Toyota Racing has today unveiled the TS040 Hybrid vehicle and revised driver lineup, which will take it into the 2014 FIA World Endurance Championship and into a new era of hybrid motorsport. With the 520PS 3.7 liter petrol powerplant in addition to 480PS of four-wheel drive hybrid boost, the TS040 Hybrid introduced today at Paul Richard has a maximum power of 1000PS and symbolizes the most sophisticated hybrid technology in racing.
The move to a four-wheel drive hybrid sees TOYOTA return to a concept which has been part of its racing hybrid development since 2007, when the 4-wheel drive Supra HV-R became the first hybrid to win an endurance race, the Tokachi 24 Hours. The new TOYOTA HYBRID System – Racing powertrain has been developed specifically for the revised WEC technological regulations that put a particular focus on fuel economy. A 25 percent reduction in fuel usage unlike 2013 is required, with savings achieved through aerodynamics, driving style and powertrain efficiencies. A fuel flow meter will monitor fuel usage and penalties will be applied in the race if the three-lap average consumption exceeds defined limits.
Working together with official partner TOTAL, the engineers of TOYOTA Racing have found further performance and efficiencies through the use of specialist TOTAL lubricants. The more open, new regulations have allowed TOYOTA Racing to implement a major increase in hybrid power, with an AISIN AW motor-generator on the front axle added for complimenting the DENSO unit on the rear. Under deceleration, the motor-generators apply braking force in combination with conventional mechanical brakes to harvest energy, which is transferred via inverter (AISIN AW at the front, DENSO at the rear) to the NISSHINBO super-capacitor.
Yoshiaki Kinoshita, Team President: We are very much looking forward to our 3rd season in the FIA World Endurance Championship when we will fight to achieve our dream of winning Le Mans and the World Championship. As well as challenging new regulations which make endurance racing the most road-relevant discipline in top-level motorsport, we also have a new competitor.
Hisatake Murata, General Manager, Motor Sports Unit Development Division: The TOYOTA HYBRID System – Racing has been significantly updated because of the challenge of new regulations. The regulations need a big reduction in fuel consumption but, to remain competitive, we of course want to retain engine power; it is not a realistic option to reduce consumption by reducing power.
Pascal Vasselon, Technical Director: We started the initial simulations and studies immediately when the ACO announced the first elements of the regulations in mid-2012 and last season we devoted a lot of our available resources to developing the TS040 HYBRID. In terms of the chassis concept and aerodynamics, the TS040 HYBRID is a deep evolution of the TS030 HYBRID, taking into account the new dimensions as set by the regulations and implementing the lessons we learned in the last two years of WEC competition.
2014 FIA World Endurance Championship Calendar:
- 20th April: Six Hours of Silverstone (GB)
- 3rd May: Six Hours of Spa-Francorchamps (Bel)
- 14th June: Le Mans 24 Hours (Fra)
- 20th September: Six Hours of Circuit of the Americas (USA)
- 12th October: Six Hours of Fuji (Jpn)
- 2nd November: Six Hours of Shanghai (Chi)
- 15th November: Six Hours of Bahrain
- 30th November: Six Hours of Sao Paulo (Bra)
About TOYOTA Racing in the FIA World Endurance Championship:
TOYOTA first competed in the FIA WEC (World Endurance Championship) in 1983, marking the start of a long period of participation in endurance racing. TOYOTA vehicles have raced in 15 Le Mans 24 Hours races, achieving a best result of second place on four occasions (1992, 1994, 1999 & 2013). TOYOTA entered the revived WEC in 2012, as TOYOTA Racing, with its first hybrid LMP1 car, the TS030 HYBRID. That car competed for two seasons, winning five races. It was designed and built by TOYOTA Motorsport GmbH (TMG), where the race team is based. TMG is the former home of TOYOTA’s World Rally and Formula 1 works teams, and was responsible for design and operation of TOYOTA’s TS020 Le Mans car in 1998-99. TMG now combines motorsport participation with work as a high-performance engineering services provider to third party companies, as well as the TOYOTA family.