The GT86 CS-R3 rally car will make its public debut at ADAC Rallye Deutschland, the ninth round of the 2014 FIA World Rally Championship, TOYOTA Motorsport GmbH (TMG) can confirm.
TMG has chosen to return to its rallying roots with a rear-wheel-drive car to entertain drivers and fans alike, following in the wheel tracks of cars such as the spectacular Celica Twin Cam Turbo (TA64), a rally winner in the 1980s.
That decision perfectly reflects a global TOYOTA theme of ‘fun to drive, again’ whilst following the company’s enthusiasm for encouraging participation through grassroots motorsport initiatives.
After almost a year of development, TMG will put the CS-R3 through its paces as a zero car on Rallye Deutschland, which takes place around Trier on 21-24 August. The car is not competing but has an important role testing each stage to ensure safety.
Former female world champion Isolde Holderied will drive the CS-R3. One of her main tasks will be to evaluate the car, which is currently a prototype, in order to refine the design prior to confirmation of the final specifications, a necessary step before R3 homologation is completed.
The CS-R3 will be offered for sale to private customers and TOYOTA dealerships, providing a cost-effective way to enjoy the thrills of competitive rallying, from local events up to and including the WRC.
It conforms to the FIA’s R3 regulation, which allows modification of its two-litre boxer engine. Changes to the software and hardware, such as cam lift and compression ratio, are part of an extensive development programme and the final car is targeted to deliver 240-250hp.
Throughout the development process, TMG has focused on reducing weight whilst delivering safety, reliability and fun.
A sequential shift six-speed transmission and limited slip rear differential give a feeling of true high performance while an FIA-homologated safety cage has been designed and calculated, allowing weight optimisation.
TMG has also sourced tailor-made wiring looms and motorsport engine ECUs, while the car will feature market-leading tarmac and gravel suspension kits, including specifically-designed arms.
The CS-R3 has tested already on various surfaces to prepare for its Rallye Deutschland participation, during which it will complete 274km over three days and 18 stages.
It will be available to customers in the first quarter of 2015 in kit form and TMG expects to offer a price comparable with other R3 models. Pricing will be announced after confirmation of the final specifications.
Nico Ehlert, Principal Engineer Customer Motorsport: “This is exciting news for TMG and, I hope, for rallying in general. To see a new rear-wheel-drive rally car hitting the stage for the first time should be a real spectacle. It’s important to say that the GT86 CS-R3 which Isolde will drive is not the finished article; we need the data from Rallye Deutschland to finalise our development programme. Therefore it represents a significant step in the GT86 CS-R3 story and gives a clear indication to our future customers that this project is progressing quickly. We are testing our prototype on a very public stage, the FIA World Rally Championship, which shows how confident we are in this project. Interest in this car has already exceeded our expectations and we are looking forward to hearing customer and fan feedback in Trier.”