Chris Harris Goes Mad In The Toyota GR Yaris
Toyota wouldn’t be the first brand you think of when talking about exciting cars. However, the Japanese brand has been on something of a roll in recent times and the GR Yaris is one of the best examples. Chris Harris has driven and raced more than a few cars, so he is quite qualified to talk about it while finding out its limits. As you might guess, some epic driving is in store, and here’s what Harris makes of Toyota’s rally-bred hot hatch.
Papadakis Racing’s 1,000-Horsepower Toyota Corolla Hatch Is a Reminder That Drifting Is Completely Amazing
Last week, I was in Savannah, Georgia, driving the new 2020 Toyota Corolla Sedan and while I was there, Toyota had a surprise waiting for me - a ride along with Ryan Tuerck in the 1,000-horsepower Papadakis Racing Toyota Corolla Hatchback drift machine! It was an incredible experience, and it served as a stark reminder of just how amazing drifting really is.
Updated 03/19/2019: When this article was originally written, the author assumed Ryan Tuerck would drive the featured Corolla race car in the 2019 Formula Drift season. This is incorrect. Papadakis Racing built the featured Corolla race car for Toyota for demonstration purposes, and Ryan Tuerck is not a regular driver for the Papadakis Racing team. The author apologizes for the error.
Toyota Wins Dakar For The First Time as Mini and Peugeot Crumble
With Peugeot exiting stage left, it seemed like Mini and Toyota would battle it out for the victory in the 2019 Dakar Rally and, indeed, it was Toyota man, Nasser Al-Attiyah, who delivered the goods, winning in a commanding fashion as his nearest rivals faltered.
The 2019 Dakar Rally, which keeps being a mislabeled event as it’s been taking place in South America for a decade already, proved grueling although the competitors never went further than Peru. It was the first time since the inaugural edition that the Dakar didn’t travel across more than one country, but that didn’t mean it lacked in either excitement or drama.
The Toyota GT86 was launched in 2012, along with its Subaru BRZ and Scion FR-S siblings. Although the GT86 was only sold in Europe, both the BRZ and the FR-S arrived in the United States for the 2013 model year. All three sports cars share the same 2.0-liter, four-cylinder, boxer engine that delivers 200 horsepower and 151 pound-feet of torque. The powerplant mates to either a six-speed manual or a six-speed automatic and enables each of the triplets to sprint from naught to 60 mph in 6.9 to 7.6 seconds, respectively. Far from being one of the fastest sports car on the market, the Toyota GT86 is definitely one of the most affordable, a feat that made it quite popular with consumers.
As we move into the 2015 model year, Toyobaru has yet to introduce the highly anticipated performance update the GT86/BRZ/FR-S dearly needs. However, the GT86 nameplate expanded to receive a brand-new member in the shape of a rally car. Yes folks, Toyota is joining the World Rally Championship with an R3-spec version of its sports car. The race-ready GT86 is not only more powerful, but lighter too, and it just fired up our enthusiasm toward a faster road-going version.
Click past the jump to read more about the Toyota GT86 CS-R3 Rally Car.
The popularity of the Toyota GT 86 has resulted in the sports coupe being transformed in a variety of ways, but in all that time, it’s never been turned into a rally car.
Well, Toyota’s motorsport partner TMG wants to change all of that with the introduction of the Toyota GT 86 CS-R3 — a rear-wheel-drive rally car based on the GT 86. The company is targeting the FIA’s new R3C rally category and it’s prepared to go balls to the wall with the rally-spec setup of the CS-R3.
For starters, TMG says its planning to use the GT 86 CS-V3 an endurance racecar based on the sports coupe, as the baseline for the rally racer. Engine modifications are on tap, as are improved brakes, a new transmission, and what we can only imagine to be an aesthetically pleasing body that will exude that go-get-dirty rally spirit.
The CS-R3 is also being built to compete in the World Rally Championship with its intended class being the lower R3 division. Nevertheless, the car is expected to be finished and ready for customer teams in time for the 2015 season, giving TMG and Toyota enough time to work their magic in giving the GT 86 CS-R3 a new rally twist. No word on pricing yet, but expect an announcement in the next several months.
Click past the jump to read about the 2013 Toyota GT 86 CS-V3
Toyota’s Motorsport division has its eye on a return to rally racing and they’re bringing a new ride for the occasion. This new model should come in just in time for the ninth round of the World Rally Championship at the ADAC Rallye Deutschland on August 24th to 26th, 2012.
The car will be the Toyota Yaris, the company’s lovable little hatchback that has been rechristened as the "Yaris R1A." In order to comply with FIA R1A regulations, Toyota gave the Yaris limited performance modifications that include a new racing exhaust, a catalytic converter system, shorter final drive gear, a new motorsport suspension with adapted springs and adjustable ride height, and cursory safety enhancements like the bolt-in roll cage, rally seats, safety harnesses, a power cut-off switch, fire extinguishers, and sump guards.
Talking about the new Yaris R1A, TMG president Yoshiaki Kinoshita said: "It is a great thrill for TMG to return to rallying, a discipline in which we enjoyed a great deal of success in the past. The TMG Yaris R1A is a completely different project compared to our WRC past; it is an affordable but exciting car which makes rallying‟s major events accessible to a whole range of participants."
For now, the Yaris R1A will participate at the ADAC Rallye Deutscheland as a "Zero Car" with Toyota setting a goal for their new rally baby to become the first car in the world to be awarded FIA R1A homologation, allowing it to compete in regional, national, and international competitions, including the WRC.
