Products, Technology

History of Toyota's Motor Sports Activities

With the objective of improving both its corporate image and brand image, Toyota Motor Corporation has been actively promoting motor sports activities worldwide, to showcase the greatness, joy, and limitless possibilities of cars.

Toyota teams have raced in Japanese races such as GT car races and the Formula NIPPON, as well as international rallies and endurance races such as the World Rally Championship, the 24 Hours of Le Mans and top categolies of international formula car race such as CART, Indy Car Series and F-1. Toyota is also training world-class drivers of the future through its Toyota Young Drivers Program (TDP). Furthermore, Toyota has been actively promoting customer-participation motor sports since 2010. Through these activities, Toyota is enhancing its image as a corporation that thrives on challenge.

Year
Description
1957
The Toyopet Crown becomes the first Japanese car to enter the Fifth Round Mobilgas Rally round Australia, placing 47th among the 52 cars completing the race (winning third place among foreign entries)
1958
Toyota wins first place in the First Yomiuri Around Japan Rally.
1963
Toyota wins first place in three classes in Group C (Touring Cars) in the First Japanese Grand Prix Race
1965
Fuji Speedway completed
The Toyota Sports 800 is entered in the First All-Japan Automobile Club Championship Race, winning first place in the GT-1 Group
1966
In speed trials the Toyota 2000GT achieves world records in three categories and international records in 13 categories
Toyota enters the 2000GT in the Suzuka 1000km Race, winning first place for the first time
1967
Toyota teams enter the first Fuji 24-Hour Endurance Race with the Toyota 2000GT winning the championship, and the Toyota Sports 800 winning in two classes
1968
Toyota enters the Fifth Japanese Grand Prix Race with the Toyota 7 (3 L), which wins its first class championship
Toyota enters the Celica 1600GT in the Monte Carlo Rally for the first time (marking Toyota's first step in the European rounds)
1969
The Toyota 7 (5 L) wins the championship in the World Challenge Cup Fuji 200-Mile (NIPPON CAN-AM)
1972
Team Toyota Andersson enters the RAC Rally with the Celica 1600GT as a works team, winning the class title
Toyota team with Japanese drivers enter the Macau Grand Prix Senior Group Class 2 with the Celica 1600GT, winning the championship
1973
Toyota enters the Corolla 1600 in the Press-on-Regardless Rally of the World Rally Championship (WRC*1), achieving the first WRC win for Toyota
Toyota enters the Celica 1600GT in the Nurburgring 6-Hour Race, placing 6th overall and winning a class championship
Toyota enters the Celica 1600GT in the Spa 24 Hour Race, placing 9th overall and winning a class championship
The Celica 1600GT wins the Japan Middle Touring Series and Manufacturer's Championship
Toyota enters the Celica 2000GT L/B Turbo in the Japanese Sports Prototypecar Championship in Fuji 1000 km race, winning the series championship
1974
The Oil Crisis causes a stop to all works-based motorsport activities in Japan and overseas
Toyota Motor Sales Co., Ltd. signs a contract with Team Toyota Andersson to continue overseas activities on its own
The Nova-tuned Toyota 2T-G modified engine sweeps through European (German, Italian, British, and European) Formula Three races (through 1978)
1975
Team Toyota Andersson begins activities as Toyota Team Europe (TTE)
Toyota enters the Corolla Levin in the WRC 1000 Lakes Rally, with TTE winning its first WRC championship (the first championship for a Japanese car in Europe)
1979
Toyota Racing Development, U.S.A. (TRD, U.S.A.) established in the U.S.
