The 86th running of the Le Mans 24 Hours next week provides the perfect opportunity for Toyota to prepare a trio of one-off versions of its own famous “86”, the GT86 coupe. Each car sports a different livery celebrating some of Toyota’s great Le Mans cars of the past. And what better date for the reveal than today, the eighth day of the six month.
Toyota GB challenged themselves to design the cars to appeal to enthusiasts with their eye-catching wraps and detailing. Each is inspired by a Le Mans race car famous for its thrilling exploits and carries forward a retro theme that previously saw six special GT86 finished in heritage liveries of some of Toyota’s race and rally car legends.
James Clark, Toyota GB Press Relations Manager, said: “The GT86 gives us a great canvas on which to pay tribute to some of the amazing Toyota race cars that have thrilled the crowds at Le Mans. Response to our earlier retro-liveried coupes was fantastic and we hope these new cars – all strictly one-off creations – will generate the same kind of enthusiasm as we approach this year’s 24-hour race.”
Keen-eyed race-goers might spot the cars at Le Mans next week. The first in the new series pays tribute to the Toyota TS010 of 1992, which was powered by a Formula 1-style 3.5-litre V10 engine capable of producing up to 700bhp. Next comes the 1998 TS020, or GT-One, a pure-bred Le Mans car that proved exceptional in qualifying and a record-breaker in the heat of competition. Completing the threesome is a GT86 inspired by the TS050 Hybrid, which came heartbreakingly close to winning Le Mans in 2016.
The cars are fitted with high-level Toyota accessory rear spoilers, in a nod to the high-downforce aero packages featured on the race cars. Vehicle vinyl specialist Funkee Fish reproduced the original liveries to match the shape and proportions of the GT86.
The sports car stance is enhanced with lowered springs that reduce the cars’ ride height by 40mm. Aftermarket alloys were chosen to replicate the designs of the original racing wheels, and a new stainless steel Milltek Sport exhaust system provides a finishing touch and an evocative sound.