The World Rally Championship doesn’t get much attention here in the U.S., and even globally its popularity has been on the wane in recent years. But that may change in coming years as more of the major automakers join the fray. Just this year, in fact, Volkswagen entered WRC and won the title in spectacular fashion. Next year Hyundai will make a return to the sport and soon Toyota may do the same.

According to Motorsport News (via Autocar), Toyota is building a new WRC car based on its Yaris subcompact. And responsible for the build is none other than TMG, the German outfit responsible for building various Toyota race cars over the years including Formula One cars as well as the latest Le Mans prototypes.

TMG already builds a Yaris-based rally car which it sells to customer teams competing in the Yaris R1 Challenge rally series, and the company has on its shelf a new Global Race Engine that meets the latest regulations for WRC. In fact, we previously reported that the new engine, shown on TMG’s dyno in the gallery above, was about to start real-world testing in a Yaris chassis.

Toyota competed in various rally competitions between 1973 and 1999 before switching its focus to F1. During that time it achieved four drivers’ and three constructors’ titles as well as 43 victories using its Celica GT-Four and the Corolla WRC rally cars.

Testing of the new Yaris WRC will reportedly commence next year. It is said to be a low-key program, aimed mainly at gaining experience.


Follow Motor Authority on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.