Owning a sports car can be a lot of fun if you live near a race track or if you have the time and means to travel long distances for some fast laps. Things can get even better if this is done on a regular basis, as the next day can provide even more fun by going over the telemetry data.
Track addicts are always looking to improve their runs, so it’s safe to assume that they always connect their car to a telemetry recording device. Corvette Stingray owners, for instance, will be able to order their sports car with a Performance Data Recorder beginning with the 2015 model year.
Naturally, there are all sorts of similar devices to be had as we speak, with most of them being suitable for just any vehicle. However, Toyota will be launching one of their own — it’s called Sports Drive Logger and was created for the affordable GT 86 sports car.
How does it work? Well, Toyota says the device, which was co-developed with Sony, is programmed to collect data passing through the GT 86’s controller area network, which means it will log information such as GPS positioning, accelerator and brake pedal use, gear shifting, engine behavior and vehicle speed.The collected data is optimized so it can be transferred to an USB device for future analysis and use.
Now there’s more good news for those are also into Gran Turismo 6. The data can be loaded into the video game, where it recreates the said track run. Furthermore, it will allow the user to race against their own or against data uploaded by their friends.
The bad news is that the Sports Drive Logger won’t be available in the U.S. for now, with the device to go on sale only in Japan this June (priced at around $833 at current exchange rates). This is probably why the system only offers support for three local tracks - Fuji, Suzuka and Tsubuka. There’s no word on if and when the Sports Drive Logger will be launched Stateside, but we’re keeping our fingers crossed that the tech makes it into the Scion FR-S .
Video about the Sports Drive Logger after the jump.
Introduced for the 2012 model year, the GT 86 is a sports car jointly developed by Toyota and Subaru. Therefore, it is marketed with both Toyota and Subaru badges — while the U.S.-spec car is sold under the Scion FR-S and Subaru BRZ names.
The two-door coupe is powered by a 2.0-liter, four-cylinder boxer engine that generates 200 horsepower and 151 pound-feet of torque. Transmission choices include a six-speed manual and a six-speed automatic.
Built in Japan, the Scion FR-S starts from $25,455, while the Subaru BRZ is priced from $25,495.
Gallery Toyota GT 86
Toyota Motor Corporation will launch the “Sports Drive Logger” onboard telemetry recording device, an exciting new way to enjoy driving by fusing the thrill and adrenaline of track driving with the comfort and fun of home gaming. Designed specifically for the Toyota "86" sports car, the Sports Drive Logger will be released throughout Japan on June 2*1 with a manufacturer’s suggested retail price of 91,800 yen*2.
The logger collects data passing through the vehicle’s controller area network (CAN) and also positional data from its dedicated GPS, and formats the data for easy copying to USB memory. CAN data can include GPS data, accelerator pedal strokes, steering angles, brake operation signals, shift operation signals, engine speed and vehicle speed.
The first application compatible with the data is Sony Computer Entertainment Inc.’s racing game Gran Turismo 6*3*4 (GT6), a PlayStation®3*3 (PS3) exclusive. On April 2, a PS3 firmware update (version 1.06) will enable the input of driving data recorded at certain racing circuits into GT6’s GPS Visualizer to let users replay track runs and race against their own or their friends’ data.
Furthermore, by using the GPS Data Visualizer in conjunction with GT6’s GPS Data Logger, users will be able to compare their own driving data against those of professional drivers, enabling study and improvement of driving techniques by practicing in concert with model braking, acceleration techniques and racing lines.
Initially supported racing circuits are the Fuji Speedway International Racing Course, the Tsukuba Circuit 2000 Course, and the Suzuka Circuit International Racing Course, with additional circuits planned for the future.