Following the establishment of the Japanese Formula Three Championship, Toyota's 2T-G modified engine wins the very first driver's championship
1981
Toyota U.S.A. enters the Celica in the IMSA*2 GTU (Under 2.5 L) class for the first time
Toyota engines entered in the Formula Three Macau Grand Prix for the first time, winning first and second places (the first Formula Three wins by Japanese cars)
Toyota decides to resume motorsport activities
1982
Toyota enters Tom's Dome Celica C with a Toyota 2T-G modified turbo engine (the first Group C*3 car made in Japan) in the World Endurance Championship (WEC) in Japan
The Celica 2000GT (RA63) debuts in and wins the WRC New Zealand
1983
Toyota engines monopolize the podium at the First Macau Grand Prix for international-standard Formula Three machines
Toyota wins the GTU class for the first time in the IMSA Fourth Riverside 6-Hours
Toyota enters the Southern California Off-Road Enthusiasts (SCORE) Pomona Race, winning both the manufacturer's & driver's championships
Toyota enters the Japanese Formula Three Championship, with the Toyota 2T-G modified engine winning the driver's championship
Toyota Tom's 83C wins the C-Jr. class at the WEC in Japan
1984
The Celica Twin-cam Turbo wins the first WRC Safari rally (establishing numerous records)
1985
Toyota enters the Corolla Levin in the Inter TEC (International Touring Car Endurance Race), winning the Group 1 championship
Toyota enters Tom's 85C-L in the WEC 24 Hours of Le Mans for the first time, placing 12th among the cars completing the race
The Celica Twin-cam Turbo wins WRC Safari Rally twice for the second year in a row
Toyota enters the Corolla Levin in the Japanese Touring Car Championship, winning the manufacturer's championship in JAF Group 1
Toyota enters the Corolla Levin in the Inter TEC, winning the Group 1 title
Toyota enters the Celica with a 4T-GT modified engine in the IMSA GTO class for the first time, winning the round 5 Laguna Seca race
1986
Toyota enters the Corolla FX in the Inter TEC, winning the Group 1 title for the second year in a row
The Celica Twin-cam Turbo achieves three consecutive wins at the WRC Safari Rally
Toyota enters the Japanese Formula Three Championship, with its 3S-G engine winning both the engine and driver's titles
Toyota enters the Japanese Touring Car Championship, winning the Group 1 manufacturer's championship
Toyota receives the Domestically Produced Engine Award (for the modified 3S-GT) at the WEC in Japan
1987
Toyota enters the Formula Three Macau Grand Prix, winning first and second places and receiving the Engine Supplier Award
Toyota enters the Toyota 87C in the Japanese Sports Prototypecar Championship in Fuji 1000 km race, scoring the first win for the 3S engine
Toyota becomes the first Japanese manufacturer to win the IMSA GTO class manufacturer's championship
Toyota enters the Japanese Formula Three Championship, with the 3S-G engine winning both the engine and driver's titles for the second year in a row
The Supra Turbo debuts in and wins the Japanese Touring Car Championship at Sugo
1988
Toyota wins the driver championship by achieving 12 consecutive wins since the start of the British Formula Three Championship
1989
Toyota 89C-V wins the Inter Challenge Fuji 1000 km for the first time
The Celica GT-Four (ST165) wins the WRC Rally Australia for the first time
1990
The Celica GT-Four (ST165) debuts in and wins the WRC Safari Rally
Toyota wins the first driver's championship at the WRC
The Eagle MK II debuts in and wins the IMSA GTP class
Toyota 90C-V debuts in and wins the JAF Grand Prix Japanese Sports Prototypecar championship in Fuji 500 km (JSPC)
1991
Toyota enters the Japanese Formula Three Championship, with the 3S-G engine winning both the engine and driver's titles
The Toyota 91C-V wins the JSPC in Fuji 500 Mile for the first time
1992
Toyota enters the TS010 in the Monza Round 1 of the Sportscar World Championship (SWC), winning for the first time
Toyota enters the TS010 in the SWC Round 3 of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, placing second overall (the first time a Japanese driver makes it to the podium)
The Celica GT-Four (ST185) wins the WRC Safari Rally for the first time
The TS010 wins the Group C manufacturer's and driver's titles at the JSPC in Fuji 1000 km, the first win in a Japanese race
Toyota wins the driver championship and, for the first time, the manufacturer championship in the IMSA GTP class
Toyota enters the Formula Three Macau Grand Prix, winning the race
Toyota enters the Celica GT-Four (ST185) in the WRC, winning the driver's championship
1993
Toyota acquires TTE, establishing Toyota Motorsport GmbH and appointing Ove Andersson its president
Toyota becomes the first Japanese manufacturer to win the WRC manufacturer's championship (along with the driver's championship title)
Toyota wins the IMSA GTP class in 24 Hours of Daytona for the first time
Toyota wins all circuits of the IMSA GTP class, winning all races and the driver's championship
Toyota enters and wins the International Formula Three League 1993 (Formula Three World Championship Race)
Toyota enters the Japanese Formula Three Championship, and its 3S-G engine wins three titles (engine, driver, and team)
1994
Toyota wins both the manufacturer's and driver's titles at the WRC for the second year in a row
Toyota enters the Le Mans with its 94C-LM, placing second and fourth overall
Toyota enters the Japanese Formula Three Championship, and its 3S-G engine won three titles (engine, driver, and team) for the second year in a row
Toyota enters the Corona in the first Japanese Touring Car Championship (JTCC), winning the driver and team championship
1995
In the first win ever by a Japanese driver, the Celica GT-Four wins the title at the Safari Rally for the fourth consecutive year and eighth year total
Toyota wins three titles (engine, driver, and team) at the Japanese Formula Three Championship, winning the championship for the third year in a row (marking seven consecutive wins and the largest number of wins (eight) within a year)
Toyota enters the Japanese GT Car Championship (JGTC) full scale and begins supplying engines for GT300
Toyota enters the Corona EXiV in the JTCC, winning six consecutive races since the opening
The Supra wins the JGTC Round 3 at Sendai Hi-land, GT500 class for the first time
The Formula Toyota Racing School (FTRS) established
Toyota enters the Corona EXiV in the Macau Grand Prix Gear Race, winning the overall title (the first win in 17 years for a Toyota car)
1996
Toyota enters the US CART*4 Indy Car Series for the first time
1997
Toyota wins the series championship (team and driver) in the JGTC GT500 class
Toyota makes a decision to participate in the WRC as the works.
