Kyle Busch, 85 time race winner, took the passenger seat in May to Akio Toyoda. The CEO of Toyota wanted to test driver the 2013 NASCAR Sprint Cup Camry personally. The Camry stock racer is to be submitted for final approval this summer.
Commenting after going through the cars paces, Akio led with apologies to motor sports enthusiasts for keeping them waiting. He assures drivers the latest FR styled Camry “handles with great performance.”
Mr. Toyoda was no slouch on the track, hitting some pretty nice amateur lap times and taking the turns like a champ. After his initial test drive Akio mingled with press and NASCAR teams as other drivers tested out his race machine.
The design for this latest Camry took 18 months, with final approvals going through in October. Toyota’s research and development team worked closely with Nascar to ensure the car could retain much of its’ consumer model look and appeal, and also that it could achieve ‘aero parity’ in the garage.
Akio Toyoda kept his glasses on under his helmet while putting the Camry through its’ paces. He was gracious enough to sign some autographs afterwords and had a translator with him to field questions from media representatives.
We can expect to see a lot of other NASCAR manufactures follow suit in attempts to create cars that more closely resemble their street models. “Win on Sunday, sell on Monday.”