Toyota is bringing its various overseas racing activities under the common banner of Gazoo Racing and the purview of its new Motor Sports Group, coordinating the company's various racing activities around the world.
F1, Le Mans, rally, hillclimbs... Toyota Motorsport GmbH has done it all, and keeps almost all of its machinery in a hall underneath one of its wind tunnels. Xcar swung through Cologne, Germany, to check it all out, and thankfully didn't forget to bring a video camera or two along.
Toyota Motorsport GmbH has developed cars for all manner of racing, up to and including Formula One and Le Mans. But it got its start back in 1979 in rally competition, winning four drivers' and three manufacturers' titles in the World Rally Championship. And now it's announced a new rally car.
The people at Toyota Motorsport GmbH have been responsible for the Japanese automaker's motorsports efforts since the 1970s, but since Toyota pulled out of Formula One after the 2009 season, the tuning shop has been developing a super sedan based on the Lexus LS called the Sports 650. Details on TMG's first road car have been scarce, but XCAR was recently invited to drive the 641-horsepower Lexus on track.
If you're going to make a super sedan, you'd better do it in Germany. That's where Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz do it, along with third parties like Alpina, Brabus and G-Power, among others. Deutschland is the epicenter of the movement, regularly churning out the most powerful four-door rockets in the world. It's also where one of the racing divisions for Toyota has been hard at work on the TMG Sports 650.
Last year, Toyota won the electric title at the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb with the Toyota Motorsport GmbH EV P001 in a time of 10 minutes, 15.380 seconds for the 12.42-mile uphill course. For the 91st running of the demanding event, which will take place at the end of June, TMG is coming back with the EV P002, once again with Rod Millen behind the wheel.
Toyota Motorsports GmbH has finally unveiled the super sedan it has been working on, and its official name is the TMG Sports 650. Why 650? Because this Lexus LS-based road rocket generates 650 PS, or about 641 horsepower, from its twin-turbo 5.0L V8 engine that's mated to an eight-speed transmission capable of handling all that force.
If the newly improved 2013 Lexus LS is aimed at taking on the Mercedes-Benz S-Class, then it sounds like Lexus might have a new model in mind to take on the monstrous S65 AMG. Motor Authority has images of what it claims to be a wind tunnel prototype for a souped-up LS we first saw testing on the Nürburgring a couple years ago. We already knew this car was being developed by Toyota Motorsport GmbH (TMG) which could become a factory tuner arm for Toyota like AMG, and the report says that the
Toyota is getting serious about building performance versions of its current models. The manufacturer hopes to turn Toyota Motorsport GmbH, the crew behind the Toyota Le Mans effort and the automaker's now defunct Formula One team, into a factory-backed tuner. TMG currently handles almost everything motorsport related for Toyota with the exception of engine building, and the group is currently hard at work on what could develop into a World Rally Championship entry in the near future.
Those crazy guys at Toyota Motorsport GmbH (TMG). Not content to rest on laurels garnered by their record-setting assault at Nürburgring last year, they've been working on improving the TMG EV P001 – henceforth to be known as the TMG EV P002 – in preparation of a bid for glory at the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb.
Lexus fans are abuzz over the sight of a potential new LS-based super sedan, and details about the mystery machine are leaking out across the intertubes. The folks at AutoGuide have somehow managed to get shots of the Nürburgring-running prototype parked in a garage along witha a conveniently displayed spec sheet which gives us a lot more information about the sporty four door shown testing on the 'Ring.
The shutdown of Toyota's Formula One program should have resulted in a mass layoff of the team's personnel, right? Well it didn't. While some may have gone their separate ways, others have been hired; and despite the essential absence of an actual F1 program, Toyota Motorsport GmbH is still alive and keeping plenty busy.