TOYOTA GAZOO Racing Outlines 2019 Motorsports Activities

TOYOTA GAZOO Racing is a racing company positioning motorsports activities as the basis of our quest to create ever-better cars. From products developed through these activities to the establishment of the GR Garage, TOYOTA GAZOO Racing’s motorsports activities have been promoted as a comprehensive method of increasing numbers of car fans.

At last month’s North American International Auto Show in Detroit, we unveiled the new “Supra,” which is set to become the first global model in the GR series line-up. The new Supra incorporates the knowledge and know-how that TOYOTA GAZOO Racing has accumulated thus far, and has been developed with the goal of enabling customers to fully experience the joy of driving. We have positioned the new Supra as our flagship model and, by feeding back knowledge gained through motorsports activities into the development of new products, we intend to further expand the GR series line-up.

In 2018, TOYOTA GAZOO Racing achieved the long-desired goal of winning the 24 Hours of Le Mans and also secured the WRC manufacturers’ title, demonstrating that the challenges we have embarked on are leading to concrete results. However, we will not rest on our laurels. In order to deliver the anticipation and excitement of driving to a wider audience, we will engage in the motorsports activities listed below in 2019. TOYOTA GAZOO Racing will compete in the 2019-2020 WEC season. (The driver line-up will be announced at a later date.)With team line-ups, we will also compete in the Nürburgring 24 Hours Endurance Race and other races in Japan respectively. In addition, we will focus on “e-Motor Sports” in collaboration with Gran Turismo SPORT and other racing games. We are engaging in such various motorsports activities to e-Motor Sports.

LEXUS LC500 in 2018 SUPER GT GT500 Class

LEXUS LC500 in 2018 SUPER GT GT500 Class

SF19 in Japanese Super Formula Championship in 2019

SF19 in Japanese Super Formula Championship in 2019

Going forward, TOYOTA GAZOO Racing will continue to work together with affiliates to create ever-better cars through motorsports activities. At the same time, through our products and sales outlet, we aim to satisfy the passion of car lovers, and bring the joy of cars to an even wider audience. We look forward to your continued support in the 2019 season.

Outline of Toyota’s 2019 Motorsports Activities


(1) GT500 Class

- In 2019, LEXUS GAZOO Racing will continue to enter the Lexus “LC 500”.

- LEXUS GAZOO Racing will support 6 teams and 6 vehicles supported by TRD.

Class Team Vehicle No. Driver Tires
LEXUS TEAM LEMANS WAKO’S WAKO’S 4CR LC500 6 Kazuya Oshima (Japan) BS
Kenta Yamashita (Japan)
LEXUS TEAM WedsSport BANDOH WedsSport ADVAN LC500 19 Yuji Kunimoto (Japan) YH
Sho Tsuboi (Japan)
LEXUS TEAM au TOM’S au TOM’S LC500 36 Kazuki Nakajima (Japan) BS
Yuhi Sekiguchi (Japan)
LEXUS TEAM KeePer TOM’S KeePer TOM’S LC500 37 Ryo Hirakawa (Japan) BS
Nick Cassidy (New Zealand)
Hiroaki Ishiura (Japan)
LEXUS TEAM SARD DENSO KOBELCO SARD LC500 39 Heikki Kovalainen (Finland) BS
Yuichi Nakayama (Japan)

Tire Brand: BS: Bridgestone, YH: Yokohama

(2) GT300 Class

- In the GT300 class, TOYOTA GAZOO Racing will enter 2 Toyota “Prius” and LEXUS GAZOO Racing will enter 3 Lexus “RC F GT3” models.

