Toyota Previews 2020 Le Mans “Hypercar” Racer Based On GR Super Sport Road Car

Toyota Gazoo Racing has confirmed today its participation in the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) beyond 2020 when new technical regulations come into play.

Starting with the 2020-2021 season, the top class of the WEC and the 24 Hours of Le Mans will no longer be called LMP1. It will adopt the name “Hypercars” instead and will consist of two types of racers: prototypes in the style of a hypercar and racing versions of road-going hypercars.

Toyota has chosen to take the latter route and will build its car based on the GR Super Sport road car first shown in January 2018. The automaker has already released the first CGI of its hypercar racer which features a very similar silhouette to the GR Super Sport road car concept but a more extreme aerodynamic package.

Also read: Aston Martin Valkyrie To Race At Le Mans In New Hypercar Class

“Toyota Gazoo Racing is delighted to confirm it will participate in the 2020-2021 season with a hybrid-powered prototype based on the GR Super Sport road car. Both road and race car are undergoing design and intensive development at the company’s technical centers in Toyota City, Higashi-Fuji and Cologne,” the automaker said in a press release.

Toyota said it welcomes the future challenge of competing against other sports car manufacturers in the top category of WEC and the Le Mans 24 Hours. Companies that have announced their participation in the “Hypercar” class so far include Aston Martin with a Valkyrie-based racerScuderia Cameron Glickenhaus with the SCG 007, and ByKolles Racing.

Track testing of the new Toyota race car will begin next year prior to the start of the 2020-2021 season. The name of the car will be announced at a later date and further details of the Toyota GR Super Sport road car will be issued “in due course.”

According to the new regulations, a manufacturer that competes in the Hypercar class with a road car-based racer must build a minimum of 20 road models over a two-year period. The new rules also stipulate that the cars must have a maximum weight of 1,100 kg (2,425 lbs) and an average output of 550 kW (750 PS/738 hp). They should also be able to deliver an average lap time of 3 minutes and 30 seconds in race conditions.

Interestingly, hybrid systems are not mandatory but cars that will adopt this solution will be allowed to have a maximum hybrid system output of 200 kW (270 PS/268 hp). To create a level playing field between AWD hybrid cars and 2WD non-hybrid racers, a LMGTE Pro-based Balance of Performance (BoP) system will be applied. In the same spirit, there will be a single tire supplier.


[REGULATIONS 2020] 👉 Here is what you need to know about the 2020 regulations ! Voici tout ce que vous devez savoir…

Gepostet von 24 Heures du Mans am Freitag, 14. Juni 2019

  • Mr. EP9

    I would like to see the Senna and AMG One participate but I doubt it.

    • Matteo Tommasi

      The aero of the Senna is a joke compared to the Valkyrie or the GR prototipe.

      • Ben

        I know its not in the same class, remotely, but the Viper ACR’s nearly 1,800lbs of downforce at 170mph is mind blowing. Even ‘just’ 1200lbs of downforce at 150mph is incredible as well.

        • Jonathan

          The downside to that is Drag, that layout would not work well at Le Mans (look at the aero and rear wing size of the Vipers that raced at Le Mans)

          • Ben

            Of course. There was a Senna article posted here about a month ago I believe and I said as much. The difference between the Senna and other hyper cars and super cars like it is the ability to generate the same crazy amount of downforce, but loose it when its not necessary using efficient active aero.

            But for the price of the Dodge Viper ACR, I don’t think you could have gotten anything better for the same class of vehicle. Subjectively, maybe, but numbers on paper, leaderboards and record books would say the Viper ACR was the best track weapon of its time.

      • Jonathan

        That’s a very inaccurate statement. They’re aiming for completely different targets. The Valhyrie, the GR, and the AMG One are after high speed and low drag as much as they want downforce. The Senna is all about downforce and grip for a typical race track.

        • Matteo Tommasi

          Still, the Senna lacks downforce in comparison to the Valkyrie.

        • Matteo Tommasi

          Still, the Senna has FAR LESS downforce than the others.

