The Toyota Yaris Hybrid-R Concept has been teased already, offering up little glimpses and details of the Frankfurt-bound vehicle. And while those few, shadowy shots have been great, we’ve really wanted to know how this hatchback would deliver its promised 400-plus horsepower. Under hood sits a 1.6-liter, race-derived, direct-injection, turbocharged four-cylinder that powers the front wheels. Sounds peachy, but with 414 horsepower splashed across the page, we’re going to need something more than a 1.6-liter, turbo four.
A supercapacitor, developed from the Toyota TS030 Hybrid Le Mans racer sits in place of a hybrid’s traditional battery packs. The benefit, according to Toyota, is that power can be more rapidly absorbed and discharged than in a traditional battery system, like nickel metal-hydride.
The gas engine is joined by a trio of 60-horsepower electric motors. Two of the them power the rear wheels, while the third sits between the engine and the six-speed, sequential gearbox. Developing the same amount of power as the rear-axle motors, this centrally located motor channels power to the race-derived supercapacitor during braking, and ships extra grunt to the rear wheels under acceleration when the front wheels start to lose grip. Besides the distributive power of the central motor, the rear electric motors can adjust the amount of torque flowing to each wheel, much like a differential.
Take a look below for the full press release from Toyota, and then be sure to check back when the Yaris Hybrid-R Concept makes its official debut at the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show.
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Official: Toyota drops detail about 414-hp Hybrid-R concept powertrain