For a car that has been priced at €22,500 ($27,800), the Yaris R1A is already getting plenty of interest in the rally world. "We have already received numerous inquiries about this car so we know there is a huge appetite in the rally world for a new TOYOTA," said Kinoshita.
"I hope this is the start of a new rally dynasty at TMG."
UPDATE 11/25/12: The Toyota Yaris R1A Rally Car will be on hand at the 2012 Essen Motor Show in a week’s time. Watch out for it as it tries to gt some attention from the expected throngs go people headed to Europe’s biggest aftermarket auto show.
The Toyota PPI Trophy Trucks are often referred to as one of the most significant trucks in off-road history, and rightfully so. The partnership between Toyota and Precision Preparation Inc. (PPI) resulted in 27 wins and seven championships in the now-defunct Mickey Thompson Off-Road Stadium Series, and who can forget the fact that the best of the best in off-roading, Ivan “Ironman” Stewart, was a part of this team.
The example we have today, the 1994 Toyota PPI Trophy Truck 015, was the final truck built under the Toyota/PPI partnership. To make this truck even more desirable, Ivan Stewart himself piloted it at the Baja 2000.
This fine truck has just come off of a restoration and RK Motors Charlotte is giving you the opportunity to own this piece of off-road history. We are certain this freshly revamped off-roading legend is going to require a premium price.
To find out more about this truck and its asking price, click past the jump.
Just a few short years ago, the World Rally Championship (WRC) was in crisis after both Mitsubishi and Subaru left the sport in quick succession. However, since then, newcomers Mini and Volkswagen have confirmed they’ll compete in the WRC in the next few years and if reports are to be believed, yet another historic racing manufacturer may make a return.
Toyota originally competed in the WRC from 1973 to 1999 and wrapped up three WRC titles and came home with 43 victories. A good enough record to warrant staying in the sport, you say? Well, it is a fairly illustrious record, but Toyota left WRC to instead focus on Formula One and we all know how that turned out. Not very well.
The Toyota Celica WRC rally car was one of the most recognizable cars Toyota entered into the sport, but despite the GT 86 and Scion FR-S recently being launched by the brand, Toyota has confirmed that neither will enter the WRC.
While discussing the topic, a Toyota spokesman said, “We’re leaning towards an S2000-style of car which would be available for customers first. This is a development project, but it’s very early days—the engine only fired up for the first time a few weeks ago. At the very earliest, a car won’t be available until next year. Obviously, this being a Global Race Engine, it could go in any car, but the Yaris seems to make sense.”
The Yaris may not seem like the obvious choice, but look at it this way; it’s a lightweight city car with an extremely short wheelbase, the ideal combination for rallying. And with the original Mini Cooper having such a successful WRC career with those same ingredients, Toyota could be on to a winner here.
At this stage, it’s very unlikely that we will see the Yaris competing in the WRC until 2014 or beyond, but either way, we’re still excited to see how having five manufacturers will spice up the sport.
The Toyota GT 86, the Scion FR-S, and the Subaru BRZ may all be intertwined, but ever since they were all introduced late last year, each of the Japanese sports coupes have branched out into different fields of motor racing.
The BRZ, for one, has joined the ranks of the Japan’s Super GT300 series, while the Scion FR-S will soon be making its debut in the 2012 Formula Drift season. As for the Toyota GT 86, it appears to be heading over to Germany to compete in one of the world’s toughest endurance races, the 24 Hours of Nurburgring.
Toyota, together with its racing amigos over at Gazoo Racing, recently announced that they were bringing a specially modified GT 86 coupe to the 24 Hours of Nurburgring. Full details behind the race-spec GT 86 have yet to be announced, but the Japanese automaker did divulge the list of drivers that will be driving the car in the day-long endurance race, including Masahiko Kageyama, Hisami Sato, Yoshinobu Katsumata, Hiroaki Ishiura, Kazuya Oshima, Takuto Iguchi, and Minoru Takaki.
In addition to the 24 Hours of Nurburgring, the GT 86 will also be entered in a number of other series races in Japan, particularly the Super Taikyu Endurance Series and the All-Japan Rally Championship.
Looks like the three sister sports cars are all set to begin their racing careers. Only time will tell which of these three will be most successful.
Looks like Porsche won’t be the only automaker bringing in some historical racers to the Goodwood Festival of Speed next week. Turns out, Toyota is joining in on the fun too.
To celebrate the Japanese automaker’s successful forays into the world of the WRC in the 80’s and 90’s, Toyota is bringing at least three of their rally-winning race cars, including the Group B Celica Twin Cam TA64, the very same car that scooped up a number of rally wins back in its heyday and was even nicknamed the "King of Africa" for its dominating performance at the Safari and Ivory Coast rallies. Joining the the Group B Celica is another one of its brethren, the Group A Celica ST185, the three-time championship car that staked titles for Toyota from 1992-1994, and Toyota’s more recent rally machine, the Corolla WRC, which scooped up 25 podium finishes from 1997 to 1999.
These cars, of course, only constitute a small chunk of machines Toyota’s gearing up to bring to Goodwood. In addition to the rally racers, the brand is also showing off a couple of its more recent releases, including a Dakar-participating Land Cruiser, a special edition supercharged iQ, a 900bhp Supra GT, and last, but certainly and most definitely not least, the brand’s new ultimate pride and joy, the Lexus LF-A.
Press Release after the jump
Just last week, classic racers were screaming up the hill outside Lord March’s estate at the Goodwood Festival of Speed. Have a look back at a previous year’s festival when the Pikes Peak champion Rod Millen brought his record setting Toyota Tacoma race truck to England.