IRL: CHAMPCAR/CART: Toyota to supply one engine in 2003

TORRANCE, Calif. (Sept. 27, 2001) - Toyota Motor Corporation and Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., today announced that, beginning in 2003, Toyota will only supply a 3.5-liter, normally aspirated V8 engine for top-tier, open-wheel racing in the United...

TORRANCE, Calif. (Sept. 27, 2001) - Toyota Motor Corporation and Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., today announced that, beginning in 2003, Toyota will only supply a 3.5-liter, normally aspirated V8 engine for top-tier, open-wheel racing in the United States. The powerplant will meet Indy Racing League specifications, which were announced earlier this year.

Toyota has been an engine supplier in the CART series since 1996 with the current spec 2.65-liter, turbo-charged engine. Discussions regarding CART's future engine plans have been ongoing for more than a year; however, no final decision has been reached by CART.

"Our timetable for business planning reached a critical point, and we simply couldn't wait any longer - Toyota has made its decision," said J. Davis Illingworth, Jr., Toyota senior vice president. "From a financial perspective, it is not prudent for Toyota to supply two different engine specs for U.S.-based, open-wheel racing while also in the early stages of a Formula One program internationally.

"As for future engine specs, we are certain CART will decide what is best for its shareholders and participants. If CART adopts the same engine specifications as the IRL, and it makes good business sense from both a financial and marketing standpoint, Toyota would consider again participating in the series."

For 2002, Toyota will compete in the CART FedEx Championship Series with all of its current contracts in place, and once again make an all-out effort to win the Driver's and Manufacturer's Championships.

-Toyota Motorsports

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