All of you who are already in love with Toyotas 4A-GE engines (Blue Top, Black Top, or Red Top) or made the experience of know that a 2JZ-GTE six-cylinder engine is simply bulletproof are now on the right page of the KW automotive blog. We were very lucky to spend a day at the Toyota Gazoo Racing Europe. There we kissed hoods of legendary race cars and crawled into the wheelhouses.
Very seldom, or at select events such as an open house, do outsiders have the chance to admire some of the automotive treasures of Toyota’s rich motorsports history. After all, not everyone is a KW Performance partner like Mr. Kraemer of JP Performance.
Since the late seventies, Cologne has been the headquarters of Toyota Gazoo Racing Europe (Toyota Team Europe, Toyota Motorsport GmbH); the more or less secret motorsport development department, in a way the “skunkworks”, of the Japanese car manufacturer Toyota.
From rally cars to prototype racing cars to Formula 1 bolides – many motorsport milestones were created at Toyota Gazoo Racing Europe.
Worldwide, all Toyota GR Supra GT4 are homologated with a KW motorsport suspension for customer sports
The Toyota GR Supra GT4 is among the most popular race cars in customer racing. For the past 15 years, the GT4 racing category, which was founded on the initiative of the SRO Motorsports Group (SRO), became a popular customer sports class.
The Toyota GR Supra GT4 race cars, for example, compete in various GT4 series such as the ADAC GT4 Germany, the DTM Trophy, NLS Endurance Championship at the Nürburgring, and many other series around the globe.
Handcrafted for worldwide customer sport
In an inconspicuous workshop, the prefabricated Toyota GR Supra lightweight bodyshells get transformed by the Toyota motorsport mechanics into the racing cars used in various GT4 championships and endurance races around the world.
In its segment, the street-version Toyota GR Supra is an agile sports car and the perfect basis for a GT4 race car.
In detail, the motorsports car and the road car differ only in minor but significant details. For example, the turbocharged 3.0-liter inline-six from the BMW engine shelf produces 430 hp in the race car, depending on the balance-of-performance rating.
The engine will be installed in Cologne together with a revised wiring harness and engine management system from Magnet Marelli. Shifting is via a seven-speed automatic, which transmits the 650 Nm of maximum torque to the drive axle via a motorsport differential.
The Toyota GR Supra GT4 interior is basically only home to a dashboard panel made of light-weight carbon fiber and a compact carbon center console with a few controls.
The majority of the vehicle settings, such as the twelve-stage racing ABS, are made directly via the steering wheel in interplay with the race dash, as is usual in modern race cars.
With the carbon bucket seat, light-weight racing tank, fire extinguishing system and safety cell, the GR Supra GT4 weight 1350 kilograms.
As mentioned at the beginning, the Toyota GR Supra GT4 is also homologated with our racing shocks, like many other race cars in worldwide customer sports.
In the GT4 class, we rely on our two-way adjustable single-tube dampers with external reservoir (KW Competition 2A EXR aka KW V3 Racing). On the Toyota GR Supra GT4, the reservoir is connected to the damper via a hose connection and the 2A EXR can be installed regardless of the mounting position.
For this reason, the wheel-leading struts on the front axle and the dampers on the drive axle are built in an upside-down design -such as a kind of inverted monotube design.
For us at KW automotive, it is a very great privilege to equip all Toyota GR Supra GT4s with our KW racing dampers and, to be able to assist the Japanese car manufacturer with our Reiger Suspension off-road suspensions in numerous rally projects such as the Dakar.
Words C. Schmidt, Images E. Paesschezzone