• 18
2010 Lexus LFA racer – Click above for high-res image gallery

Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda has his hands full. In addition to the day-to-day rigors of running the largest automaker in the world, Toyoda is busy combating the negative press and apologizing profusely for the massive amount of recalls customers are enduring. He's also an avid blogger and race driver, and in his most recent entry has announced that he will not, after all, be returning to the wheel of the Lexus LFA for this year's Nürburgring 24.

The embattled auto executive was one of the drivers in last year's event, where Toyota and Gazoo Racing campaigned an LFA prototype to great effect. He was even reported to have brokered the deal with Aston Martin for the iQ-based Cygnet city car at the event last year.

With the announcement that Lexus would be returning with a new LFA racer based on the production model, speculation (fueled by the official announcement) was rampant that Toyoda would return to the cockpit. But Toyoda himself has now dispelled the rumors, leaving the roster of Japanese and German drivers to pilot the car without him this year.




I'm reporting this comment as:

Reported comments and users are reviewed by Autoblog staff 24 hours a day, seven days a week to determine whether they violate Community Guideline. Accounts are penalized for Community Guidelines violations and serious or repeated violations can lead to account termination.


    • 1 Second Ago
  • 18 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      I agree with the above that this is a good PR move, to sit out of the race, will direct the public that he is attending the current pressing issues of toyota recalls, as for sittin out to get better results, that could also be another benefit =P
      • 4 Years Ago
      See what you did America? SEE WHAT YOU DID!?
      • 4 Years Ago
      Does anyone know how Mr. Toyoda drives? Like a kitty (meow meow) or a dog (woof woof)? :)
      • 4 Years Ago

      The LFA never really competed with the class, more like testing their car up against the best race cars, even the VW Scirocco was more modified then the LFA in the 24Hr! If they were really competing why would they get Toyoda & a man who owns a Toyota dealership to drive? It was more for publicity. You can watch the footage on Youtube. This year looks to be different doe, with the wide arch kit fitted etc. If people doubt Lexus/Toyota's racing pedigree I refer you to the JGTC where Toyota has won with their SC430 & Supra for years! They just need Keiichi Tsuchiya & Orido behind the wheel!

      Why do so many people hate on this car? Just because it has the ambition to challenge the other super cars like Ferrari's & Porsche's? Why? We should be encouraging it, I want nothing else but to have more cars like this released, it will make things much more interesting rather then see another red Ferrari or a clinically designed Audi roll out the factory!


      Ps. Apart from the Veyron this is the best engineering in a production sports car period!
      martin
      • 4 Years Ago
      TOYOTA: MOVING FORWARD
      whether you want to or not
      • 4 Years Ago
      This will be interesting to see how all the Toyota-made vehicles will attempt the first corner while exceeding speeds of 200km/h (lame Toyota joke :P)

      Anyway, this is the best move for the image of Toyota given the recent attacks by the media. Hopefully Toyota is able to regain their image after all of this.
        • 4 Years Ago
        you do realize this is the first year for it's production variant, right? You do realize that the car didn't 'blow up', right? That it was hit by another car in the rear and caused the fire in the REAR MOUNTED RADIATORS, right? You do realize you're a blatant hater of anything that isn't VW owned, right?

        Enough of the ranting, I'm going to laugh when the LFA actually places well this year. There's no reason it shouldn't. You also don't know anything about the 24hour races at the 'ring either. If you did you would know the LFA wasn't in the same class as those porsche's and audi's you're talking about. The class the LFA was in is called SP8, or close to production. That means the car isn't a race car but rather the car made for the street with a roll cage and safety equipment along with race slicks. In other words the LFA was basicly stock. The Porshe GT3 RSR's and Audi R8 LMS cars were race cars in the SP9 class. There is no way the LFA was going to keep up with 500HP 2600lb. full out race cars equal to FIA GT3 or GT2. But the LFA being almost completely stock for the pre-production model ran lap times only 7 seconds off the best pace of those cars. A car weighing 3200 lbs. with 560HP has a worse power to weight ratio of the other cars in the SP9 class. The other competition in the SP8 class was including an Aston Martin V12 Vantage which won the class. But the LFA was doing lap times at least 10 seconds faster than the Vantage.

        Before you bash things you need to look up the facts. Lexus had hardly any professional drivers on their team the last 2 years. And were running prototypes that have been testing around the ring. There was nothing wrong with the place it finished, most cars there don't even finish the race. To spend 2-3 hours in the pits for each car to check and recheck how everything on the car is working is going to put you towards the rear in any endurance race. Hopefully this year will be an all out attack and not an 'automotive seasoning' like the other two races were. And during the 4 hour race the LFA won it's class. Some supercar!
        • 4 Years Ago
        ... you people do realize this is going to be this cars third year there yes?
      • 4 Years Ago
      This should jog everyone's memory:

      "We’re not sure if you remember but the LFA had a pretty disappointing run each time its been to the 24 Hours endurance race at the Nurburgring. In 2008, one prototype crashed and finished 120th while in 2009 one prototype caught fire and the other finished 87th."

      Yeah, some "super-car". LOL!!!
        • 4 Years Ago
        It's called "prototype" for a reason.
        1. Prototype:(Engineering / General Engineering) one of the first units manufactured of a product, which is tested so that the design can be changed if necessary before the product is manufactured commercially.

        katshot dont embarass yourself. LOL!!!!
        • 4 Years Ago
        I suggest you look at the lengthy DNF list and reflect on what the point of the 24hr race is.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @ Boss , it was a race , not a normal test day on the Ring. there are safety regulations , you don't show up in some unfinished car in a 24h race just to blow up and put others in danger. or maybe this is their new kamikaze philosophy, sell dangerous cars to the population and put unsafe cars on the racetrack, LOL !!!
        • 4 Years Ago
        Guys, try to remember that these entries were at the final stages of a nearly ten year development process. And we are talking about the largest OEM in the world. If you decide to enter a car in this heavily covered race, you have to know that you're going to be heavily scrutinized. It's a high-profile car, being entered in a high-profile race, by the biggest OEM in the world. Sorry but, this car was a major fail in my book.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Turn that car into a GT300 car after the race!!!
      • 4 Years Ago
      Well, he almost has to, its a good PR move. People would be all over him otherwise claiming he's got more important things to attend to.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Dave

        I guess what's usually a 5 hour drive from Nuerburg to Nuernberg is "the same neighbourood" when your gas pedal is stuck on the Autobahn?

        • 4 Years Ago
        Whoa did you stop to think maybe he does not want to be the next mass murderer on trial at Nueremberg? It is in the neighborhood. His cars are killing people and his lies are covering it up.
    • Load More Comments