Toyota 86 Cup Car arrives to prove “slow car fast” still works

The Toyota 86 really sits in a segment all its own. It’s a no-frills coupe with a naturally aspirated 2.0-liter flat-4 that produces a modest 205 horsepower—the pinnacle of “slow car fast.”

But that doesn’t mean it can’t be fun, and the new Toyota 86 Cup Car racer is here to prove that.

Toyota announced the 86 Cup will make its racing debut at the Pirelli World Challenge on August 11, where it will compete in the TCA class. Its rivals include the Mazda MX-5 Cup and Honda Civic Si. The Toyota 86 Cup was born from Toyota Racing Development and DG-Spec Racing after Toyota decided to explore an 86 Cup car following the nameplate’s win at the Spring Fling Autocross event in Southern California.

The 86’s engine and transmission are identical to the road car, but upgrades to the brakes, suspension, and essential safety equipment are all outfitted for the 86 Cup. Craig Stanton, former Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series GT-Class and Continental Tire GS-Class champion, has been tapped to pilot the 86 Cup at its debut outing, but Toyota hasn’t revealed plans to race the car at any other series just yet.

Toyota previously revealed an 86 GT4 race car in 2013, though it was strictly a European affair. As for the 86 Cup, we’ll see its racing chops in action when it takes to the Utah Motorsports Campus in Tooele, Utah, in just a week.

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