Toyota Confirms Hybrid for Le Mans

Toyota has confirmed its intention to take part in next year­s Le Mans 24 Hours endurance race. Right now the company is working on a brand new LMP1 chassis in Germany, while a few thousand kilometres to the east, in Japan, development has already started on a new petrol hybrid powertrain.

 

The company says it will not only take part in Le Mans next year, but also in a number of other endurance races. The aim is to explore the racing potential of Toyota­s hybrid cars.

 

The hybrid race team will have its base at Toyota Motorsport­s headquarters in Cologne, Germany. The new hybrid model is expected to be ready for extensive tests early next year before the racing season starts.

 

The chairman and Senior Managing Office of Toyota, Tadashi Yamashina, said ¬We want to write a new page in the history of the Le Mans 24 Hours, as well as in the FIA World Endurance Championship, through our use of hybrid technology.®

 

He added that, although Toyota has taken part in Le Mans before, using hybrid cars will be a totally new challenge. Toyota achieved great success in the FIA World Endurance Championship and the company wants to repeat this feat in the Le Mans 24 Hours endurance race.

A Toyota GT-One established a new lap record in the Le Mans 24 Hours race of 1999.

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