Daigo Saito has a problem, and that is his addiction with fitting the 2JZ engine into anything he can. The D1 Grand Prix and Formula Drift champion previously transplanted the legendary turbocharged inline-six engine into a Toyota GR Supra, somewhat vindicating the vocal purists that have lamented the Supra’s BMW roots. This time, the drifter turned his attention to the Supra’s younger brother, the GR Yaris.
As one can probably imagine, fitting an engine with double the cylinder count is not a straightforward swap. Saito’s team had to cut the firewall well into the passenger cell in order to fit the engine longitudinally in order to send power to the rear wheels.
But was all the work worth it? Hell yes. Saito said that the 2JZ engine in the little hatchback has been tuned to make 1,000 hp – that is more than triple the stock output figure of the GR Yaris, which already made an impressive 272 hp and 370 Nm from its 1.6-litre turbocharged three-pot mill.
While no further technical figures have been provided, we can’t imagine that the stripped-out drift machine weighs anything more than the stock GR Yaris, which comes in just under 1,300 kg. That’s almost like fitting a rocket into a Myvi – we imagine it’d probably be easier to drift this than driving it in a straight line.
To make way for the extra steering lock, the exterior has also been chopped up and fitted with a Rocket Bunny Pandem widebody kit. Same goes to the rear boot lid, which has two giant holes cut out to let more air pass through the giant intercoolers. There’s also a giant wing on the back of the hatchback, supported by two struts to withstand the extra forces.
We just hope that the 2JZ-swapped Toyota GR Yaris doesn’t suffer the same fate as the similarly-powered Supra. But even if it does blow up, we know that Daigo Saito will come back with another equally mind-blowing project soon.