Toyota wins three titles (engine, driver, and team) at the Japanese Formula Three Championship
1998
Toyota wins three titles (engine, driver, and team) at the Japanese Formula Three Championship for the second year in a row
Toyota enters and wins the Formula Three Macau Grand Prix
Toyota wins both the manufacturer's and driver's championships at the Asia Pacific Rally Championship (APRC), marking a win by a Japanese driver
Toyota enters the Chaser in the JTCC race, winning the driver and team series titles
1999
Toyota announces its plan to participate in the Formula One World Championship
Using only Japanese drivers, Toyota enters the Toyota TS020 in the Le Mans, placing second overall
Toyota wins three titles (engine, driver, and team) at the Japanese Formula Three Championship for the third year in a row
Toyota enters the Formula Three Macau Grand Prix, winning it for the second year in a row
Toyota becomes the third time WRC manufacturer's champion
Toyota becomes the team series champion in the JGTC GT500 class
2000
JGTC held its first overseas race in a special stage in Malaysia
Toyota wins the title at the 2000 JGT Special Stage Tokachi International Speed Way
Toyota wins three titles (engine, driver, and team) at the Japanese Formula Three Championship for the fourth year in a row
Toyota achieves its first CART victory at Round 6 of the CART World Series in Milwaukee
2001
Formula One car, TF101 unveiled at the Paul Ricard Circuit
Toyota announces 'Panasonic Toyota Racing' as the official name of the Toyota Formula one team
Toyota Drivers Academy (TDA) established
Toyota wins the driver's series championship in the JGTC GT500 class
2002
Toyota enters the Formula One World Championship for the first time, placing sixth in the opening Australian Grand Prix and scoring its first point finish in its debut Formula One race
Toyota wins both the driver's and manufacturer's titles at the CART World Series
Toyota wins the driver's series championship in the JGTC GT500 class for the second year in a row
2003
Toyota wins the Japanese race in the IRL*5 Round 3 of the Indy Japan 300 for the first time
Toyota becomes the first Japanese manufacturer to win the IRL Round 4 of the Indy 500
Toyota wins three titles (driver, manufacturer, and engine) in its first year of entry in the IRL Series
Toyota wins back three titles (engine, driver, and team) at the Japanese Formula Three Championship
Toyota wins two places (fifth and sixth) in the Formula One Round 12 of the German Grand Prix for the first time
2004
Toyota begins racing in the US NASCAR*6 Craftsman Truck Series
Toyota wins three titles (engine, driver, and team) at the Japanese Formula Three Championship for the second year in a row
2005
Toyota dominates the podium in the GT500 class at the Super GT (S-GT) Round 2 Sugo
Toyota wins the driver's championship in the S-GT GT500 class
Toyota stands on the podium (second place) for the first time at Formula One World Championship for its performance at the Malaysian Grand Prix in Round 2
TDA and FTRS training programs consolidated to establish the Toyota Young Drivers Program (TDP)
Toyota wins the Super GT Drivers Championship
Kamui Kobayashi, a TDP driver, enters the European Formula Renault, winning both the Italian and European Cup titles
Toyota wins its highest series points in Formula One, taking sixth and seventh positions among drivers and fourth among constructors
Toyota wins three titles (engine, driver, and team) at the Japanese Formula Three Championship for the third year in a row
2006
Toyota begins supplying engines to the Japanese Championship Formula NIPPON, and wins both the manufacturer's and driver's titles in its first year of entry
Toyota wins both the manufacturer's and driver's titles in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series
Toyota wins three titles (engine, driver, and team) at the Japanese Formula Three Championships for the fourth year in a row
The Lexus SC 430 debuts in and wins the GT500 class of the S-GT Round 1 Suzuka
Toyota wins both the driver's and team titles in the S-GT GT500 class
The Lexus GS 450h enters the Tokachi 24-Hour Endurance Race, completing the race as the first hybrid car entry
2007
Toyota wins the manufacturer's title in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series for the second year in a row
Toyota begins racing full scale in the NASCAR Nextel Cup and Busch Series
