Toyota unveil Super 2000 Corolla
- 2nd March 2007, 12:31pm
The striking new race car will be the world's first new model Corolla homologated to the FIA's Super 2000 (S2000) specifications.
The S2000 category was developed by the FIA to allow manufacturers to build relatively inexpensive rally cars using a common, controlled formula.
S2000's introduction will see the end of Toyota's Group N Prototype Corolla rally car - the vehicle that delivered the manufacturer first and second in the 2006 NEC Australian Rally Championship, as well as the manufacturers' championship.
The common elements to S2000 include engines, gearboxes and weight restrictions.
The TRD team is developing the 2.0-litre four-cylinder naturally aspirated 3SGE engine for the new car.
Providing approximately 190kW of power and 240Nm of torque, the engine revs to a high limit of 8500rpm.
The car's pace is enhanced by its low specified weight - a mere 1150 kilograms.
The SADEV six-speed sequential gearbox is another controlled element of the S2000 specification.
TRD-specific components on the new car include MCA shock absorbers built by Murray Coote, and an AP Racing brake package with four spot callipers front and rear, with 300mm rotors.
"I'm a big fan of the Super 2000 category," said TRD team boss Neal Bates.
"The dynamics are a lot better than our old car because it is so much lighter and it will provide us with the opportunity to compete on the world stage in the Asia-Pacific rounds of the World Rally Championship.
"The S2000 category will also allow for the development of controlled parts for all manufacturers which will ultimately provide lower costs.
"Apart from this, the sound of the engine revving up to 8500rpm is amazing.
"We have been very encouraged by our first tests in the development car - the Group N (P) car had reached a plateau in terms of development, but it is exciting for us to try and make this new one as fast as possible."
2006 Australian Rally Champion Simon Evans cannot wait to get hold of the new car in competition.
"It is a great-looking car," he said. "The shape of the new Corolla and the new livery are really striking.
"There is still a lot of development to go to have it right for the Rally of Canberra, but our test times have been competitive.
"I think S2000 has all the ingredients to appeal to both manufacturers and motorsport fans - particularly when they hear the cars howling through the forest."
Simon and Sue Evans will drive the current shape Group N (P) Corolla at the first two rounds of the Australian Rally Championship in Queensland and Western Australia.
Neal Bates and Coral Taylor will run these events in a current shape S2000 development car - converted from a Group N (P) Corolla.
It is expected that two brand-new Corolla S2000 rally cars will be debuted during Round 3 of the championship in Canberra.
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