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980-HP Toyota Concept Could Inspire Future Supercar


If this is any indication of what Toyota’s future supercars and sports cars will be like, count us in.

The Mercedes-AMG Project One and Aston Martin Valkyrie will form a new breed of road-going hypercars utilizing racing technology. And now it’s Toyota’s turn, with the reveal of the Gazoo Racing GR Super Sport Concept at the Tokyo Auto Salon following last year’s teaser. Its striking design is heavily inspired by Toyota’s LMP1 racer, the TS050 Hybrid, and Toyota says the showcar also shares many of its components too, so it can safely be described as a race car for the road.

Like the race car it’s inspired by, the Super Sport Concept is powered by a twin-turbo 2.4-liter V6 engine and a Toyota-Hybrid System-Racing powertrain producing a combined output of 986 horsepower. It rides on 18-inch wheels wrapped in massive 330/710 R18 tires and has the two exhaust tips mounted up high at the back instead of a rear window. There are no headlights or regular windows either, so it doesn't make a very practical road car. Conventional side mirrors have been replaced with cameras. Its aerodynamic design looks dramatic from every angle thanks to a massive front splitter, a large rear diffuser, and a full-width rear wing, and some sizeable side vents.

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It may be a concept car for now, but Toyota’s President Akio Toyoda has previously expressed a strong desire to make a race-inspired hybrid supercar for the road. Gazoo Racing President Shigeki Tomoyama has also hinted that the Super Sport will eventually spawn a production model in the future. “Rather than developing production cars into sports cars, we aim to work out how to incorporate the know-how developed through races and rallies into production cars amid various restrictions, and this is how competing contributes to Toyota Gazoo Racing's efforts toward making ever-better cars,” he said.

"Thus, this is the starting point for Toyota's completely new challenge to develop sports cars from active race cars. Although it will be some time before you all have the opportunity to get behind the wheel, I hope that the GR Super Sport Concept will give you a taste of what we aim to achieve with our next-generation sports cars.” If this is any indication of what Toyota’s future supercars and sports cars will be like, count us in. We already know that Toyota’s Gazoo performance division is plotting a new halo sports car as a successor to the iconic Supra, so it seems possible that it could adopt the Super Sport Concept’s hybrid powertrain.