What Is Gazoo Racing and Why Does it Make Toyota Cars Better?

You may have coveted the Toyota Yaris GR that is only available overseas. Or you might have some excitement brewing for a possible future release of a new Toyota GR like the upcoming Corolla hot hatch. Either way, that GR badge is intriguing. But what does it mean? Why does is make Toyota cars better?

GR is not the same as the familiar Toyota Racing Development (TRD) title that some in the lineup have earned. It’s different somehow. Here’s why that GR badge on some of Toyota’s sportiest models is so important.

What is GR in the GR Supra?

a yellow Toyota Supra gr at speed on the road
2021 Toyota Supra GR | Toyota

The GR in the Toyota GR Supra stands for “Gazoo Racing.” Yes, it does in fact keep gaining intrigue the more you know. Not only is this not nearly as apparent as the words TRD stands for, but it’s one more of Toyota’s methods of using hardcore racing technology to produce better-engineered cars. That GR badge is meant to stand for the values, art, architecture, and endurance that make Toyota cars better.

According to MotorTrend, Gazoo means “garage.” The Toyota Supra is the brands most recent production sportscar. The absence of the TRD for the Supra and the GR badge that occurs in this absence will, naturally, have interested fans and enthusiasts wondering. What’s so great about Toyota’s GR sportscars?

What is Gazoo Racing?

“The GR brand races in the World Endurance Championship, the World Rally Championship, among other series.”


OK, so now you know it stands for Gazoo Racing. But really, that doesn’t give us much to go on. We already assumed it had something to do with racing. But what is and how exactly does it trickle down to give these sports cars the GR badge and actually make Toyota cars better?

Toyota Gazoo Racing began as a sort of side project for the Akio Toyoda. He’s now Toyota’s president. He’s also an incredible driver with experience across a number of vehicles over some of the most hardcore roads on Earth.

The story of Toyota Gazoo Racing describes these deep roots in extreme racing culture as part of what makes Toyota build better cars. The Toyota brand has sent numerous cars off to the races and watched them win title after title. This includes the grueling 24 hour Le Mans endurance race––a true testament to how racing helps make Toyota cars better.

Toyota Corolla GR Sport Hybrid is displayed during the first press day at the 89th Geneva International Motor Show
The Toyota Corolla | Robert Hradil/Getty Images

The success that Gazoo Racing sees on the track goes into the details of the making of Toyota production. The concept “Roads Build People and Cars” couldn’t be more true. The experience, trial and error, and mechanical engineering that goes into each race is fleshed out in models like the Toyota GR Supra and the Toyota GR 86.

Does Toyota’s president race cars?

Not only does he race—primarily in rallies on public roads—he also takes part in the 5 Continents Drive. By taking to the road and handling vehicles himself, Akio embodies the Toyota philosophy: “Roads build people, and people build cars.”

Toyota Gazoo Racing

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As one of the realest of the real, Akio Toyoda takes the wheel often. He is the mastermind behind the reliability and performance of today’s Toyota cars. By building cars that he is proud to see in production, Akio Toyoda propels the brand forward.