Toyota completes second race with updated hydrogen IC racer

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Toyota has successfully completed its second race – the five-hour Super Taikyu Race at Autopolis in Ōita prefecture, Japan – using its hydrogen-fueled Toyota Corolla, with Toyota President Akio again piloting the car.

The hydrogen engine Corolla, which uses an adapted version of the 3-cyl engine from the Yaris GR, made its debut at the Fuji Super Tec 24 Hours Race in May, with a stated goal of accelerating the pace of development of Toyota’s hydrogen fuelled IC engine. This that race, Toyota says it has implemented a number of improvements both to the car and to its related hydrogen infrastructure.

These have included modifications to the engine calibration, which have increased combustion stability while also netting a 15% torque increase and a 9% increase in power. The responsiveness of the engine has also been improved.

One of Toyota’s main goals was to increase reliability, with the car having to make several extended stops during the previous test at the Fuji 24-hour race in April; there were no unscheduled stops at the Autopolis round. Impressively, Koji Sato, president of Toyota Gazoo Racing, also reported that 40kg had been shaved from the overall vehicle weight.

From an infrastructure perspective, Toyota says that refueling times have been reduced by 40%, from approximately five minutes to around three, thanks to an increase in the fuel flow rate from the three mobile hydrogen filling rigs it used.

The car was classified 43rd out of 44 entries, and Toyota is planning on entering the remaining two Super Taikyu rounds of the season at Suzuka and Okayama.

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Lawrence has been covering engineering subjects – with a focus on motorsport technology – since 2007 and has edited and contributed to a variety of international titles. Currently, he is responsible for content across UKI Media & Events' portfolio of websites while also writing for the company's print titles.

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