Toyota rules out World Endurance Championship hiatus

Toyota expects to remain in the World Endurance Championship in 2019/20 if it commits to building a new LMP1 car for the regulations to be introduced the following season

Toyota rules out World Endurance Championship hiatus

The Japanese manufacturer is currently only committed to the WEC to the end of the 2018/19 superseason, but insists it would be natural to remain for the first campaign run to the winter-series format in 2019/20 should it make a long-term commitment to the championship.

Toyota Motorsport GmbH technical director Pascal Vasselon told Autosport: "We are interested in the 2020 regulations, which under the current discussions means GT Prototype cars.

"At the moment we don't know enough about these regulations to really commit, but we are interested.

"If our interest is confirmed when the regulations are known, naturally we will be there [in 2019/20]."

Vasselon explained that it would not make sense to take a season off.

"Either we are interested in 2020 and we bridge the gap, or we are not and then maybe we stop," he said.

Vasselon dismissed speculation that the new rules could be delayed until 2021/22.

"At the moment the target is 2020 and we should not do anything to delay it," he said.

"It should remain 2020, which is why the schedule starts to be a bit tight but still workable."

The rulemakers plan to announce the 2020/21 regulations during the week of the Le Mans 24 Hours this June.

Toyota revealed a Gazoo Racing concept car (pictured above and below) at last month's Tokyo motor show that hinted at how a GTP car might look.

The GR Super Sport Concept is largely based on components from the TS050 HYBRID and is being used to promote its new GR performance sub-brand.

Toyota believes it is important that manufacturers should be allowed to continue to develop advanced technologies in LMP1.

shares
comments
Toyota wants different technology levels in WEC's LMP1 from 2020/21

Previous article

Toyota wants different technology levels in WEC's LMP1 from 2020/21

Next article

Davidson seeks post-Le Mans racing after Alonso took Toyota drive

Davidson seeks post-Le Mans racing after Alonso took Toyota drive
Load comments
How Alpine's stunted Portimao charge helped Toyota to keep clear Plus

How Alpine's stunted Portimao charge helped Toyota to keep clear

Despite going stride for stride for pace at Portimao, Alpine’s grandfathered LMP1 couldn’t convert pole position into a sustained victory fight against Toyota. And due to rules and car limitations that are set in stone, the French manufacturer will be searching for solutions in its own battle of endurance

WEC
Jun 14, 2021
Toyota hits the ton — charting 100 world championship sportscar starts Plus

Toyota hits the ton — charting 100 world championship sportscar starts

The Japanese manufacturer is celebrating its 100th world championship prototype start in this weekend's Portimao 8 Hours round of the World Endurance Championship. Here are the major milestones on the road to three figures since the earliest low-key days of its entry into the Group C arena nearly 40 years ago

WEC
Jun 12, 2021
The philosophical problems the WEC's new Hypercar class is already facing Plus

The philosophical problems the WEC's new Hypercar class is already facing

OPINION: Most of the column inches after the World Endurance Championship's opener were centred around the relative pace of the Hypercar class and the LMP2s, but there's another question that needs addressing in order for the new division to have a successful future

WEC
May 7, 2021
How stumbling Toyota drew first blood in the WEC's new era Plus

How stumbling Toyota drew first blood in the WEC's new era

Amid concerns that the new Hypercar class would be upstaged on debut by the spec LMP2 machines at Spa, Toyota delivered the pole and victory that the vast majority of observers expected. But neither car had a clean run, which gave the grandfathered Alpine LMP1 an unexpected shot at glory

WEC
May 4, 2021
Seven things to watch in the 2021 World Endurance Championship Plus

Seven things to watch in the 2021 World Endurance Championship

Beyond the slender grid of headline-grabbing hypercars, there are numerous subplots and changes to look out for in the new season of the WEC, which gets underway at Spa this weekend. Here's the seven key things you need to know about

WEC
Apr 30, 2021
What to expect from sportscar racing's bold new Hypercar era Plus

What to expect from sportscar racing's bold new Hypercar era

A slim field of three cars will be entered in the Hypercar class for the first round of the World Endurance Championship's post-LMP1 age. But there are plenty of reasons for optimism with the new wave of manufacturer entries and competing class philosophies just around the corner

WEC
Apr 29, 2021
How Aston Martin Racing scaled new heights in the Prodrive era Plus

How Aston Martin Racing scaled new heights in the Prodrive era

The 2021 World Endurance Championship kicks off at Spa this weekend, but for the first time since its 2012 inception there will be no works Aston Martins in the GTE-Pro class. As its new era in Formula 1 begins, Aston leaves behind a legacy of success courtesy of its Prodrive-run factory programme that was a hit from the word go in 2005

WEC
Apr 27, 2021
How 'Brilliant' Bob Wollek lived up to his nickname Plus

How 'Brilliant' Bob Wollek lived up to his nickname

Sportscar racing lost one of it's greatest talents 20 years ago today when Bob Wollek was knocked from his bicycle prior to the Sebring 12 Hours. The enigmatic Frenchman never won the Le Mans 24 Hours, but many still remember today why 'Brilliant Bob' became a legend

WEC
Mar 16, 2021