With Subaru’s racing and performance reputation built on rally championships, it seemed strange that the company would team up with Toyota to build a sports car for the street. The BRZ’s front engine, rear wheel drive configuration is incongruous with the dirt spitting image Subaru has cultivated, so the question loomed: when would a Subaru BRZ rally car show up? Surprisingly, Toyota beat Subaru to the punch with the first rally car built off of the Scion FR-S and Subaru BRZ platform.
Toyota Motorsport GmbH has announced a GT86 CS-R3 rally car that will be available through the customer motorsport program. To fit in with R3 specifications, the GT86 rally car will have a six speed sequential gearbox, a limited slip differential upgraded brakes and a more powerful engine.
Customers will be able to buy the Toyota GT86 CS-R3 rally car in 2015. The Toyota GT86 rally car will be eligible for all FIA sanctioned rallies including the world Rally Championship. Subaru has not announced a BRZ rally car, but even if it isn’t official, it doesn’t stretch the imagination to picture someone swapping a few body panels and competing with a Subaru BRZ rally car in the WRC.
Full GT86 CS-R3 Press Release:
11 November 2013
TOYOTA Motorsport GmbH (TMG) is proud to announce it will develop a GT86 R3 rally car as part of its customer motorsport programme.
The rear-wheel drive sports car will be converted to R3 specification and made available to private competitors, with delivery expected for the 2015 season.
The car, which will be known as the TMG GT86 CS-R3, will be built according to R3 regulations, meaning it will have a six-speed sequential gearbox, limited slip differential, modified engine, adapted brakes and other upgrades.
Drawing on the experience of developing the TMG GT86 CS-V3 race car for the Nürburgring-based VLN series, TMG engineers will modify the base car to the maximum level permitted within the regulations.
The TMG GT86 CS-R3 is targeted at private customers and is eligible for all FIA-sanctioned rallies, up to and including the World Rally Championship. Full specifications and pricing will be announced in the coming months.
Today’s announcement strengthens TMG’s commitment to customer motorsport and rallying, both of which represent key aspects of its long-term business strategy.
With a Yaris R1A already launched plus the ongoing development of a Global Race Engine, TMG is expanding and strengthening its knowledge of rallying and drawing on its proud history in the sport.
TMG’s very existence is founded on rally, having begun life in Cologne in 1979 as Toyota Team Europe (TTE). Under Ove Andersson, the company went on to win four drivers’ and three manufacturers’ World Championships.
Nico Ehlert, Principal Engineer Customer Motorsport: “Rallying is in our blood at TMG so it is very exciting to announce that we will be expanding our rally operations. The GT86 CS-R3 promises to be a thrilling car on the rally stages; with rear-wheel drive we can expect some dramatic action which is sure to be entertaining for drivers and fans alike. Through our experience with the TMG GT86 Cup and the TMG GT86 CS-V3 race car we have built a solid infrastructure for customer motorsport over the past few years. We will draw on this to deliver a reliable, safe and high-performance car, plus all the required technical support, for our customers. We expect demand to be high so we are looking forward to seeing a lot of GT86 CS-R3 rally cars in action from the beginning of the 2015 season.”
Racing by TMG: The customer racing arm of TOYOTA Motorsport GmbH (TMG) is identified by the “racing by TMG” logo, which encompasses race and rally projects designed exclusively for private participants. TMG returned to the world of customer motorsport in 2012 with the launch of the Yaris R1 entry-level rally car, while the same year saw the introduction of the TMG Customer Sport V3 (CS-V3) race car. That car won its class in the Nürburgring 24 Hours and forms the basis of the expanding TMG GT86 Cup, run within the Nürburgring-based VLN series.
Source: Toyota Motorsports Group.