Toyota Gazoo racing SA ready for 2022 Dakar rally
Toyota Gazoo Racing reveal brand new Dakar rally challenger
As we near the end of the year Toyota Gazoo Racing are hard at work putting the final touches on their brand new, bespoke racing Hilux ahead of the 2022 Dakar rally. A formidable record has seen the team achieve nine podiums in the last 10 races, including three third places, five second places and a single victory.
Ahead of the 2022 Dakar rally, the sports controlling body, the FIA, released a new set of regulations now known as the T1+ category. This new T1+ category allows for bigger 37-inch wheels, increased suspension travel from 280mm to 350mm and a wider track.
Toyota Gazoo racing, based near Kyalami, used this opportunity to completely redesign and rebuild their car and install a new engine. In the form of the brand-new turbocharged 3,5-litre V6 sourced from the Land Cruiser 300. The engine has been fettled to produce 298kW and 700Nm, with a very usable torque curve, despite strict boost limitations, which form part of the new regulations.
The big news is that the bakkie now rides larger diameter 37-inch BF Goodrich KDR2 tyres, which should be considerably more puncture resistant than the tyres used previously.
The new chassis and suspension is covered in wider, menacing looking, carbon fibre body panels that are finished in the latest Toyota Gazoo racing livery.
This years Dakar rally will see a number of new vehicles enter the fray, including Audi who will be entering a big budget team with a partially electric vehicle while Prodrive will be campaigning a biofuel powered BRX.
Toyota Gazoo racings team of drivers who did duty in 2021 remains the same, however there have been a few changes in the navigator seats.
Qatar’s Nasser Al-Attiyah and French co-driver Mathieu Baumel will be leading the team. The 2019 Dakar Rally winners will again have Giniel de Villiers (2009 Dakar winner) as teammate, and the South African will be partnered with co-driver Dennis Murphy for the 2022 edition of the race.
South Africans Henk Lategan and Brett Cummings as well as Shameer Variawa and co-driver Danie Stassen, will complete the four car line up.
The 2022 Dakar Rally starts on the 1st of January in Hail, Saudi Arabia.
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