Akio Toyoda Got Some Seat Time In Toyota’s New WRC Competitor

akio toyoda rally1 gr yaris wrc

Toyota Gazoo Racing / YouTube

Akio Toyoda is a unique executive for many reasons. Most notable among them is that he is willing to personally sign off on a car as absurdly specialized as the standard GR Yaris, entirely because he sees value in building great road cars born from great race cars. But he also has an enthusiasm for actually driving the fast cars his company builds that stands out, particularly as he continues to race them under his less-than-secret pseudonym “Morizo” at events like the Nurburging 24. It is that interest that makes him the most qualified top automotive executive in the world to actually drive a WRC car at its launch event.

So, of course, he did that earlier this week.

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Akio Toyoda, President and CEO of Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC) is the 2021 World Car Person of the Year.

PHOTO (select to view enlarged photo)

The honor was bestowed by the World Car Awards jury, a panel of more than 90 distinguished international journalists.

The World Car Awards announced: “Akio Toyoda is the charismatic President and CEO of Toyota Motor Corporation, where he has spent years successfully remaking his company. In 2020, under his leadership, Toyota remained profitable, despite COVID-19, thus protecting jobs worldwide. He has maintained Toyota’s steady pace of development for the Connected, Autonomous, Shared and Electric (CASE) era and has initiated construction of the Woven City, an exciting, real-life prototype city of the future. All while actively participating in motorsports himself, as a driver.”

Responding to the World Car Awards, President Toyoda said: “On behalf of all 360,000 Toyota Team members around the world, thank you for this tremendous honor. If you don’t mind, however, I would like to change this award from car ‘person’ of the year to car ‘people’ of

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