Thousands of spectators witnessed the dynamic world debut of the new Toyota GR 86 coupe at the Goodwood Festival of Speed at the weekend (9-11 July).
The latest model to join the elite range of Toyota’s “GR” performance cars was seen in action in public for the first time on the famous hill climb course at Goodwood House in West Sussex. It took to the track in the company of its sister models, GR Yaris and the exclusive GR Supra Jarama Racetrack Edition, to give a flavour of the speed and handling quality delivered by direct development input from Toyota Gazoo Racing, Toyota’s international motorsports operation.
The Toyota GR 86 will be a successor to the multi-award-winning GT86. Due for launch during 2022, it will build on the qualities that distinguished the GT86, retaining a classic front engine/rear-wheel drive set-up. It will benefit from a larger, more powerful 2.4-litre horizontally opposed “boxer” four-cylinder engine and, while its dimensions will be near identical, it will gain an almost 50 per cent increase in torsional rigidity, key to its sharper handling and steering.
Toyota Gazoo Racing UK was also in action at Goodwood, with British Touring Car Championship stars Rory Butcher and Sam Smelt taking the wheel of the Speedworks Motorsport-prepared BTCC Corolla. Butcher’s turn of speed earned him a top-10 result in the festival’s timed shoot-out competition. There was also a festival debut for the BTCC’s Corolla hybrid development car, also prepared by Speedworks in their role as official testing partner for the new powertrain technology the championship is due to adopt from 2022.
On the festival’s Forest Stage, rare Toyota rally cars were in action, including Celica RA40 and GT-Four ST 185 models.