Toyota Motor Corporation Chairman Akio Toyoda has revealed for the first time a new hydrogen-engine vehicle prototype, the GR H2 Racing Concept.
Developed with future competition in its sights, the prototype was unveiled today at a press conference hosted by Automobile Club de l’Ouest (ACO), organiser of the Le Mans 24 Hours. It was spurred by the ACO’s recent announcement that it would allow hydrogen-engine vehicles to compete – in addition to fuel cell electric vehicles – in a hydrogen category.
Speaking at the press conference, Toyoda congratulated the ACO on the centenary of the Le Mans 24 Hours and expressed his gratitude for the opportunity the endurance race provides to hone car performance.
Toyota has been competing with a hydrogen-engine Corolla race car in Japan’s Super Taikyu endurance racing series since 2021; the same car also took part in an endurance race in Thailand in December 2022. It has used this involvement to hone its technologies in the harsh environment of motorsport and, with like-minded partners within and outside the automotive industry, has been accelerating its efforts around the production, transportation and use of hydrogen to progress towards realising a carbon-neutral society. Toyota intends to further advance its efforts to make ever-better cars bred through motorsports and achieve a carbon-neutral society, and it looks forward to taking on the challenge of a new generation of Le Mans 24 Hours races.
The GR H2 Racing Concept measures 5,100mm long and 2.050mm wide. Its powertrain features a hydrogen engine and hybrid system. It is on public display in the ACO’s H2 Village during this weekend’s race meeting (9-11 June).
Comments by Toyota Chairman Akio Toyoda
“My congratulations to the ACO, and all involved, on the 100th anniversary of Le Mans. Le Mans is a place where we not only compete in one of the world’s most celebrated races but where we can also push the boundaries of technology – a place where we can realise the future. We are grateful to the ACO and Le Mans for providing this unique opportunity to share our efforts with the world.
“My goal is to achieve carbon neutrality in motorsports without sacrificing anything in terms of performance or excitement. We look forward to our new GR H2 race car in view of the new Le Mans H2 class in the future. The sound, the torque, the dynamics, it’s all there. Not only are we re-imagining the race car, we’re doing it with zero emissions. Here’s to the next 100 years of chequered flags.”
Comments by ACO President Pierre Fillon
“Today will be a milestone in the history of the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the FIA World Endurance Championship: a manufacturer, and which manufacturer, the number one in the world, has just presented its Hydrogen Endurance project.
“100 years ago, the ACO created the 24 Hours of Le Mans, a real technological laboratory for a car in full development. Today, mobility is undergoing a revolution, that of the energy transition and the 24 hours of Le Mans participates in the search for sustainable technologies.
“Since 2018, the ACO, with MissionH24 and GreenGT, has been promoting hydrogen, a safe and efficient energy carrier. Today is a new crucial step for the creation of the Hydrogen category of the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Once again, Endurance demonstrates its commitment to sustainable mobility, in line with automotive players. I would like to salute this challenge from Toyota, the vision of these men and women. Toyoda-san, by officially presenting this Hydrogen project today, you have left your mark on the history of the 24 Hours of Le Mans.”