Toyota TS040 Hybrid revealed
With the new season of motor racing beginning, in the case of the 2014 FIA World Endurance Championship, a new crop of cars are appearing in the form of the new Porsche 919 Hybrid, the revised Audi R18 E-Tron Quattro and now Toyota's new TS040 Hybrid has joined the ranks.
The Toyota TS040 Hybrid details
The new racer is based on the TS030 Hybrid it replaces, redesigned to meet the latest regulations established by the FIA and ACO for the World Endurance Championship and it's flagship race, the 24 Hours of Le Mans. In accordance with the new regulations, the model is two inches narrower than it's predecessor and also incorporates a new hybrid powertrain.
The previous 3.4 litre V8 has been replaced by a larger 3.7 litre V8 that is capable of developing 513 brake horse power. This new engine is coupled with an Aisin AW electric motor at the front, a Denso electric motor at the rear and a Narimbo super capacitor that combine to kick out an extra 473 brake horse power, giving the combined system an output of just under 1,000 brake horse power while consuming 25% less fuel than last year's car. Due to the high output of the vehicle, Toyota have equipped the racer with all wheel drive to help channel the power to the road.
The model's hardware has been stuffed inside a new chassis and body which has been wind tunnel testes to lower drag and increase both grip and downforce. This will be an important decision since the teams are now required to wear tyres that are 50mm narrower.
The Toyota TS040 Hybrid and the FIA WEC
Two TS040s will be fielded in the WEC this season, with Alex Wurz, Stéphane Sarrazin and Kazuki Nakajima sharing car No. 7 and Anthony Davidson, Nicolas Lapierre and Sébastien Buemi in car No. 8. Following 12 days of testing across Europe, the TS040 starts a two-day test session at Paul Ricard today before making its race debut at the Six Hours of Silverstone in the UK on April 20. From there, the circus heads to Spa, Le Mans, Austin, Fuji, Shanghai, Bahrain and Sao Paulo.
Comments from Toyota
Toyota team president, Yoshiaki Kinoshita, commented, “As a team we learnt a lot in our first two seasons in WEC and all this know-how has gone into our new TS040 Hybrid, which is the most technologically-advanced Toyota ever to compete on the track. We consider it very important that our racing program contributes to Toyota’s wider activities and I am very proud that data, knowledge and technology pass regularly from our racing program to our R&D colleagues, who are working to make great road cars of the future.”