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Toyota and Lexus to get a performance sub brand

By FaezClutchless on 25 Jun 2012

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Toyota Motorsport GmbH (TMG) has been responsible for many of Toyota's motorsport campaigns which includes Formula 1, World Rally Championships and the 24 Hours Le Mans competition. And ever since Toyota pulled out of Formula 1 in 2009, the company has been busy with several projects; mainly with the development of the TS030 Hybrid Le Mans race cars that participated in the 24 Hours Le Mans recently.

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Toyota Team Europe Group A Toyota Celica GT4 ST185

A little history about the company before we continue with the story. Toyota Motorsport GmbH started in the 1970s as Toyota Team Europe (TTE). The company was responsible for providing technical support for rally driver, Ove Andersson, who was driving a Celica at that time. They also developed the first Japanese car to win the WRC. In 1993, TTE changed their name to what it is today and they got involved in other racing competitions as well such as the Le Mans and Formula 1.

Toyota Motorsport GmbH, which is located in Cologne, Germany is run by Yoshiaki Kinoshita who recently mentioned that he wants TMG to become Toyota’s version of AMG. Kinoshita also mentioned that after the company stopped its involvement in Formula One, they planned to do several things. And one of them is to become an AMG-type company.

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Toyota TS020 GT-ONE

Toyota Motorsport GmbH is currently working on that. How feasible it will be, that Kinoshita could not tell at the moment but he did stated that the company is in a very good position for it.

In recent months, the company has been testing a Lexus LS which is powered by a twin turbocharged V8 engine that churns out around 650bhp. Although it is a one-off project for testing reasons, the car could hint at a high performance version of the LS which could take on rivals such as the Mercedes Benz S63 AMG.

Additionally, the tuned Lexus LS is also rumoured to feature an aggressive looking bodykit, wider front and rear tracks and a sports-tuned suspension. The car will make its debut at this year’s Essen Motor Show in September.

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Toyota TS030 Le Mans Hybrid

TMG will not only focus on Lexus cars but also on Toyotas but only for the high-end models. This would mean that we would not get to see a TMG tuned Toyota 86 or any of the other entry level models.

A final decision of the future of TMG will only be decided in the later part of this year and there are also some hurdles that TMG is facing. One of them is to develop transmissions that are able to face tough emissions regulations. And another is whether to adopt a new TMG branding or just stick with the TRD brand that Toyota has used for some of their performance orientated cars in the past.

Photo credit: Wikipedia and Auto Blog

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Written by FaezClutchless
Some say that his blood is actually RON98 petrol and some say that his right foot weighs over 20kg. But all that we know about Faez is that he loves to drive and is a JDM enthusiast.

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