Toyota’s Gazoo Racing division, which handles go-fast road cars and race cars alike, is on a roll these days, with the Supra and the GR86 having been joined by the GR Yaris and, as of last month, the GR Corolla everybody seems to be talking about these days. Naturally, some enthusiasts still want more, which is where this virtual GR Sienna steps onto the scene.
Admittedly, there is an empty space in the dynamic side of the Toyota lineup. That would be the GR Super Sport, a street-legal effort based on the Japanese automaker’s GR010 Hybrid Le Mans Hypercar racer. Back in 2020, Toyota released a prototype for the number plate-wearing hypercar. In addition, the carmaker continued to promise a road car past the moment when the Le Mans Hypercar rules changed (a homologation special is no longer required). Alas, with the company having presented an aggressive EV strategy back in December, the hybrid hypercar has been put on the back burner.
Of course, the Sienna minivan, which can seat up to 8 occupants, would be at the other end of the performance spectrum. Still, such a model would naturally allow soccer parents to enjoy themselves and entertain their kids while they’re at it.
The current fourth-generation Sienna, which entered service in 2020, is only offered in hybrid form. However, the mix between its 2.5L N/A gas engine and a pair of electric motors, offers a respectable 243 hp (246 PS), with the internal combustion engine accounting for 186 hp (189 PS) and the electric assistance power the rear axle for an e-AWD setup.
More power, of course
A GR Sienna like the one portrayed here would have to offer at least 300 hp to make sense. And this could be achieved in multiple ways, from borrowing the punching-above-its-weight 1.6L turbo of the GR Yaris and GR Corolla to using a more potent hybrid setup from TNGA-K (GA-K) platform mates such as the Toyota RAV4. Alas, given the transverse engine configuration of the architecture, fitting the GR Supra’s BMW-sourced 3.0L straight-six sounds like a job for SEMA rather than an OEM effort.
Last year, the Toyota Sienna climbed to the top of the U.S. minivan segment, albeit only outgunning the Chrysler Pacifica over the latter’s production issues. Even so, Americans took home a total of 107,990 of these Toyota people movers in 2021.
Is that enough for the company to build a GR iteration? Probably not, but this only leaves more room for third-party builders.
Sounds more like a SEMA project
After all, Abimelec Arellano (aka abimelecdesign), who rendered the GR Sienna for Hagerty—the insurance specialist built an amusing tale around these images—had previously rendered a Hellcat Pacifica. And, as you can see in the second Instagram post below, the project, which is being built by Youtuber Tavarish at the Classic Car Club Manhattan and eBay Motors, is on track for a 2022 SEMA debut in early November.
And since the previous generation of the Sienna could be had with a 296 hp (300 PS) V6 from the factory, we’d imagine a home-brewed GR Sienna could overcome the said Mk V Supra engine layout hurdle or even bring along a good old 2JZ swap like this Formula Drift GR86.
Of course, a Japanese tuner could always pull such a stunt for the Tokyo Auto Show, with this Lexus-dressed Toyota minivan serving as an example of how people movers are treated in the Land of the Rising Sun.