Toyota Teases Next Year's Le Mans Entrant and Company's First Hypercar
It's called the GR Super Sport, for Gazoo Racing Super Sport.
By: Evan Williams
June 17, 2019
If you haven’t yet seen the results of the 2019 24 Hours of Le Mans that finished yesterday, then this has a few spoilers you’ll likely want to avoid. But Toyota isn’t sitting on the laurels of winning the race for the second year running. While the Toyota Gazoo Racing LMP1 cars were taking first and second place in the race, back at home office, Toyota was releasing video of next year’s car.
For next year, the top series at Le Mans will transition from the current field of prototypes to something slightly more production-based. The Le Mans Hypercar. It’s a new set of rules that will allow entries of the newest fleet of hypercars coming from some of the top automakers. Cars like the upcoming Aston Martin Valkyrie, possibly a new McLaren, and Toyota’s own entry.
It’s called the GR Super Sport, for Gazoo Racing Super Sport. Toyota has just announced it’ll be entering the class, which calls for 1,100 kg curb weights and around 750 hp.
The GR SS was announced at Le Mans last year, and the weekend’s announcement was that the car would race at Le Mans next year.
Along with the news, Toyota has given us a new video of company CEO Akio Toyota and factory hotshoe Kamui Kobayashi circling Fuji Speedway in a camouflaged prototype of the car.
One of the rules of the Hypercar class is that automakers have to build at least 20 within two years of the start of competition. Which means that a roadgoing version of the GR Super Sport would have to arrive by June of 2022.
What could power the road car and racer, and the first Japanese hypercar? Rumour has it the driveline will be related to the Toyota Hybrid System – Racing that’s in the TS050 racer that won this year. That uses a twin-turbo 2.4L V6 that makes 493hp and has two electric motors that add another 493 hp.
Class rules say that the hybrid portion of the racer can’t make more than 270 hp, which puts a version of this with a tuned-down electrical system right on the edge. And it could mean a road car that makes even more power than the racer. Which it’ll need to keep up with the likes of the V12 Valkyrie and the Mercedes-AMG One. Toyota has cleverly replaced the sounds of the car with a music track, hampering our guesses.