Toyota makes it official: Auto giant is leaving Formula One
Going into the Formula One offseason, we already knew that BMW would be back for the 2010 season. What we didn’t know was that another team had plans of leaving the sport as well.
Today, Toyota confirmed earlier reports of its F1 exit after it officially announced that it would pull out of the sport effective immediately. The announcement was made by Toyota Motor Corporation Akio Toyoda at a media conference in Tokyo.
According to Toyoda, the single biggest reason of Toyota’s withdrawal stemmed from the unstable economic conditions surrounding the sport – and to a greater extent – the entire auto industry.
“When considering TMC’s motor-sports activities next year and beyond from a comprehensive mid-term viewpoint reflecting the current severe economic realities, TMC decided to withdraw from F1,” Toyoda said.
It seems that car manufacturers are dropping left and right from Formula One, which then begs the question if this will be the last time we’re going to hear something like this, or if this will be a growing trend in the near future.
Photo courtesy of Toyota F1.