Toyota’s Off-Road Beasts Aren’t Always Trucks

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Toyota

TRD trucks get all the attention, but Toyota made some pretty amazing off-road cars, too.

If we said “Toyota Off-Road Racing” you’re first thought would probably be something along the lines of Dakar or Baja. Toyota does a lot more than trucks though, and years ago the biggest and best off-road machines were cars. Group B Rally cars to be more specific. Toyota played hard in that market with the Celica Twincam Turbo, but they were also working on another, faster and more powerful car for the series. We almost had an AWD MR2 supercar.

The 222D was a car based on the new MR2 sports car that was being prepped to tackle machines like Ford’s legendary RS2000. During Group Bs massive rise, Toyota was looking to push further into racing, and the FISA announced plans for a “Type S” series that would require a much lower bar for homologation. Just a simple run of ten cars would qualify, letting companies make incredibly expensive and powerful cars. That was all Toyota needed to start working on the 222D.

Toyota

Sadly the plans for the Type S series were killed off, and with the series gone, Toyota killed the 222D. Unsurprisingly, there is not a ton of information available about this race car, but according to an article over on Rally Group B Shrine, Toyota tested the new car with three different drivetrains. One of which was a 2.2L LeMans GTP engine, and power outputs were said to run between 600 and 750 horsepower. If you want some great visuals, Motorsport Retro did a great piece on the car and took the amazing images you see here. There’s even more on their site if you want to see some more angles.

Again, can you imagine a first-gen MR2, with 750 horsepower and AWD?  That would be incredible.

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