Alonso’s “rocketship” WEC Toyota is little changed from last year’s car

World Endurance Championship

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The Toyota TS050 which Fernando Alonso and his team mates will drive in the upcoming World Endurance Championship is little changed from the machine which raced last year.

Toyota presented its car for the 2018-19 WEC ‘super-season’ today. The Japanese firm won five of last year’s nine WEC races but no longer faces any manufacturer rivals in the LMP1 category following the withdrawal of Porsche at the end of last season.

Alonso hailed the performance of the car which is essentially unchanged from the version he tested in Bahrain last year.

“The car is just amazing,” he said. “This machine is something very special.”

“The four-wheel drive together with the boost of the hybrid system,. makes the acceleration like a rocketship. When you go out of the corner and you feel the compression of the seat your eyes are very wide open. Any racing driver should feel that one time.”

Alonso will share one car with Sebastien Buemi and Kazuki Nakajima and the team’s second car will be driven by Mike Conway, Kamui Kobayashi and Jose Maria Lopez.

Alonso will combine his WEC duties for Toyota will a full year’s F1 racing with McLaren. He is currently unable to participate in Toyota’ home WEC event at Fuji due to a clash between it and the United States Grand Prix.

However as F1 Fanatic reported last week a date change for the race is being considered which would allow Alonso to compete. The WEC is due to officially launch its 2018-19 season tomorrow.

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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22 comments on “Alonso’s “rocketship” WEC Toyota is little changed from last year’s car”

  1. If you want to experience this kind of acceleration, go for your local Tesla dealer and ask for a test drive in ludicrous mode.
    Your eyes will be wide open by then ;)

    the Model S P100D hit 0-60 mph in 2.275507139 seconds

    1. F1 cars are even faster than that. Without traction control or launch control. Two wheel drive.

    2. Lmp1 and F1 cars can hold that kind of acceleration way past 100mph. That’s the difference

      1. Nothing touches the acceleration rate of the NHRA Top Fuel Dragsters. 0-100 mph in under one second. They race just 1000 feet and go from 0-340mph in 3.6 seconds. They also have canopies that protect the drivers and they look cool. Almost as cool as the Halo. So F1 is pretty fast but slow in the eyes of some racers.

        1. Im pretty sure those cars would join the Teslas in the back accelerating out of a corner like the article talks about.

    3. Tesla are so slow round a track. Only have a cheap 0-60 trick. When an electric car can win at Leman against a combustion engine that’s when it’s time….. Should be around 2118. At the moment they would drive 30 minutes then pit to recharge for an hour. Let Mans was designed to prove the new motorcar was better than a horse and cart…. Electrics not much better than a horse and cart. Electric cars came 1st but not used as simply not as good…. Combustion cars only need 15% of their fuel on board the rest is all around them.

      1. You really think 2118? One hundred years? You’re out of your mind bud. We’ve had massive advancements in electric vehicles in the past 10 years alone. From 60 miles to almost 1000 on a single charge for some models.

  2. Still no information as to why Anthony Davidson was dropped.

    1. Odd isn’t it. I haven’t read anything about it bar one tweet from somebody who said he was sorry for him. It’s like he retired but only told Toyota…?

  3. digitalrurouni
    8th February 2018, 12:40

    Kind of cheapens the whole Toyota winning Le Mans thing this year since there’s no one in that category. Sad.

    1. There are many factors as to why Toyota wont win Le mans. The ACO will do there best to give the none Hybrid teams parity of performance with Toyota. My prediction is Rebellion will give Toyota a good race and will likely win! They have plenty of experience in LMP1 plus with Toyota lack of reliability and luck….

      1. Rebellion will have a new car built by Oreca.
        if anything its going to be SMP with their BR1 car – its built jointly with dallara, they enter more cars and they already doing test work on it. Or there is also the American Dragonspeed team with the same engine as Rebellion. They opted for the Dallara built BR1 too, and they say they did because Oreca was too slow to start making the car.

    2. just like the Audi wins 2000, 01, 02 ?? A win is a win.

      1. Well for a marque who’s been chasing this win for quite some time now I wouldn’t feel accomplished if it came in a one horse race,…, I honestly hope Alonso his car does not reach the finish as for me it would ruin his triple crown attempt and everything it stands for. But that’s just me.

        1. No more less worthy than Schumacher titles at Ferrari, Vetted at Red Bull and Hamilton at Merc?

  4. A guy from Toyota said last year that “the Hybrid technology” was not good yet to win a 24-hours race. Well, Audi and Porsche won with hybrid technology so the guy was referring to Toyota’s technology.
    If the car is basically the same, Alonso’s chances of winning are less than 50% (there are in theory 2 contenders, the 2 cars from Toyota, if they not enter a 3rd one of course)…

    1. And given Alonso car reliability… Less than 50%.

      1. Which is still higher than the probability that McLaren will win a race this year.

  5. Josh (@canadianjosh)
    8th February 2018, 16:06

    I dont have access on television to the WEC racing but how many cars will be competing in the LMP1 category at any given race? It seems a total shame they only have Toyota. You’d think Mercedes Ferrari Honda BMW ect. would be involved.

    1. @canadianjosh Ferrari and BMW are, in the GT category. But in LMP1 we’re talking near-F1 budgets for considerably less exposure. Not long ago there were four LMP1 manufacturers but Nissan’s effort was a disaster and Dieselgate took care of the two Volkswagen-owned teams.

      1. @keithcollantine Do you really believe Dieselgate is the reason Porsche and Audi quit? Porsche is racking up record quarter after quarter, Volkswagen and Audi sales have not seen a single hit by the entire ‘scandal’. The fine was massive sure, but I really think they just called it a day.

      2. Josh (@canadianjosh)
        9th February 2018, 3:26

        Near F1 budgets, and less races but albeit longer races, wow! I never would have thought.

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