New Toyota 86 GT300 car set for 2022 SUPER GT debut

A new GT300 model based on the new-shape Toyota 86 that will go on sale later this year is set to join the SUPER GT grid in 2022.

New Toyota 86 GT300 car set for 2022 SUPER GT debut

The new machine will be built by long-time GT300 constructor apr, which currently operates a pair of Toyota Prius PHV GR Sports built to the same homegrown ruleset (known until this year as JAF GT300).

It will bear a strong resemblance to the new Subaru BRZ GT300 car that was introduced for the start of this season, as the BRZ road car shares a platform with the 86.

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Apr plans to continue to operate one Prius, the #31 machine that is equipped with a hybrid system, in 2022 alongside one of its new self-built 86s, which will replace the non-hybrid #30 Prius currently driven by Manabu Orido and Hiroaki Nagai (pictured below).

“[The #30 car] will be the 86 next year,” apr team boss and owner Hiroto Kaneso revealed to Motorsport.com. “We are building it now, the new type.

“[The #31 car] will continue as the Prius next year, and we are developing a stronger hybrid system for it. I think the #31 will always remain a Prius.”

Motorsport.tv will show the upcoming SUPER GT Autopolis round live. Available worldwide except Japan. Click here for more information.

 

Asked whether the team planned to supply the new 86 to other teams in the GT300 class next year, Kaneso replied: “Yes. There will be two or three cars [in total]. Three is the maximum, we can’t build more. [The #30 car] plus one or two others.”

Kaneso would not be drawn on which other teams may use the 86 when asked by Motorsport.com, however.

Apr, previously known as A’PEX Racing, has a long history of building Toyota cars in the GT300 class of SUPER GT/JGTC, beginning with the MR2 that won the championship in 1999 with Morio Nitta as part of a joint collaboration with Tsuchiya Engineering.

Further titles for apr-run cars followed in 2002 (with ARTA), 2005 (with Team Reckless) and 2007, all using the W30-generation MR-S.

 

After a number of seasons campaigning the Corolla Axio, apr switched to the mid-engined Prius for the 2012 season, expanding to a second car under its own banner in 2016.

A rule change that effectively outlawed the mid-engined Prius prompted apr to build an all-new front-engined version that entered service in 2019.

However, the new model has failed to match the competitiveness of its predecessor, having scored only a single top-five finish last year with Koki Saga and Yuhki Nakayama in the hybrid-powered #31 car.

Orido and Nagai have taken the best result for a Prius so far in 2021 with a sixth-place finish in the fourth round of the season at Suzuka last month.

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