Class Team Vehicle No. Driver Tires
GT300 apr TOYOTA GR SPORT PRIUS PHV apr GT 30 Hiroaki Nagai (Japan) YH
Manabu Orido (Japan)
31 Koki Saga (Japan) BS
Yuki Nakayama (Japan)
Panther arto Team Thailand arto RC F GT3 35 TBD YH
LM corsa SYNTIUM LMcorsa RC F GT3 60 Hiroki Yoshimoto (Japan) DL
Ritomo Miyata (Japan)
K-tunes Racing K-tunes RC F GT3 96 Morio Nitta (Japan) BS
Sena Sakaguchi (Japan)

Tire Brand: BS: Bridgestone, YH: Yokohama, DL: Dunlop

2) Japanese Super Formula Championship

- TRD will supply the two-liter four-cylinder direct-injection gasoline turbo engine(Biz-01F) for 11 vehicles in 6 teams.

- All vehicles will be equipped with tires made by Yokohama Rubber.

Team No. Driver
KONDO RACING 3 Kenta Yamashita (Japan)
4 Yuji Kunimoto (Japan)
TEAM LEMANS 7 Artem Markelov (Russia)
8 Kazuya Oshima (Japan)
carrozzeria Team KCMG 18 Kamui Kobayashi (Japan)
TEAM IMPUL 19 Yuhi Sekiguchi (Japan)
20 Ryo Hirakawa (Japan)
VANTELIN TEAM TOM’S 36 Kazuki Nakajima (Japan)
37 Nick Cassidy (New Zealand)
JMS P.MU/CERUMO・INGING 38 Hiroaki Ishiura (Japan)
39 Sho Tsuboi (Japan)

3) Nürburgring 24 Hours Endurance Race

- TOYOTA GAZOO Racing positions the Nürburgring 24 Hours endurance race as the starting point of activities aimed to make ever-better cars, and will participate for the 13th consecutive year in 2019. Through participation in the race, we seek activities aimed at developing our people and cars, and support the development of Toyota’s production vehicles.

- The 47th Nürburgring 24 Hours endurance race (official name: 47. ADAC TOTAL 24h-Rennen) will take place on June 22–23, 2019.

- This year, TOYOTA GAZOO Racing will enter 2 cars: the Lexus LC will compete for the second year in a row, while the Supra—resurrected for the first time in 17 years—will make its debut. By fitting both models with a number of advanced development technologies that will be used in future sportscars and other production vehicles, we aim to support the creation of ever-better cars.

Vehicle / Class Lexus LC (scheduled to compete in the SP-PRO class) Supra (scheduled to compete in the SP8T class)
Main Specifications Engine 2UR-GSE modified Confidential
Tires Bridgestone Confidential
Driver Takeshi Tsuchiya (Japan) Masahiro Sasaki (Japan)
Naoya Gamo (Japan) Uwe Kleen (Germany)
Takamitsu Matsui (Japan) Herwig Daenens (Belgium)*1
Yuichi Nakayama (Japan) Hisashi Yabuki (Japan)*2

*1 A member of Toyota Motor Europe
*2 A member of Toyota Motor Corporation


4) Customer Motorsports (GT3)

- Through global sales and its customer support of the Lexus RC F GT3, LEXUS GAZOO Racing will enable customers from around the world to enjoy GT3 races, and contribute to enhancing the image of the Lexus brand. LEXUS GAZOO Racing will also provide feedback of technologies developed through its race activities to its production vehicles, and enhance the products.

- In 2019, Lexus RC F GT3 racecars will compete in various races in the world.

Region Series Class Team Number of
U.S. IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar
Japan SUPER GT GT300 See “1) SUPER GT (2) GT300 Class” 3
Super Taikyu ST-X Max Racing 1


- Toyota will continue to compete in the NASCAR series supported by Toyota Motor North America and T.R.D U.S.A., Inc.

- Toyota will compete with the Toyota “Camry” in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, with the Toyota “Supra” in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, and with the Toyota “Tundra” in the NASCAR Gander Outdoors Truck Series.

- All vehicles will be equiped with Goodyear tires.

[Toyota Teams and Drivers for the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series]

Team No. Driver
Joe Gibbs Racing 11 Denny Hamlin (U.S.)
18 Kyle Busch (U.S.)
19 Martin Truex Jr. (U.S.)
20 Erik Jones (U.S.)
Leavine Family Racing 95 Matt DiBenedetto (U.S.)