Toyota enters the Supra HV-R in the Tokachi 24-Hour Endurance Race, winning the overall title and securing the first win for a hybrid car
Toyota wins three titles (engine, driver, and team) at the Japanese Formula Three Championships for the fifth year in a row
Toyota enters its 1AZ-FE engine in the Formula Three Macau Grand Prix, winning the championship for the first time since 1999
Toyota wins both the manufacturer's and driver's titles at the Japanese Championship Formula NIPPON for the second year in a row
2008
Toyota wins the manufacturer's title in the NASCAR Nationwide (formerly Busch) Series
Toyota wins both the manufacturer's title in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series for the third year in a row as well as the driver's title
Toyota wins three titles (engine, driver, and team) with the 1AZ-FE engine at the Japanese Formula Three Championship for the sixth time
Toyota wins the manufacturer's and driver's titles at the Japanese Championship Formula NIPPON for the third year in a row
Toyota enters the Formula Three Macau Grand Prix, winning the title for the second year in a row and achieving the first win ever by a Japanese driver (Keisuke Kunimoto)
2009
Toyota wins the manufacturer's title in the NASCAR Nationwide Series for the second year in a row as well as the driver's title
Toyota wins the manufacturer's title in the NASCAR Camping World (formerly Craftsman) Truck Series for the fourth year in a row
Toyota stands on the podium (second place) for the first time in Japan in Round 15 of the Formula One World Championship in the Japanese Grand Prix
Toyota announces its withdrawal from Formula One
Kamui Kobayashi, a TDP driver, enters the European and Asian GP 2 Series, winning the Asia Series title
Toyota wins three titles (engine, driver, and team) at the Japanese Formula Three Championship for the seventh year in a row
Toyota wins both the driver's and team titles in the S-GT GT500 class
2010
Toyota wins the manufacturer's title in the NASCAR Nationwide Series for the third year in a row
Toyota wins the manufacturer's title in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series for the fifth year in a row as well as the driver's title
Toyota wins three titles (engine, driver, and team) at the Japanese Formula Three Championship for the eighth year in a row
Toyota takes all the titles at the Japanese Championship Formula NIPPON, winning the driver, team, and engine manufacturer titles
2011
The Camry wins the NASCAR (Nationwide Series and Sprint Cup Series) for the 100th time
Toyota wins three titles (engine, driver, and team) at the Japanese Formula Three Championship for the ninth year in a row
Toyota takes all the titles at the Japanese Championship Formula NIPPON, winning the driver, team, and engine manufacturer titles for the second year in a row
Toyota announces its plan to enter the WEC (FIA World Endurance Championship) with a hybrid vehicle, beginning with the 2012 season
*1
WRC is one of the world championship rallies organized by the Federation Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA). Racecars based on commercially available cars compete based on total time clocked on closed public roads.
*2
IMSA stands for International Motor Sports Association, a U.S. organization that sponsored popular sports car races in the 1970's and 1980's.
GTU and GTO are category names.
*3
Group C is a category established by the FIA that applies to prototype sports cars and does not specify production quantity or commercial availability.
*4
CART stands for Championship Auto Racing Teams, the name of a U.S. organization governing formula car racing.
*5
IRL stands for Indy Racing League, which split off from CART in 1996 and started as a racing series.
The Indy 500, which has continued since 1911, is also one of the IRL races.
*6
NASCAR stands for National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing and is the largest organization governing motorsports in the U.S.
Modified commercially available cars are used for racing, and the highest-ranked series are the highly venerated Sprint Cup Series, which uses 4-door sedans; the Nationwide Series; and the Camping World Truck Series, which uses pickup trucks. They used to be called the Nextel Cup Series, the Busch Series, and the Craftsman Truck Series, respectively.

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