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Wednesday, July 10, 2024

Lexus Set to Unveil Toyota GR GT3 Under Its Badge

NEW BEAST - The automotive world is buzzing with anticipation as Lexus prepares to introduce a groundbreaking new supercar, inspired by the Toyota GT3 GR Concept that made waves at the 2022 Tokyo Auto Salon. This exciting development represents a spiritual successor to the legendary V10-powered LFA supercar and promises to compete fiercely with high-performance vehicles like the Aston Martin Vantage, Lamborghini Huracán, and the hybrid Ferrari 296 GTB.
The Toyota GT3 GR Concept first seen at the 2022 Tokyo Auto Salon will become the Lexus LFR. (Picture from: MotorSports)
Initially showcased as an extreme concept, the Toyota GT3 GR has evolved into a fully-fledged prototype. Recently, it was spotted at the iconic Spa-Francorchamps circuit in Belgium, demonstrating its potential with a powerful and distinctive exhaust note. Gazoo Racing, Toyota's esteemed motorsport division, is diligently working to ensure this supercar is ready for elite competitions by 2026, including the prestigious 24 Hours of Le Mans.
The spiritual successor to the legendary LFA, named the LFR, is being developed alongside Toyota's GT3 GR racing program. (Picture from: CarBuzz)
A crucial aspect of FIA homologation rules for GT3 race cars is the requirement that they share their basic body design with a road-going version. This stipulation ensures that by 2026, a slightly less aggressive, road-legal version of the GT3 GR will be available in showrooms.  
The upcoming Lexus LFR supercar boasts a lightweight monocoque, drawing inspiration from the Toyota GT3 GR racer. (Picture from: Drive.com.au)
Toyota's commitment to "commercializing motorsport cars rather than simply adapting production vehicles for use in motorsports" aligns with this approach, as evidenced by the rally-tuned GR Yaris hot hatchback.
The upcoming Lexus LFR supercar boasts a twin-turbo V8 hybrid and is intended to be the successor to the Lexus LFA. (Picture from: Drive.com.au)
Lexus has a rich heritage of producing big-engined sports cars, such as the LFA, LC 500, IS-F, and RC-F. It is highly likely that the upcoming road-going GT3 GR will proudly bear the Lexus badge, continuing this legacy. Additionally, Toyota's recent collaboration with Mazda and Subaru to "revolutionize" the internal combustion engine underscores the importance of ICE technology, even as the automotive industry increasingly shifts towards electric vehicles.
Toyota has been vocal about the benefits of ongoing ICE research for sports cars. The company's significant investments in developing sustainable fuels, including a partnership with Yamaha to create a hydrogen-compatible 5.0-liter V8 engine, highlight this commitment. This engine might also feature in the upcoming Lexus supercar, further showcasing Toyota's innovative approach.
The Lexus Electrified Sport concept. (Picture from: Drive.com.au)
Expected to launch in 2026, the new Lexus supercar will likely feature a newly developed twin-turbocharged 5.0-liter V8 engine, generating an impressive 710 horsepower. Coupled with a next-generation plug-in hybrid system, the car's combined output is anticipated to reach a staggering 940 horsepower. This combination promises exhilarating performance and aligns with Toyota's multi-pathway strategy, which includes gasoline hybrids, plug-in hybrids, hydrogen-powered vehicles, and fully electric cars.
The Lexus Electrified Sport concept. (Picture from: Drive.com.au)
Confirming these ambitious plans, Toyota has announced that the new GT3 racer will carry Lexus badges. The road-going version, seen as a successor to the iconic Lexus LFA V10 supercar, is expected to debut in 2026. Rob Leupen, head of Toyota's World Endurance Championship team, affirmed that the GR GT3 concept will race in Europe starting in 2026, with a road car version following closely.
The Lexus LFA. (Picture from: Drive.com.au)
Japanese media have speculated that the new supercar, likely to be named the Lexus LFR, will utilize hybrid V8 power. Recent reports suggest it will combine a 4.0-liter twin-turbocharged V8 with an electric motor, delivering over 900 metric horsepower. The vehicle is expected to incorporate advanced materials such as aluminum and carbon fiber, enhancing its competitiveness in GT3 racing.
The Lexus LFA. (Picture from: Drive.com.au)
The Lexus LFR has already been seen testing at the Toyota-owned Fuji Speedway circuit in Japan, further indicating its readiness for the racetrack. As excitement builds, more details about this highly anticipated supercar will emerge in the coming months, setting the stage for its showroom debut.
As the automotive industry continues to evolve, Lexus is poised to make a significant impact with its innovative and powerful new supercar. The combination of cutting-edge technology, sustainable powertrain options, and a legacy of high-performance engineering ensures that this vehicle will capture the imagination of enthusiasts and set new benchmarks in the world of supercars. *** [EKA | FROM VARIOUS SOURCES | CARSALES.COM.AU | DRIVE.COM.AU | FORBES | MOTORSPORTS | CARBUZZ ]
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