When you think of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, do you think of the Toyota Prius? Small, economical, hybrid hatchbacks aren't typically Le Mans material. However, to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the fabled race and Toyota's recent success in it, the Japanese automaker unveiled the all-new Toyota Prius 24h Le Mans Centennial GT Edition.
The Toyota Prius 24h Le Mans Centennial GR Edition (Toyota needs to come up with a shorter name for that) is the angriest-looking Prius I've ever seen. It's based on the new fifth-generation model and it keeps the same powertrain as the road car. However, its body, aero, wheels, and even suspension were all upgraded with track-ready components, giving us a taste of what a proper GR Prius would look like.
According to Toyota, the aggressive looks of this Le Mans-style Prius concept are inspired by the Toyota GR010 HYBRID World Endurance Championship racer. So it gets a front lip spoiler, a carbon fiber hood, canards, side skirts, and a big rear wing. In the new front bumper, there are a pair of built-in fog lights for additional nighttime visibility, each of which is made up of four individual square LEDs. In addition to the aero, the Prius GR Edition has a wider wheel track, lowered suspension, and lightweight Rays wheels.
The Prius GR Edition was unveiled at the "Japan.Endless.Discovery" exhibit ahead of this weekend's 24 Hours of Le Mans. The exhibit is being held by the Japan National Tourism Organization (JNTO), Toyota Gazoo Racing (TGR), and Mazda. While there's no official word on whether Toyota will put a GR Prius into production, Toyota did say that more GR models were coming. While I never thought a higher-performance Prius was something the world needed, this special edition concept has me convinced.
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