Toyota has teased the look of its new Le Mans Hypercar which will replace the LMP1 class for the 2021 World Endurance Championship.
This weekend’s 8 Hours of Bahrain marks the final ever race for the current-gen Toyota LMP1 machine, with the team already well underway with fine-tuning the development of its next challenger.
The hybrid-powered prototype was put through its initial paces last month when Brendon Hartley, Mike Conway, Sebastien Buemi and Jose Maria Lopez were present at a three-day private test at Paul Ricard.
The test reportedly went smoothly with drivers and team officials remaining coy on the exact details of the car.
Toyota will carry out further endurance tests over the next few months before launching the car on January 11. It will then make its debut race at the 1000 Miles of Sebring in March.
The team will reveal technical details of the car as well as its driver line-up for 2021 closer to the launch.
Cars entered in the LMH class will be limited on maximum power output to 670bhp, over 100bhp less than what is currently delivered by the LMP1 hybrid system. This is to have the cars run more in line with the LMDh prototypes in the IMSA series which are based off LMP2 regulations. Both LMH and LMDh will then be able to compete against each other as early as 2022.
The LMH category has led to plenty of interest among potential competitors, namely Peugeot and Glickenhaus. The latter announced their intention for a two-car entry back in June.
This weekend’s LMP1 send off only sees both Toyota cars as the sole entrants with Sebastien Buemi setting the pace in the opening practice session held overnight.