6) Driver Development Initiatives in Japan

(1) TOYOTA GAZOO Racing Rally Challenge Program

- Launched in 2015, the program seeks to nurture young rally drivers who can compete on a global stage.

- With the cooperation of Tommi Mäkinen, drivers in the program will take part primarily in WRC2, and continue their development through participation in actual rallies.

Driver Co-driver
Takamoto Katsuta (Japan) Daniel Barritt (UK)

(2) Toyota Young Drivers Program (TDP)

- This program supports young drivers to be able to compete in top racing categories around the world.

- The program is dedicated to identifying new talent, and provides a framework to hone the abilities of participants, depending on their particular strengths.

- Sho Tsuboi will make the step up to both the Super GT GT500 class and Super Formula.

[List of Toyota Young Drivers Program Participants for 2019]

Driver Race Category Team Remarks / 2018 Results
(11th overall in series)
・Japanese Super Formula Championship
(8th overall in series)
Japanese Super Formula Championship KONDO RACING
Sho Tsuboi SUPER GT (GT500) LEXUS TEAM WedsSport BANDOH ・Japanese Formula 3 Championship
(Japanese Champion)
(7th overall in series)
Japanese Super Formula Championship JMS P.MU/CERUMO・INGING
Ritomo Miyata Japanese Formula 3 Championship Corolla Chukyo Kuo TEAM TOM’S ・Japanese Formula 3 Championship
(2nd overall in series)
(15th overall in series)
SUPER GT (GT300) LM corsa
Kazuto Kotaka Japanese Formula 3 Championship Corolla Chukyo Kuo TEAM TOM’S ・FIA-F4 Japanese Championship
(3rd overall in series)

[2019 Race Categories for Toyota Young Drivers Program Graduates]

Driver Race Category Team
Kazuki Nakajima FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) TOYOTA GAZOO Racing
Japanese Super Formula Championship VANTELIN TEAM TOM’S
Kamui Kobayashi FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) TOYOTA GAZOO Racing
Japanese Super Formula Championship carrozzeria Team KCMG
Japanese Super Formula Championship JMS P.MU/CERUMO・INGING
Japanese Super Formula Championship TEAM LEMANS
Yuji Kunimoto SUPER GT (GT500) LEXUS TEAM WedsSport BANDOH
Japanese Super Formula Championship KONDO RACING
Ryo Hirakawa SUPER GT(GT500) LEXUS TEAM KeePer TOM’S
Japanese Super Formula Championship TEAM IMPUL
Nürburgring 24 Hours endurance race TOYOTA GAZOO Racing

(All Toyota Young Drivers Program graduates are Japanese)

■ Formula Toyota Racing School (FTRS)

- The school aims to discover and cultivate racing drivers to be able to compete in top racing categories both in Japan and around the world. It also seeks to widen the base of the motorsports pyramid in a healthy manner by educating people on correct driving skills.

- Support for race participation in future seasons will be provided to students deemed to have the greatest driving potential. (FTRS dates for 2019 are undecided.)

■ FIA F4 Japanese Championship

- TOYOTA GAZOO Racing will support young drivers competing in the FIA F4 Japanese Championship, which is the entry class formula category.

- Seven events and 14 races have been scheduled.

7) 5 Continents Drive Project

- Toyota began its 5 Continents Drive Project in Australia in 2014, with the same aim for “ever-better cars” as motorsports activities of TOYOTA GAZOO Racing. Employees drive Toyota vehicles by diverse types of roads used by customers around the world, gaining experience and knowledge of road conditions that cannot be predicted or replicated on test courses. The understanding obtained in this exercise supports Toyota’s goal of creating “ever-better cars,” and cultivates expertise in employees. With the milestone year of 2020, when Tokyo hosts the Olympics and Paralympics approaching, TOYOTA GAZOO Racing continues to carry out 5 Continents activities.

