Video: Toyota’s president needs no introduction to rally cars

To be more skilled than your boss always helps, because then you can make up plenty of excuses to said boss, cover it all in big words and expert sounding phrases and he’ll just tell you to shut the hell up and then he’ll leave you alone. If your boss is only marginally good at mechanics or engineering and if his driving experience mainly consists of driving his executive sedan from home to work and vice versa, you can probably sell him anything you want, as long as it’s packaged in a way that is above his level of knowledge or understanding. But you cannot do any of that to Toyota’s main guy, Akio Toyoda, no sir. This president, I am sorry, this President probably knows a lot more about engineering and driving than many of those pretending to be in full control of their companies. You cannot sell complex phrases to this guy, instead he will sell them to you, after he’s done putting Yaris WRC through its paces. Many CEOs and other CXXs get a chance to drive race and rally cars at some points, some suck some are good, but this guy actually competes in actual events, so think twice before you decide to talk about anything with Mr Toyoda. Of course, I also get the impression he is super nice and I am also pretty sure it is extremely helpful to have a very experienced and enthusiastic person at the helm. With Mr Toyoda I think there was no question of “if”, just “when” in regards to Toyota’s WRC return.

Before you hop over to see Mr Akio test Yaris WRC, take a look at some technical details of Toyota’s current WRC car. When is the next Yaris generation due? Right about 2017? Sooner? Later?

Anyway, tech details and then Akio Toyoda and Yaris WRC.


Type Steel body shell
Brakes 300mm discs (gravel)355mm discs (Tarmac)
Wheels 7 x 15in (gravel)8 x 18in (Tarmac)
Tyres Michelin
Length (mm) 3,910
Width (mm) 1,820
Engine type Four-cylinder in-line
Capacity 1.6-litre
Direct injection pressure Up to 200bar
Fuel Petrol
Max. turbo pressure 2.5bar
Air restrictor 33mm
Max. power 300bhp @ 6,000rpm (approx..)
Max. torque 420Nm
Max. revs 8,500
Transmission Six-speed sequential
Clutch ZF Sachs




1973    Manufacturers’ Championship: 10th (1 win)
Toyota’s first victory, Walter Boyce/Doug Woods driving a Corolla TE20 on the Press On Regardless Rally (United States)

1974    Manufacturers’ Championship: 4th
Future World Champion Björn Waldegaard makes his Toyota debut

1975    Manufacturers’ Championship: 7th (1 win)
First victory for TTE with Hannu Mikkola/Atso Aho driving a Corolla Levin in the 1000 Lakes Rally (Finland)

1976    Manufacturers’ Championship: 6th

1977    Manufacturers’ Championship: 3rd

1978    Manufacturers’ Championship: 6th

1979    Manufacturers’ Championship: 5th

1980    Manufacturers’ Championship: 7th

1981    Manufacturers’ Championship: 8th

1982    Manufacturers’ Championship: 5th (1 win)
TMG founder Ove Andersson drives in WRC for the last time, driving a Celica 2000GT

1983    Manufacturers’ Championship: 6th (1 win)

1984    Manufacturers’ Championship: 4th (1 win)
First Safari Rally (Kenya) victory with Björn Waldegaard/Hans Thorzelius driving a Celica Twin-cam Turbo (TA64)

1985    Manufacturers’ Championship: 5th (2 wins)

1986    Manufacturers’ Championship: 6th (2 wins)
Toyota’s third successive Safari Rally win, with Björn Waldegaard/Fred Gallagher driving a Celica Twin-cam Turbo (TA64)

1987    Manufacturers’ Championship: 7th

1988    Manufacturers’ Championship: 5th
Introduction of the Celica GT Four, which would go on to win 29 WRC rallies and six World Championships (two manufacturers’ and four drivers’) in its ST165, ST185 and ST205 guises

1989    Manufacturers’ Championship: 2nd (1 win)
Carlos Sainz makes his Toyota debut, competing in seven rallies and finishing on the podium in three

1990    Manufacturers’ Championship: 2nd (5 wins)
Carlos Sainz becomes Toyota’s first drivers’ World Champion, at the wheel of a Celica GT-Four (ST165)

1991    Manufacturers’ Championship: 2nd (6 wins)
Toyota’s’ first victory in the legendary Monte Carlo Rally

1992    Manufacturers’ Championship: 2nd (5 wins)

1993    Manufacturers’ Championship: 1st (7 wins)
Toyota becomes the first Japanese company to win the World Rally Championship

1994    Manufacturers’ Championship: 1st (5 wins)
Toyota achieves a second hat-trick of Safari Rally wins, with Ian Duncan driving a Celica Turbo WRC

1995    Manufacturers’ Championship: 3rd, disqualified (1 win)

1998    Manufacturers’ Championship: 2nd (3 wins)
After a two-season absence, Toyota wins on its return at the first attempt, in the Monte Carlo Rally, thanks to Carlos Sainz/Luis Moya in a Corolla WRC

1999    Manufacturers’ Championship: 1st (1 win)
Toyota’s third manufacturers’ World Championship; only two companies have won more in WRC history