Toyota Will Build Future Hybrid Hypercar Linked to Le Mans Racer
The Toyota GR Super Sport Concept was previewed at the 2018 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Toyota and its high-performance counterpart Toyota Gazoo Racing, pulled the covers off their Toyota GR Super Sport Concept at the 86th edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, which is believed to be the base for their upcoming hybrid hypercar due sometime by 2021.
The GR Super Sport Concept was first displayed at the 2018 Tokyo Auto Salon in January, but this time Toyota has confirmed that the new "super sports car" is on its way, and that it will feature hybrid technology. It's easy to believe that this upcoming vehicle will incorporate hybrid electric technology honed through Toyota's participation in the FIA World Endurance Championship.
"Development of Toyota's next generation of super sports car has started," the company said in a press release. "It takes the cutting-edge hybrid electric systems and fuel economy technology that the TGR WEC team has tested and refined during the past six years in WEC, and showcases them in one superb package."
Toyota claims that the sleek-looking concept is powered by a twin-turbocharged V-6 engine which is then electrified via the Toyota Hybrid System-Racing. The result of such combination is expected to deliver a combined output of 1,000 horsepower, just like the TS050 Hybrid LMP1 race car. However, these are the specifications for the prototype and not the upcoming road car, so it's likely that these will vary. By how much? Only time will tell.
"Competing in the World Endurance Championship, one of the most demanding motorsports series, and racing at Le Mans, one of the most iconic races, helps us to advance the development of our world-leading hybrid electric technology and enables us to transfer the knowledge we gain into our production cars," said Shigeki Tomoyama, President of GAZOO Racing Company.
"As the automotive industry is approaching an era of big changes, we will continue our passion for making cars that are truly exciting. No matter how electronics and digital technology will continue to transform vehicles, we will make sure that our cars will not become just another commodity."
Speaking of building exciting vehicles, the development of this upcoming Toyota bodes rather well with the announcement of an FIA-approved "hypercar class" for the 2021 24 Hours of Le Mans, which so far point to race-prepped, all-wheel-drive, hybrid, production-based vehicles.
"We started this project because we believe that creating a super sports car that delivers the same appeal as the TS050 Hybrid greatly adds to Toyota's involvement in WEC," added Tomoyama. "And at some point in the near future, customers will have a chance to get behind the wheel of this incredible machine and experience its astonishing power and driving performance"
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