- In 2018, Toyota employees participated alongside members from SUZUKI MOTOR CORPORATION, Hino Motors Ltd., and TOYOTA AUTO BODY Co., Ltd. in the Africa stage of the project; a total of 76 people covered 10,600 kilometers over a period of two months. The team drove across Africa’s diverse and wide-ranging roads, where they experienced first-hand the harsh conditions in which vehicles were used and listened to direct feedback from African customers. As a result, team members were moved to consider what it meant to make “ever-better cars,” exchanged views with their colleagues, and devoted themselves to thinking about cars.

- In 2019, Toyota will move to Asia and embark on the sixth and final leg of the project, starting in the Middle East.

Past Legs of the 5 Continents Drive

Year Continent Distance driven Number of days driven Characteristics
2014 Australia Approx. 20,000 km 72days Deserts, poorly maintained roads, and other rough terrain were navigated in a region that is said to encapsulate a variety of roads from around the world.
2015 North America Approx. 28,000 km 109days The North American leg was divided into a summer and winter season: Death Valley and other regions of intense heat were tackled in the summer, while Alaska and eastern Canada were driven in the winter.
2016 Latin America Approx. 20,000 km 84days Mud roads in the tropics, mountain passes at an altitude of 5,640 meters, deserts, and other roads were traveled.
2017 Europe Approx. 21,000 km 85days In the birthplace of the automobile, Toyota cars were compared to their European counterparts as they strove to enhance the collection and analysis of driving data. Divided into summer and winter seasons, participating cars drove highways and embarked on long-distance journeys.
2018 Africa Approx. 21,000 km 49days Commuter and daily use roads, unpaved roads, high-altitude mountain roads, safaris, deserts, and other road types unique to Africa.

<Information from this point onwards has already been announced>

8) FIA World Rally Championship (WRC)

- TOYOTA GAZOO Racing will race the “Yaris WRC” (Japan name: “Vitz”) developed in Finland under the leadership of Team Principal Tommi Mäkinen. The engine is a 1.6-liter direct-injection turbo GI4A, developed at Toyota Motorsport GmbH (TMG).

Team name TOYOTA GAZOO Racing World Rally Team (WRT)
Team chairman Akio Toyoda
Team principal Tommi Mäkinen (Finland)
Vehicle Yaris WRC (length: 4,085 mm; width: 1,875 mm)
Engine GI4A (1.6-liter direct-injection turbo with a maximum output of at least 380 horsepower)
Tires Michelin
No. Driver / Co-driver
8 Driver Ott Tänak (Estonia)
Co-driver Martin Järveoja (Estonia)
10 Driver Jari-Matti Latvala (Finland)
Co-driver Miikka Anttila (Finland)
5 Driver Kris Meeke (UK)
Co-driver Seb Marshall (UK)


9) FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC)

- The FIA World Endurance Championship has taken place every year since 2012.

- 2018–2019 is a “Super Season,” and 2019 begins with Round 6, the 1000 Miles of Sebring, on March 15, 2019, and concludes with Round 8, the 24 Hours of Le Mans, on June 15–16, 2019.

- TOYOTA GAZOO Racing will compete in the races with two of the improved “TS050 HYBRID” models, which are developed and operated by TMG.

- The THS-R (TOYOTA Hybrid System-Racing) powertrain, developed at TOYOTA Higashifuji Technical Center in Japan, not only follows the existing four-wheel regenerative/drive system, but also improves the reliability of the engine, electric motors/generators and batteries. These technologies will be leveraged to the mass-production hybrid and electric vehicles.

- TS050 HYBRID will be equipped with Michelin tires.

- TOYOTA GAZOO Racing will compete in the 2019-2020 WEC season with two TS050 HYBRID models. The eight-round season will begin with the 4 Hours of Silverstone on September 1 2019 and concludes with the 24 Hours of Le Mans on June 13-14 2020. The driver line-up will be announced at a later date.

