Anton Andres / Toyota | March 10, 2017 14:29
Toyota Gazoo Racing chief eyes building a lightweight sports car
It could be said that adrenaline is pumping through Toyota's veins at the moment. The Japanese automaker is in the middle of developing the Supra, competing and winning in the WRC and just released a hotter version of the Yaris.
In an interview with Evo magazine, Toyota engineer, and Gazoo Racing chief, Tetsuya Tada said that they are developing a sports car range that consists of the “three brothers”. What Tada was pertaining to was the marque's sports car lineup from 30 years ago, consisting of the Supra, Celica and MR2.
At the moment, Toyota's lone pure sports car is the 86, serving as the spiritual successor of the Toyota Sprinter Trueno and Corolla Levin. With its size, the 86 was also dubbed the successor of the rear wheel drive Celicas from the early 80's. The Supra meanwhile is being co-developed with BMW and is expected to be revealed in a few more years. That leaves a spiritual successor of the MR2 an open possibility.
Tada did not divulge any more details regarding lightweight sports car. If one were to follow the “Three Brothers” plan of Tada, Toyota's next car might just be a compact, mid-engined car. Back in 2015, there were promising signs pointing towards the production of a small sports car. That year, Toyota revealed the S-FR Concept and there was even a leaked spec sheet, hinting that it was close to production. Two years on however, the car never came to fruition. The S-FR's engine was also placed at the front, making it more of a Toyota Sport 800 successor rather than a reborn MR2.
Details are scarce at the moment but Tada's hints signals more sporty offerings from Toyota. Tada adds that they are aiming to employ hybrid tech seen in their endurance prototypes in the lightweight sports car. Tada also said that they as “working very hard” to bring the lightweight hybrid sports car in to production and wants the cars to hit the roads “as soon as possible”.