Toyota unveiled a GT3 concept car at the Tokyo Motor Show. Is that a first sign that the parent brand now wants to venture into GT3 customer racing itself? The GT3 scene has experienced an impressive boom worldwide in recent years. Despite the corona pandemic, the various series were very popular, which was easy to see from the large number of participants. In order to participate in the boom, almost every major manufacturer has a suitable sports car model on offer. However, Toyota had previously refrained from using its own name in the GT3. Only the Lexus subsidiary was recently active on the customer racing stage with the RC F GT3. But that might change soon. At the Toyko Motor Show, Toyota presented the study of its own GT3 model called “Toyota GR GT3 Concept”. Toyota Toyota ventures onto the GT3 stage – but only once with a concept car.
First GT3, then production model
However, the racer presented is not based on any existing series athletes, as is usually the case with GT3 vehicles. Instead, the designers modeled an independent racing car with a long hood, wide wheels and an aggressively designed front end. “As with the GR Yaris, Toyota does not just want to adapt production vehicles for use in motorsport. Instead, the company uses the feedback and technologies from the various motorsport activities to build ever better cars with real motorsport genes: for the racetrack and for the road,” the manufacturer said. So instead of deriving a racing car from a production model, you want to build the racing car first and then see how to turn it into a sports car for use on public roads – as required by the GT3 regulations. Toyota The long bonnet is particularly striking. As far as the possible drive is concerned, Toyota has not yet made any statements.
No timetable for launch
However, the all-black show car is currently not even ready to drive. Koji Sato, the president of the motorsport department Toyota Gazoo Racing, hinted at the fair that a version that would do its first laps on the race track would be built by the end of the year at the latest. However, there is no exact timetable for the development. It is therefore also unclear whether the Toyota GT3 racer will be ready for customer teams in time for the restart of the Endurance World Championship in 2024. The WEC then wants to switch its sports car class from the old and expensive GTE race cars to the popular global GT3 platform.
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