Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda Brings One-Off Century GRMN To The Track

One of the perks of being the CEO of a major carmaker is that you can instruct your engineers to build whatever you want.

This, of course, includes exciting cars. How many chief executives do that, however? Not as many as we would want, and that makes Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda really stand out in the crowd. Another great thing about the man is he won’t stop at asking his subordinates to make not just good, but great cars, he will also test drive them — even Toyota’s race cars. He has even raced not once, but thrice in the Nurburgring 24 Hours, finishing second in his class with an LFA in 2013.

Last year, Toyoda was spotted in a one-off Century GRMN, which later turned out to be his company car. As nice and comfy as the rear seats may be, we expected to see Toyoda San behind the wheel rather than sitting in the back. After all, his Century features modifications from Gazoo Racing. Well, we’ve come across a video that shows Mr. Toyoda taking the Century GRMN to the Fuji Speedway.

Also watch: Toyota Announces WRC Return in 2017 with the Yaris, Akio Toyoda Test Drives it [w/Video]

The video was taken on November 25 last year at the Toyota Gazoo Racing Festival 2018. While he still doesn’t drive the car, he shows it to the spectators as the big limo joins other Gazoo Racing cars including the new Supra, a GT86 race car, the TS050 endurance racer, the Prius GT300 from Japan’s Super GT series, and more.

Watching the 5,335mm (210in) long limousine driving on the track is a pretty cool image, although Toyoda’s jumpsuit-wearing chauffeur drove it in a civilized manner. We still don’t know what mechanical changes Gazoo Racing made to the Century GRMN, but even the standard Century luxury sedan has an impressive spec sheet.

It’s powered by a 5.0-liter naturally aspirated V8 that makes 381 PS (376 hp) at 6,200 rpm and 510 Nm (376 lb-ft) of torque at 4,000 rpm. The gasoline unit is backed by an electric motor that produces 221 hp (224 PS) and 221 lb-ft (300 Nm) of torque, giving the Century a combined output of 431 PS (425 hp).

  • RDS Alphard

    They have two unit now, another one “black” on Tokyo Auto Salon 2019.

  • Craig

    This is what the LS should look like. [Or something close to it] Not that scary looking think they’re selling in NA now.

  • Leconte Dave

    thrice??

  • Christian Wimmer

    I’ve always admired the Century but I feel that the latest model is a step backwards in terms of design. The preceding models looked sleeker, more elegant and more stately. The new one just looks chubby.

  • SteersUright

    Um, who does the math around here?
    “It’s powered by a 5.0-liter naturally aspirated V8 that makes 381 PS (376 hp) at 6,200 rpm and 510 Nm (376 lb-ft) of torque at 4,000 rpm. The gasoline unit is backed by an electric motor that produces 221 hp (224 PS) and 221 lb-ft (300 Nm) of torque, giving the Century a combined output of 431 PS (425 hp).”
    Simple math suggests 597hp, not 425hp, when adding the two outputs.

    • john1168

      I believe the motor is there to add to the gaps of the engine and add a little to it during the peak power of the engine. The electric motor probably delivers its max power when the engine is below 4000 rpm and then backs off above that. That’s how the software is probably coded in the ecu. If you add the max power outputs of the engine and motor separately, you will get the number you say but if you measure the output as they work together then you’ll get the lower number.

      I used to think the same thing as you but this is how it was explained to me and to me, it makes sense, so I hope I explained it correctly.

    • DMJ

      Doesn’t add up in any hybrid. BMW 530e, for instance: 184 + 112, total combined 248hp. Others have explained the reasons.

  • Blade t

    Almost looks like an older Cadillac. .

  • sidewaysspin

    That looks cool, Toyota is finally learning.

  • Merc1

    I really like this car. Toyota should bring over 500 units for the U.S. market. Not sure if it should remain a Toyota or a be branded as a Lexus. Either way it’s a really cool, unique car with real Japanese heritage.

    M

  • StrangerGP

    One of few Toyota cars I’d love to have, we need more traditional looking, classy limousines.

  • Bob White

    Is this guy really small or is this car absolutely huge? Or is it the way it was filmed?

  • Rot

    Like

  • Eythan Aldrich

    *entrance

  • It’s pointless and yet I love it so much.

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