New Toyota TS040 Hybrid For Le Mans Sports 985 HP
|   Monday, April 07, 2014
Toyota has inaugurated on the tests circuit of Paul Ricard the new TS040 Hybrid prototype, which will compete in the 24 Hours of Le Mans, and which provides a total of 985 hp.

Toyota became the third and final constructor, which presents the prototype that will tackle the 2014 season of the World Endurance Championship and therefore the 24-hour race at Le Mans, in June, for the LMP1 class.

Called the Toyota TS040 Hybrid, the new prototype is able to deliver 985 horsepower via a 3.
-liter naturally aspirated engine of 512 hp and a hybrid system on the rear axle, which in turn creates 473 hp.

The Technical Regulation allows the use of a hybrid system that provides up to 8 MJ of energy per lap, but Toyota has limited capacity to only 6 MJ, to keep the weight of the prototype at a lower value.

"We considered bigger hybrid capacity but settled on 6 MJ as anything greater, using kinetic energy recovery, had a negative effect on lap time due to increased weight. To recover that amount of energy under braking, the rear motor-generator was not enough so we returned to the four-wheel hybrid concept we developed from 2007 to 2011, before the regulations limited hybrid boost to just one axle. With 1000 PS we have achieved very impressive performance and kept the system within our weight targets. Now it's time to see what it can do against the competition" stated Hisatake Murata, General Manager, Motorsports Unit Development Division.

Toyota is testing the new model TS040 Hybrid in an evaluation session which takes place on the Paul Ricard circuit in France. 

The Japanese had already established two copies and the pilots who will participate in the competition. The first will be manned by Alex Wurz, Kazuki Nakajima and Stephane Sarrazin, while the second prototype will be driven by Anthony Davidson, Nicolas Lapierre and Sebastien Buemi.

Porsche and Audi have already shown prototypes that will participate in the 24-hour race at Le Mans this year: the Porsche 919 Hybrid and Audi R18 e-tron quattro.
The TS040 Hybrid debuted at the Paul Ricard on 21 January and has since then completed 12 days of testing across Europe, amounting to around 18,000 km.

Toyota driver Alex Wurz, said "It is phenomenal, extremely powerful. Four-wheel-drive allows us to accelerate better--it feels like a rocket ship! But an important reason to go to four-wheel-drive was to recover more energy under braking and that works extremely well."

"We are very much looking forward to our third season in the FIA World Endurance Championship when we will fight to achieve our dream of winning Le Mans and the World Championship. As a team we learnt a lot in our first two seasons in WEC and all this know-how has gone into our new TS040 Hybrid, which is the most technologically-advanced Toyota ever to compete on the track. We consider it very important that our racing program contributes to Toyota's wider activities and I am very proud that data, knowledge and technology pass regularly from our racing programme to our R&D colleagues, who are working to make great road cars of the future" said Yoshiaki Kinoshita, Team President.
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