Toyota to show off retro-inspired GT86 coupes at 2015 Goodwood Festival of Speed

Article by Christian Andrei, on June 5, 2015

A one-off collection of six classic Toyota GT86 coupes will debut on June 25 at the Goodwood Festival of Speed’s Moving Motor Show. These cars can be booked for public test drives on a course that includes Goodwood’s hillclimb. The GT86 sports car has roots in generations of classic performance cars from Toyota, with their amazing handling and their timeless, low-slung styling.

This fleet is being built as a tribute to the iconic race and rally cars during the past half-century. These cars were transformed and given retro styling and classic liveries. Every coupe takes inspiration from a different car. There are a couple of sporting versions of the automaker’s 2000GT (its original sports car) and the 1970s Celica 1600GT rally car from Ove Andersson.

This vehicle was part of the inspiration behind Toyota’s full international motorsports programme. The other machines that were celebrated in this fleet are the IMSA GTU Celica that joined in races in North America in the 1980s and the World Rally Championship Celica GT-Four and the Esso Ultron Tiger Supra that you may recognize from the All-Japan Grand Touring Car Championship.

The GT86 received key elements from the original liveries that were reproduced by vehicle vinyl specialist Motor Mode. The cars’ height is lower by 40mm with the use of new springs. Even the new wheels, which come in various finishes, have a retro appearance. Giving these vehicles that additional flourish is a new Milltek Sport stainless steel exhaust system.

Festival visitors will be able to see these cars on static display at the Goodwood racing circuit in support of the GT86 Drift Experience. In particular, the Yatabe Speed Trial Toyota 2000GT is yellow with a green bonnet. Numerous world and international speed and endurance records were set by this 2000GT in 1966 during a 72-hour run at the Yatabe High Speed Testing Course in Japan.

The second coupe – the Shelby Toyota 2000GT is white with a blue bonnet. In the U.S., racing icon Carroll Shelby was the force behind Toyota’s racing programme for the 2000GT. The car competed with established American and European rivals. In 1968, drivers Scooter Patrick and Dave Jordan duly received several wins.

Then there’s Ove Andersson’s Toyota Celica 1600GT that’s red and has a black bonnet. This first-generation Celica ushered in the founding of Toyota Team Europe that ultimately led to the creation of Toyota Motorsport. The liveried GT86 commemorates the car that participated in the 1972 Daily Mirror RAC Rally that received official manufacturer support from Toyota.

Its win in the class and placing ninth overall were indications of the amazing things that this partnership will offer. The IMSA GTU Toyota Celica is red and has yellow stripes. Celica became the first car from Toyota to participate in a North American race under the Toyota Racing Developments (TRD) banner, joining in the IMSA GT series.

The IMSA GTU car was very successful from 1983 to 1985 with Dan Gurney’s All-America Racing Team. Castrol Toyota Celica GT-Four is red and has a green Castrol livery. This Group A Toyota debuted in the World Rally Championship in 1994. In the 1995 season, it won seven podium finishes in seven events, which include a win for Didier Auriol in the Tour de Corse.

The Esso Ultron Tiger Toyota Supra is a standout with its tigerskin effect. Supra competed in the All-Japan Grand Touring Car Championship from 1995 to 2006. This means that it raced even beyond the end of production of the road-going Supra. When it stopped going on track, it was immortalized as a virtual racer in the Gran Turismo computer game. Undeniably, the Esso Ultron Tiger car has one of the most distinctive looks in the grid. [source: Toyota]

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