<2018-2019 WEC season>

Team Vehicle No. Driver
(2018-2019 season)
TS050 HYBRID 7 Mike Conway (UK)
Kamui Kobayashi (Japan)
José María López (Argentina)
8 Sébastien Buemi (Switzerland)
Kazuki Nakajima (Japan)
Fernando Alonso (Spain)

*2019-2020 season’s line-up will be announced at a later date.


10) Japanese Rally Championship

- We will participate in the highest-category rally championship in Japan, and refine both our people and cars as part of our efforts for making “ever-better cars.”

- The team’s engineers and mechanics are Toyota employees, and the company’s employees are involved in all aspects of the JRC, from car manufacturing to participation in the rallies themselves.

Team Vehicle Driver / Co-driver Engineers and Mechanics
TOYOTA GAZOO Racing TGR Vitz GRMN Rally Tomoyuki Shinkai / Yuichi Ando Toyota Employees

11) Dakar Rally

- Toyota regularly supports Team Land Cruiser Toyota Auto Body (TLC), which competes in the Dakar Rally with Toyota “Land Cruiser 200.”

Team Land Cruiser

Vehicle Driver / Co-driver Position in Production Vehicle Division1 Position in Diesel Class2 Overall Position
Car no. 350 Driver Christian Lavieille (France) 1st 1st 24th
Co-driver Jean Pierre Garcin (France)
Car no. 349 Driver Akira Miura (Japan)3 2nd 2nd 29th
Co-driver Laurent Lichtleuchter (France)

1 Includes gasoline and diesel classes
2 TLC competed in the diesel class of the production vehicle division
3 Toyota Auto Body Employee

- Also, many teams including global Toyota group, are challenging the Dakar Rally with Toyota’s vehicles.

- The 2019 Dakar Rally finished on January 17th. TOYOTA GAZOO Racing South Africa, car no.301, won the rally in a Hilux. This is a momentous first - the first time a Toyota vehicle has achieved this position at the pinnacle of the legendary Dakar Rally. Team Land Cruiser Toyota Auto Body (TLC) , car no. 350, has emerged victorious for the sixth consecutive year in the Production Division category. And Hino Team Sugawara, car no. 510, came in first place, as well, for the tenth consecutive year, with the Hino Ranger in the Truck category (10-liter engine or smaller).

TOYOTA GAZOO Racing South Africa

Vehicle Driver/Co-driver Overall Position
Car no.301 Driver N. Al-Attiyah (Qatar) 1st
Co-driver M. Baumel (France)
Car no.304 Driver G. de Villiers (South Africa) 9th
Co-driver D. Von Zitzewitz (Germany)
Car no.309 Driver B. Ten Brinke (Netherlands) Retired
Co-driver X Panseri (France)

HINO Team Sugawara

Vehicle Driver / Co-driver Truck category
(less than 10 liters displacement class)
Car no.510 Driver Teruhito Sugawara (Japan) 1st
Co-driver Katsumi Hamura (Japan)
Car no.517 Driver Yoshimasa Sugawara (Japan) Retired
Co-driver Ahito Sakurai (Japan)


12) Japan-Based Participatory Motorsport Events

- In the hope of extending the enjoyment of driving, TOYOTA GAZOO Racing will provide a full range of driving activities at venues around Japan in collaboration with the various regions and circuits, with increased support for people who would like to compete in participatory motorsports events such as races and rallies.

(1) TOYOTA GAZOO Racing 86/BRZ Race (organized by the Toyota Cars Race Association)

- The 86/BRZ Race started in 2013 and is a one-make race in which only Toyota “86Racing” and Subaru BRZ RA Racing compete in. Since 2015, the race has been divided into the Professional Series and the Clubman Series. While many professional drivers who have raced in the Super GT and Super Formula compete in the Professional Series, only amateur drivers are allowed to compete in the Clubman Series.

(2) TOYOTA GAZOO Racing Netz Cup Vitz Race (organized by the Toyota Cars Race Association)

- The Netz Cup Vitz Race is an amateur race open to anyone who drives a “Vitz RS Racing” or “Vitz GR Sports” Racing Package and holds a class A license. A popular race with a strong and consistent fan-base, it started in 2000 and will mark its 20th year in 2019. The race is held at seven leading circuits nationwide, with more than half of the participants being beginner racers, and many female drivers participating as well.

