Toyota has built a prototype of a Le Mans prototype — complete with hybrid system — and may return to the top class of the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2012.
Well, they've already dipped their toe in the water by providing Rebellion Racing with a 'Yota engine for their Lola car in this year's LM24, and sure enough they were the fastest non-diesel car, finishing 6th and beating 7th by ten laps.
So the engine definitely works. Don't know about the hybrid thing. I assume it'll be more Porsche than Prius? I can't imagine it'll have an electric-only function for city driving... Maybe electric-only in the pits though, if that's allowed.
However it works, I wish them all the best. I also want it to look as good as (or cooler than) the GT-One they used in the late '90s. Damn that was a good-looking car.
They said during the race that the other two main Japanese companies might be considering a return too. All three of them ran engines this year and finished well, so who knows? There could be a Japanese assault on Le Mans next year. A non-diesel battle for third place...