It might seem redundant to call a racing series that bills itself as the pinnacle of motorsports "elitist" but that's precisely what Toyota's Senior Managing Director for motorsports, Tadashi Yamashina, said during this weekend's 24 Hours of Nurburgring. Toyota withdrew from Formula one at the end of the 2009 season and according to Yamashina the automaker isn't likely to ever return.

According to Yamashina, Formula One has become so disconnected from mainstream fans over the past two decades that it makes no sense for the company to be involved in the sport. When Akio Toyoda took over as CEO last year he decided that Toyota's racing activities should be in series where the average fan is more directly involved. That means we'll see Toyotas running in venues like NASCAR and GT racing. Perhaps we'll see Toyota in the American Le Mans Series one day. We know the series would certainly welcome more hybrid racers.

[Source: Automotive News - Sub. Req.]