Oh Toyota! So many great cars and exceptional drivers, few controversies and a desire to embrace new challenges and give way to Bernie Ecclestone’s attempts to lure them to Formula 1. We all know how this particular challenge unfolded – Toyota’s Formula 1 successes can be somewhat compared to successes of another major car brand, BMW. They were both, more or less, utter failures. But that was Formula 1. In rallying, Toyota had plenty of results and bright moments, but no story is complete without the not so bright and even outright dark moments. And Toyota had few of those as well.
From infamous turbo controversy (which is still hard to fully believe on either side – perhaps conspiracy theorists are right when they say this was orchestrated to “persuade” Toyota to redirect their money to Formula 1) to the bitter (with bloody capital B) disappointment for Carlos Sainz, when he lost his third title after Corolla’s engine committed suicide few hundred meters away from the finish of last stage of the season.
Toyota had great cars – from Celicas of all generations to Corolla (both ugly and damn sexy at the same time), and drivers such as Carlos Sainz, Juha Kankkunen and Didier Auriol. Team was led by Ove Andersson, and the rest is, well, history. With high hopes of seeing famous Japanese brand return to WRC in near future, I found this video to be pretty nice overview of their former glory.