  • DMax

    This is shaping up to be pretty exciting. If McLaren, Ferrari and Mercedes will join the series, it’s going to be something to behold. We need something exciting in the top tier motorsports going on, right now LMP1 is basically a battle between privateers and F1 is unwatchable.

    • Ben

      LOL, Ferrari?? Joining something that could make their production vehicles look bad? Remember the threats and hubbub they were making about the LaFerrari when owners wanted to race against Porsche and McLaren. Ferrari wouldn’t allow that unless they had the whole race on tape delay with the ability to pull the plug and keep the footage secret if a Ferrari didn’t win. That would be the only time Ferrari would join.

  • Six Thousand Times

    Really excited to see how this formula shapes up.

  • SteersUright

    Can’t wait to see the street version!!

  • DMax

    To me lackluster engine sound was the first blow to the series. Then watching two Mercedes cars in the front for the last 4 or so years is incredibly boring. Barely any action behind the Mercs as well, passing is not very frequent. F1 came down to who’s got a better car now, not who’s a better driver, though maybe it always was that way.

    • Vassilis

      The noise has improved considerably since 2016, although final results tell otherwise, Merc had serious competition from Ferrari in 2017 and 2018 up to a certain point, racing has also improved and the battles in the midfield are spectacular. This year Ferrari has messed up but it’s still interesting to see whether or not they’ll react. Generally speaking, most races in the last 2 years have been very good.

      Regarding it being a car formula, it has been like that for at least the last 30 years. Thing is though, the driver level is so high, the best from the worst may have a few tenths difference. Gone are the days when truly mediocre drivers were racing.

  • Ben

    It was more than instrumented testing, but anything to do with the car. Anything from a simple drag race, to circuit racing against a competitor. Ferrari is known for being the most restrictive builder in the industry. McLaren and Porsche just wanted to be there to make sure the cars were set up correctly and the tire compounds were comparable, big difference.

    Lastly, that Ferrari isn’t based on their crowning jewel, a halo car to show the technical and design expertise of Ferrari. Ferrari doesn’t want to compete anymore. They’d like rest on their laurels and you could argue they’ve earned that. Meanwhile, Porsche and McLaren are working hard on toppling each other and its creating a wonderful engineering race.

    • DMax

      In which way does Porsche and McLaren toppling each other or creating an engineering race? What Mac does that ferrari can’t? Ferrari just showed SF90, nothing like it is being made by Mac or Porsche. Speedtail sort of, but it’s a limited edition halo model, while SF90 is regular production. Halo Ferrari is coming as well.

      Meanwhile all 3 are racing in GT3 pretty closely. Not one is racing their halo models. Only Ferrari is involved in F1, which it will for as long as it’s around.

      • Ben

        I don’t want to get into a “your car vs my car” argument here, but I think if you ask most enthusiast who’s producing the fastest and best engineered supercar, most would say McLaren. Lamborghini has kept its self in the conversation by repeatedly capturing Nurburgring lap records, but I think the sentiment is still Lambos are mainly for the road rather than track weapons.

        McLaren’s 675LT was a revelation to all critics and experts who drove it, comparing it to Ferrari or Porsche was a failed attempt as the McLaren was faster, stiffer and more lethal on the track. The P1 was also a great halo car, but soon eclipsed by the other worldly performance seen by the 720s. Which many consider the golden divide between supercar and hypercar. Its ability to be so ravenous and yet livable has arguably never been accomplished so well by any supercar.

        I won’t get into Porsche. If you’re an automotive enthusiast, you understand the relatively slow, but constant evolution 911 has had. The 911 is the posterboy for “more than the sum of its parts”. Ferrari is a fine automobile, but at the end of the day what is valued most about them currently is their design and sound (less now that turbos are being introduced).

        No matter what, a Ferrari will always be a prized possession regardless of performance, but if you had to rank Porsche’s GT2RS, Lamborghini’s Huracan Perfermonte and McLaren’s 720s (which isn’t even a track variant) and Ferrari’s Pista, by most accounts the Pista would come fourth based on performance solely.

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