(3) TOYOTA GAZOO Racing Rally Challenge (organized by the TOYOTA GAZOO Racing Rally Challenge Office)

- The TGR Rally Challenge is a series of one-day rallies held only on Sundays for easy entry. It serves as an introduction to domestic rallies, and is held at locations across Japan. Part of the series’ attraction lies in the fact that anybody with a class B license is eligible to enter with a hybrid or AT versions of 86, Vitz, and “Aqua” models.

(4) TOYOTA GAZOO Racing Driving Experience

- This is a driving event designed to teach everything from the basic vehicle operations of driving, turning, and stopping, to high-level practical driving techniques, with lessons suited to a variety of skill levels.

- TOYOTA GAZOO Racing will hold Program 1, at which attendees can learn basic driving operations, at Mega Web; and Program 2, which is designed for sports driving beginners, and Program 3, which is aimed at experienced sports drivers, at circuits nationwide. We will also hold Program 4, which is a practical program for people intending to compete in the Netz Cup Vitz Race and the 86/BRZ Race, and a Special Program, at which attendees can experience the joy of cars in non-circuit environments.

13) GR Series and GR Garage

GR Series

[Reference] GR series car lineup

GR Garage

In coordination with the launch of the GR series, a number of dealers in Japan are establishing a series of GR Garage shops in cooperation with TOYOTA GAZOO Racing. The garages will act as regional bases that aim to bring the joy of cars to a wide range of customers, with a focus on sports cars and motorsports.

Staffed at all times by dedicated GR Consultants, GR Garage provides a place where car-loving customers can talk with the staff and have fun. The garages will provide opportunities for customers to test-drive the 86 and GR series vehicles1. In addition, they will sell custom parts and TGR collection items, host variety of events and activities, and create a place for adults and children to indulge their love of cars2.
GR Garage shops seek to become “the most exciting car shops in town”―places where car fans can gather, engage in conversation, and share their love of cars. Forty-nine GR Garage shops are scheduled to have opened by the end of March 2019.

1 Test-drive vehicles will vary from garage to garage, depending on the models handled by the managing dealer.
2 GR Garage shops and activities will vary according to the managing dealer. For further details, please ask your local GR Garage

14) Creating Opportunities for Car Lovers and Car Fans to Interact

- TOYOTA GAZOO Racing is working to increase spaces and opportunities for car lovers and motorsports fans to discuss their car-related hopes and dreams, and to talk about the joy of cars.


A festival for car fans and lovers, the event attracts a variety of different vehicles from racecars to the cherished cars of attendees. More than 40,000 people visit the festival every year; in 2019, the festival is scheduled to be held at Fuji Speedway in the beginning of December.


Featuring a range of hands-on activities that demonstrate the appeal of motorsports, this community-based event enables everyone—from children to adults—to enjoy cars and motorsports.
The events, which have close ties with local communities, seek to expand the horizons of car fans, and are scheduled to be held across Japan.

(3) TOYOTA GAZOO Racing will host booths at domestic custom car shows*

We will host booths at the Tokyo Auto Salon and Osaka Automesse, which are held every year in January and February respectively. The booths provide opportunities for the company to interact with car fans and car lovers and, at the same time, enable customer feedback to be incorporated into product planning.

(4) MO-SPO Festival 2019 Suzuka -Motorsports Fan Thanks Day-*

MO-SPO Festival is a joint event held by TOYOTA GAZOO Racing, Honda Motor Co., Ltd., and Mobilityland Corporation (which operates Suzuka Circuit). Through the festival, the three companies aim to exceed their roles as manufacturers and communicate the attractions of a variety of motorsports, demonstrate the joy of driving cars, and inspire car-related hopes and dreams.
In 2019, the event is scheduled to be held at Suzuka Circuit on March 2 and 3.

* Events (1) to (4) will be held in Japan.