‘Toyota’s commitment to WRC is long-term,’ says chairman

Japanese brand recently announced dedicated development centre close to Finnish team workshop.

Toyota chairman Akio Toyoda has reiterated the Japanese marque's long-term commitment to the World Rally Championship (WRC).

Confirmed:

  • Toyota returned to WRC in 2017 after a 17-year hiatus
  • Japanese brand is one of three manufacturers currently operating in the series, alongside Hyundai and Ford via its partnership with M-Sport
  • Toyota's dedication to the series was emphasised at Rally Finland, where manufacturer announced plans to establish a new WRC development centre close to its team workshop in Jyvaskyla

Context: Toyota's public commitment to WRC is set against a backdrop of regulatory uncertainties in the series, with potential changes being considered with electric vehicles and hydrogen or synthetic fuels.

Comment: Toyoda told Autosport: “This is not just a marketing decision. After our 17-year absence, my desire to return to the WRC was based on two main reasons: to utilise the experience to produce better vehicles and for the development of our human resources. If we lose sight of these goals, we lose our company's essence. Hence, our commitment to the WRC is long-term.”

Coming next: With Toyota's renewed dedication to the WRC, it remains to be seen how this will influence the broader rally community, potential regulations, and if other manufacturers will heed Toyoda's call for increased competition.

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