Powering the TS030 Hybrid will be a normally-aspirated 3.4L V8 with a Toyota Hybrid System - Racing (THS-R) piggyback and 500kJ capacitor storage developed by Nisshinbo. The benefits of hybrid technology in motorsports cannot be taken lightly. It not only helps reduce lap times, but also improves fuel efficiency, which pays dividends in a 24 hour race. But with current regulations limiting hybrid power to only two wheels, more track time is needed to determine if the electric motor will be more suited powering the front or rear wheels.
At the moment, TMG has only built one LMP1 chassis for testing at the Paul Ricard Circuit in France, where a second car will be put together in time for the 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps in May. Recruited for driving duties for the No.1 machine are Alex Wurz, Nicolas Lapierre, and Kazuki Nakajima, while the roster for car No.2 is still being finalized.
13 years since their last appearance in Le Mans, and 3 years since their last Formula 1 Grand Prix, Toyota will once again line up on the grid for a shot at the top step in the podium. But will they have the power and reliability to beat the might of the Audi's at Le Mans? The world will find out on the 16th and 17th of June, 2012.
Toyota TS030 Hybrid Specs: