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motorsport-news.co.uk DECEMBER 4 2013 3

HEADLINE NEWS

Photos: LAT and mcklein-imagedatabase.com

World Rally Championship comeback

TOYOTA

TOYOTA TOYOTA TOYOTAGEARS UP FOR POTENTIAL

WRC RETURN

Toyota CelicaTurbo 4WD 16 wins, 38 podiums, three drivers’ titles,two manufacturers’titles Toyota’s second Group A car was a solid, sensible and eventually very successful evolution of the GT4. Like its predecessor, there were teething troubles which had to be solved in the Celica before it would go on to become a dominant force in world rallying. A multitude of holes in the bumper and bonnet ensured airflow wouldn’t be a problem for a reliable and very strong engine, but the transmission did cause some issues. The ST185, as the car was codenamed, was never the easiest of things to drive. The use of a viscous coupling centre differential helped rid the car of some of the understeer and inspired more confidence from drivers Carlos Sainz, Juha Kankkunen and Didier Auriol – all of whom won titles in the car. This was the car which delivered Toyota the manufacturers’ title.

Sainz took the cr ow n in 1990

GT4 Celica Toyota

Toyota Celica GT4 13 wins, 32 podiums, one drivers’title, nomanufacturers’titles This was the first Group A rally car which looked capable of threatening Lancia’s dominance...eventually. The GT4, which made its debut in Corsica, 1988, struck trouble early on in its career, with the most significant issue being the lack of cooling for the engine. The car was homologated with little allowance for an intake of cool air or the exit of hot air from the engine bay and it subsequently struggled with overheating on hot rallies. TTE fully understood this issue, but convincing Japan that its car needed more holes in the front was not a straightforward task. The GT4 was, however, ahead of its time on the transmission front, with a hydraulic centre diff dividing power to the front and rear wheels depending on acceleration and braking. Once reliable, the car was quick enough for Sainz to take his first world title in 1990.

Toyota CelicaTCT Six wins, 13 podiums, no drivers’titles, nomanufacturers’titles Rather unkindly nicknamed the ‘whistling pig’ the Toyota Celica Twin Cam Turbo was a Group B car doomed to fail on European rounds of the World Rally Championship. Rear-wheel drive was history and the TCT rarely troubled the top spot when it came face to face with the likes of Peugeot’s 205 T16 or Audi’s quattro on sprint events. But, in Africa, nothing could touch it. An uncomplicated design made the Celica easy to fix while plenty of suspension travel made it ideal for the Safari – and a 160mph top speed from the 400bhp blown motor gave it the legs on its rivals. No wonder it won six from six African WRC rounds (three Ivory Coast, three Safaris) between 1983 and 1986.

African queen: the Celica TCT

Toyota was last in the WRC as a works team back in ’99

Toyota Corolla WRC Four wins, 30 podiums, no drivers’ titles, onemanufacturers’title After TTE’s period of enforced exile (banned for a season at the end of 1995 for cheating with the last Celica derivative, the ST205), it returned with the Corolla WRC– the company’s one and only WRCar. Brimming with new technology, not all of it – the joystick gearshift being a case in point – went down well. This car will probably be remembered for letting Sainz down just a few hundred metres away from the finish of the RAC Rally in 1998. Sainz and Toyota were on for both titles before a blown engine stopped them in their tracks. The car did win the makes title in 1999 though.

titles both for on were Toyota and Sainz engine blown a before their in them stopped did car The tracks.

title makes the win though. 1999 in

Corolla was a tough car

VW’S LATVALA SAYS HE IS FREE TO BATTLE

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