Toyota has set its sights on the World Rally Championship’s first round in Monte Carlo next year to launch its first Rally2 car according to team principal Jari-Matti Latvala.
Since last year, the Japanese manufacturer has been working on a Rally2 version of its GR Yaris in an effort to break into the market for customer rally cars.
The GR Yaris Rally2 underwent a lengthy development program following its public premiere at Rally Japan last year, in preparation for its FIA homologation, which could start this month.
Toyota will join WRC rivals Hyundai and M-Sport-Ford in the Rally2 field, along with Skoda, Citroen, and Volkswagen once the GR Yaris Rally2 has been homologated.
Toyota has set a goal for the availability of its Rally2 car for competitors in 2024, and Latvala is optimistic that as many as four cars are going to be set up for Monte Carlo in January.
Latvala actively contributed to the creation of the GR Yaris Rally2. The car was driven by the 18-time WRC rally winner at the Goodwood Festival of Speed in July, and he also recently won the Rally Hokkaido in Japan.
“It looks like we will try to do the homologation in October and then hopefully we can start production at the end of the year,” Latvala said at Rally Chile. “Our target is to have the first cars in Monte Carlo.
“You need parts for sure but I think maybe we are talking in a realistic world maybe we could have three or four cars.
“I think four cars could be possible if everything goes well.
“First of all, it’s very easy to drive,” he added after his victory in the car at Rally Hokkaido. “Every customer in the future, when this car comes, will be able to adapt to this car very easily.
“The engine has a lot of torque, which makes the drivability better, and there’s a lot of suspension travel, which works well over the bumps.
“The car is so stable and really strong. Thinking about next year with this car, I honestly think it’s going to be competitive.”