Toyoda and Kankkunen agree about hydrogen being the future of rallying

Akio Toyota and Juha Kankkunen believe that hydrogen could be the future of rallying with the last one describing his experience with the Toyota GR Yaris in Belgium.

Toyota brought a hydrogen powertrain in Ypres last weekend which was developed in an upgraded GR Yaris and Kankkunen had the chance to drive this car on one stage each day.

Moreover, Jari-Matti Latvala drove a hydrogen-powered GR Corolla in June when the event Fuji 24h was held for WEC Championship.

Finally, it must be mentioned that the Japanese brand is the first worldwide that developed the hydrogen technology to an industry car, Mirai, and in fact it used Mirai as a zero car at Rallye Deutschland back in 2017 when Toyota rejoined World Rally Championship.

"I hope so", Toyoda answered if the hydrogen could be the future for rallying.

"Hydrogen or electricity needs infrastructures.

"We have a hydrogen station in Belgium so we need that kind of infrastructure, however if we move with these kind of activities, and we continue, and all the people feel the same feelings then we can make our future together.

"The world issue for the automobile industry is carbon neutrality. 

"We need it.

"However to build up the automobile industry we have a lot of people who love cars and love to drive and love engines and the business with petrol.

"If you look at the environment things, is there any solution for a win-win situation? 

"This hydrogen is used in engines and we have engine sounds, and the only output from the car is water, so this is good for the environment, and good for being fun to drive".

Finally, Kankkunen said about the hydrogen: "I don’t know what will happen but it is for sure one solution.

"Rallies are too long for full electric cars plus they are very heavy and they have no noise but if you have clean fuel like that, I think it will be the future for rallying.

"You have to compare it to a standard GR Yaris, the engine is different, there is more torque and maybe a little bit more power. 

"I was changing the gears on the straight all of the time and it was going to rev limiter straight away.

"It burns better than the fuel you can buy from the petrol station it looks like that, that was the first impression for me. 

"The response is good from the engine. 

"It was surprisingly good. 

"I thought it would be less and lazy but it is quicker than the standard car.

"There is no difference in engine braking because it is still the petrol engine. 

"When you lift off the throttle it brakes automatically and the compression is the same".


Photo Credits: Toyota

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