When Toyota withdrew from the World Rally Championship at the end of the ’99 season with the Manufacturers’ title, it marked the end of an era.
The Japanese automaker had been a part of the WRC since its earliest days and had enjoyed plenty of success along the way, but with Formula 1 on its mind, Toyota’s factory-backed rallying efforts came to an abrupt end. That is, until this year…
When Akio Toyoda became president of the Toyota Motor Corporation back in 2009, he vowed to bring some real excitement back to the brand. Motorsport was always going to play a big part in that, and after working with World Rally Championship legend Tommi Mäkinen on a personal project, the next logical step was for Toyoda-san to recruit the four-time WRC world champion to head up Toyota Gazoo Racing and return Toyota to its rallying roots.
This excellent new 50-minute documentary takes a behind the scenes look at the 500 days leading up to Toyota’s triumphant WRC comeback after an 18-year hiatus.