corolla to its line-up but adds such a model has yet to be confirmed.

Riaan Esterhuysen, manager for product communications at Toyota SA, told media during an online product presentation for the new Corolla Sedan that the Japanese firm’s local arm would welcome a Corolla variant developed by Gazoo Racing.

“Of course, we would very much like a GR version,” Esterhuysen said, in response to a question. “The GR strategy is being applied to the vast majority of Toyota’s model line-up so there are potentially slots for a GR Corolla to be fitted into the line-up.

“We can’t confirm that at this stage nor what the exact details and specifications will be,” he added.

Rumours of a GR Corolla hot hatch have been circulating for some time. Then, in March 2020, Toyota filed an application to trademark the “GR Corolla” badge in Australia.

A month earlier, a report out of the United Kingdom claimed the new GR Corolla would use the same turbocharged 1,6-litre three-cylinder petrol engine as the smaller GR Yaris but added it would hit the market only in 2023.