Toyota Unveils Upgraded Hilux and Elite Team for Dakar 2024

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Toyota Unveils Upgraded Hilux and Elite Team for Dakar 2024

In 2024, TOYOTA GAZOO Racing (TGR) will participate in the Dakar Rally with an upgraded version of their previous winning car, now named the GR IMT Hilux EVO T1U. This name signifies both the enhancements made to the vehicle and its new categorisation as W2RC. TGR will enter five teams in Dakar 2024, featuring two rookie drivers taking on the gruelling race alongside experienced racers like Giniel de Villiers, Lucas Moraes, and Seth Quintero.

Moreover, Lucas and Seth, along with their co-drivers, will compete in the entire 2024 season of the FIA World Rally-Raid Championship (W2RC), benefitting from Giniel de Villiers' vast Dakar experience, who won the Rally in 2009. Giniel boasts an impressive record, completing 20 Dakars with numerous top 10, podium, and top 5 finishes.

Another promising addition to the team is young racer Saood Variawa, who will make his Dakar debut at 18, following in his father's footsteps. Despite being new to Dakar, the team includes Guy Botterill, who has a strong record in South African rallies.

While some South African drivers will compete in the South African Rally-Raid Series (SARRC) to test the GR IMT Hilux EVO T1U, the rest will aim for victory in the W2RC after the Dakar Rally.

The new GR IMT Hilux EVO T1U is wider and incorporates various refinements, including suspension improvements and enhanced cooling. Toyota's commitment to quality, durability, and reliability drove the car's development, with extensive testing done throughout the year.

Additionally, the team is working towards sustainability, partnering with Repsol as part of the Dakar Future project. The Dakar 2024 event is set to begin on January 5th, featuring challenging stages and a '48-hour Chrono' stage, culminating in Yanbu on January 19th.

Quotes from team members express their excitement and confidence in the upcoming Dakar Rally. Toyota GAZOO Racing South Africa acknowledges its sponsors' support in this endeavour.

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