Toyota’s GR Super Sport hypercar nears production

Early in 2018, at the Tokyo Auto Salon, Toyota introduced the GR Super Sport hypercar concept, based on the company’s World Endurance Championship TS050 racer, which just last weekend won at Le Mans for the second consecutive year. The TS050 also won this year’s WEC title. At the 2018 Le Mans race, Toyota announced that the GR Super Sport would indeed go into production. The GR Super Sport is powered by a drivetrain that combines a Toyota Hybrid System-Racing unit with a 2.4-liter, lean-burn, twin-turbo V-6 combustion engine for a combined 1000 horsepower.

Now, Toyota has released video of Gazoo Racing president Shigeki Tomoyama and Toyota factory driver Morizo Kinoshita putting a camouflaged GR Super Sport prototype through its paces around Fuji Speedway in Japan. If Kinoshita’s name doesn’t ring a bell, you’re probably not a Toyota fanboy, as Morizo-san is the nom-de-race Toyota boss Akio Toyoda used when driving in the 24-hour race at the Nurburgring.

No lap times were released and we haven’t heard yet about possible pricing, but the WEC-inspired Ford GT, which also has a twin-turbo V-6, but no hybrid system, is now priced at $500,000. Some hybrid supercars from other companies, like the Porsche 918 and Koenigsegg Regera, can cost several times as much, though the SF90 Stradale, Ferrari’s new ~1,000 hp hybrid, is rumored to also be in the half-million dollar range.

Toyota is claiming that the relationship between the TS050 and the GR Super Sport is very close, saying that the concept was “composed of mostly the same main parts as the TS050.” The GR Super Sport certainly looks the part, sharing many of the TS050’s aero tricks and general body shape.

Akio Toyoda seems intent on changing his family firm’s image as that of a maker of supremely reliable yet boring cars. The release of the GR Super Sport video follows just a few months after Toyoda’s personal introduction of the revived Supra sports car at the 2019 Detroit Auto Show in January.

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