The Liquid Hydrogen-Powered Corolla's 2nd 24-Hour Endurance Race: Challenge and Evolution


The liquid hydrogen-powered Corolla has once again competed in the 24-hour endurance race this year. Since last year's race, improvements have been made to build both the team and the car. We follow this evolution.

On May 26, 2024, drivers Morizo and Masahiko Kondo ushered in the GR Corolla after finishing the 24-hour race.

In its second year, the liquid hydrogen-powered Corolla completed 332 laps, covering nearly 1,515 kilometers. However, brake issues prevented it from reaching last year’s record of 358 laps, or nearly 1,634 kilometers.

Feedback from the development team included phrases like "Let's go back to basics," "We learned a lot," and "We were very frustrated."

But one of the goals, to run 30 laps on a single hydrogen refill, was met. This beat last year’s Super Taikyu Final at Fuji, where the average was 20 laps, by a magnitude of 1.5.

Here, Toyota Times News focuses on three aspects of the GR Corolla’s evolution: improved hydrogen pump durability, the world's first elliptical hydrogen tank, and a CO2 capture device.

Development for this year’s 24-hour race was rapid, with trial and error continuing up until just before the race.

Toyota’s participation in the race using a liquid hydrogen-powered vehicle last year was the first attempt of its kind in the world. Improving the car from there was, of course, never straightforward.

But, as Chairman Akio Toyoda, also known as Morizo, said to his team in this year’s New Year’s address,

"Boldly go where no man has gone before.” (a quote from Captain Kirk in Star Trek).

Despite the rush and struggle, the development team never stopped trying. We followed their struggles closely.

This Toyota Times News report is from the 24-hour endurance race in 2023. If you haven’t seen it, be sure to watch.

Photo:Noriaki Mitsuhashi/N-RAK PHOTO AGENCY