Ring any bells? The Toyota GR Super Sport concept first broke cover way back in 2018 at the Tokyo Auto Salon, originally planned as a limited-run homologation special to the new GR010 Hybrid racecar, competing in the World Endurance Championships.
However, it was none other than the Covid-19 pandemic that managed to wreak havoc on the sport, forcing FIA to update the rulebooks for the Le Mans Hypercar class (LMH) with several cost-cutting measures – among which, the 20-unit homologation requirement has been scrapped.
Despite that, Autocar UK reports that Toyota is still forging forward with its plans for the GR Super Sport, acting as the halo model for its Gazoo Racing model line-up which now consists of the GR 86, GR Yaris, and GR Supra, drawing links between its road cars and racing programme.
As part of the cost-cutting measures, the max power output of the LMH cars were slashed by 32% – down to only 680 hp. But according to Autocar, the initially-claimed 1,000 hp output (to match the original GR010 prototype) will still be retained on the road-going Super Sport.
Power will be provided by a 2.4 litre twin-turbo V6 hybrid powertrain, adapted from Toyota’s previous WEC Constructors’ Championship winner, the TS050 Hybrid. No information on how the Toyota Hybrid System – Racing (THR-S) will be utilised here, but sources say that it could feature a tri-motor hybrid system, even potentially exceeding the initial 1,000 hp goal.
Even though the powertrain is not a direct descendent of the GR010 (thanks to the rule changes, necessitating the switch to a 3.5-litre V6 twin-turbo engine), the Toyota GR Super Sport will still bear resemblances to the new WEC racecar in its looks, as seen on the working prototype that the company shown off in last year’s Le Mans race.
The LMH rules dictates a largely fixed bodywork and aerodynamics package on its race cars, with manufacturers given certain areas in which they have freedom to style the bodywork in line with the road cars. Toyota Motorsport chiefs have confirmed that the styling of these portions was done by the GR road car division, so expect to see these elements being replicated on the Super Sport too.
Although the prototype was shown as a topless cabriolet at its performance debut last year, it is believed that the actual car – at least at launch – will be sold as a coupe. Toyota did file a patent for the open canopy concept though, so we won’t be surprised if they introduce a roof-less, door-less variant.
Since there isn’t a 20-unit requirement for the homologation road cars any more, there’s also no indication as to how many units of the GR Super Sport Toyota will actually build. But with the significant amount of money that Toyota has invested in this car, plus the intention for it to be a halo model, we’re guessing that Toyota would probably like to sell more of these.
Interested in one of these? Reservations are not yet open, but you can fill in a questionnaire on the Toyota GR website – with questions such as “how many high performance sport cars you own now” – to register your interest.