Toyota Motor Corporation, the world’s largest automaker, announced plans to continue racing in Formula One and NASCAR series, even as demand for their cars is taking a pit stop worldwide. The carmaker will participate in the two racing series despite being financially restricted by catastrophic business conditions.
According to a Toyota press release, this will be the 8th straight year that Toyota has participated in Formula One competition. Its TF 109 race car, in line with new F1 regulations, sports a broader front wing and improved performance and reliability, according to Toyota.
In Japan, Toyota will participate using the Lexus brand this year and will aim to recapture the Super GT GT5000 title using the Lexus SC430. They will also continue to supply engines to the Japanese Championship Formula Nippon—the top category of car racing in Japan, aiming for the 4th straight title by a Toyota-powered car.
In the U.S., Toyota will again participate in NASCAR’s Sprint Cup Series with the Toyota Camry, which totaled 10 wins in ’08. The carmaker is also aiming to win the Nationwide Series, NASCAR’s second-most popular series, also with the Camry. And Toyota will continue to race the Tundra in the Camping World Truck Series, after capturing both the manufacturer’s and driver’s titles last year.
Toyota is forecasting its first loss in 59 years as the global recession hammers demand for automobiles and the company seeks loans from the Japanese government. But, they also see the value in continuing to market itself in a smart way. Racing is a great way to keep your name out there and Toyota realizes this.