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Toyota Gazoo Racing enters the World Rally Championship in 2017 with the Toyota Yaris WRC marking the next chapter in the brand’s rich rally heritage. With the start of the season in Monte Carlo, the team are putting the finishing touches to their preparations for an event they have been eagerly awaiting. They have spent thousands of hours in the workshop and on the testing programme, focusing on the single goal of being ready for the first rally in the 2017 calendar.

Taking part in the WRC, the pinnacle of the sport, is certain to provide Toyota with new challenges and opportunities to further develop its people, explore new technologies and experience different roads and driving conditions around the world, thus contributing to its commitment to make better cars.

The Yaris WRC has been developed in compliance with FIA technical regulations for 2017 and is part of a new generation of world rally cars that will add a new dimension to the sport’s top-flight category in the seasons ahead. It is equipped with a 380hp1.6-liter direct injection engine and presents an impressive design, thanks to the freedom in the regulations regarding aerodynamics.

Rallying’s high-speed world of mud, gravel, ice and snow seems far removed from the cool, clean world of high technology, but Toyota and Microsoft are ready to use on-the-limit competition as an ideal test bed for advanced systems that will help deliver the autonomous cars of the future.

Microsoft was revealed as a technology partner to Toyota’s World Rally Championship programme at the Paris motor show and will be playing an important role in helping the Toyota Gazoo Racing team during their debut season in the sport’s top tier in 2017. At the same time, it will be gathering valuable data that will feed directly into the Toyota Research Institute’s work exploring how artificial intelligence can be used to deliver safer, sustainable and more convenient mobility.