Toyota Gazoo Racing announces four-car team and all-new Toyota GR DKR Hilux T1 + for Dakar 2022



23.09.2021: TOYOTA GAZOO Racing will enter a team of four crews in the next Dakar rally, which will take place in Saudi Arabia from January 2, 2022. As in 2021, the factory team will be led by Nasser Al-Attiyah and navigator Mathieu Baumel.

TOYOTA GAZOO Racing will enter a team of four crews in the next Dakar rally, which will take place in Saudi Arabia from January 2, 2022. As in 2021, the factory team will be led by Nasser Al-Attiyah and navigator Mathieu Baumel.

Giniel de Villiers will be associated with navigator Dennis Murphy; Henk Lategan and Brett Cummings will be back for their second Dakar; and Shameer Variawa will now be associated with navigator Danie Stassen. The team will also field an all-new Toyota GR DKR Hilux T1 +, which complies with the updated regulations for the T1 category. The prototype car, in a temporary raw carbon fiber finish, is currently being tested for official reveal later in 2021.

Building on the experience of Dakar 2021, the team will continue to field a mix of experienced specialists, such as Nasser and Giniel, while consolidating Henk as a rising force in the sport. Shameer will aim to improve on his 21st position in the previous race.

Since finishing second in the 2021 edition of the race, 2019 winners Nasser (Qatar) and Mathieu (France) have propelled the Rallye d’Andalusia to victory; as well as the Baja Spain Aragon.

The duo, who have won the FIA ​​Cross-Country Rallies World Cup three times in a row, will aim to add a fourth Dakar victory to their record in 2022. Giniel and Dennis, both from South Africa, took part with success at the South African cross. -Country Series (SACCS), which also serves as a test bed for the continued development of the Toyota Dakar Hilux. They were leading the title race after three of the seven rounds that make up the series.

With a crash on stage 5 of Dakar 2021 forcing South Africans Henk and Brett to retire after recording very competitive times in stages 3 and 4, they will be eager to show their pace and mix it up with the crews. more experienced that precede them. Henk’s Dakar debut has caught the world’s attention, and the young driver from Johannesburg, who has won the SACCS crown several times, will look to build on that experience in a meaningful way.

Finally, Shameer and Danie, also South Africans, will complete the four-car team. Shameer, who has won several championships in South Africa, completed his first Dakar in 2021, but Danie will now take care of the navigation duties. This will be Danie’s first Dakar, but he’s campaigning in the SACCS with Shameer, so both should easily find their place in the car.

Following TOYOTA GAZOO Racing’s philosophy of ‘making ever better cars’, the team has continued to refine the Hilux and the latest iteration will spearhead the team’s Dakar Rally campaign. For 2022, the team is developing a new version of the Toyota Dakar Hilux, based on the latest rules.

The new Toyota GR DKR Hilux T1 + will share components with the race-proven Hilux which was first introduced in 2018 and won the race in 2019, but will feature many improvements including a bigger undercarriage – tires 37 inches, compared to 32 inches; with an increase in tread from 245 mm to 320 mm. The new car also has more suspension travel with the previous limit of 280mm now increased to 350mm.

Under the hood, the car is now fitted with a 3.5-liter twin-turbo petrol V6 engine, taken from the all-new Toyota Land Cruiser 300, as used in the striking new GR-S version of the iconic vehicle. As standard, the engine produces 305 kW of power at 5,200 rpm and 650 Nm of torque from 2,000 rpm. However, when racing, these numbers are significantly higher.

As TOYOTA GAZOO Racing’s WEC and WRC teams score landmark victories in their disciplines, all eyes will be on the latest Toyota Hilux when it rolls out of its cover towards the end of 2021. With the WEC team competing on the tarmac, and the WRC team taking care of the rally action, the rally raid team is a force to be reckoned with in the world’s most iconic cross-country car race, the Dakar Rally.

Left: Dakar Hilux 2021 Right: Dakar Hilux 2022 (Prototype)

Dakar 2022 will again be based solely in the Saudi Arabian desert, although the race this time runs clockwise. The race will begin on January 2 in the northern city of Ha’il, before crossing south to the Empty Quarter. The rest day will take place in the Saudi capital of Riyadh on January 8, before the race heads southwest until the finish in Jeddah city on January 14.

The race will begin with a prologue to determine the starting positions for Stage 1. Two loop stages will also feature on the course, although details have yet to be announced by the organizers. Finally, the traditional Marathon stage will see the crews move away from the main bivouac to an unsupported camp for an overnight stopover, before returning to join their technical crews at the main bivouac. It is a difficult part of the race, which often plays a major role in its result.

The final route of the Dakar 2022 has not yet been announced, but the terrain is expected to be similar to that encountered in 2020 and 2021.


Glyn Hall, Team Principal: “We are very happy to announce a very similar team to last year. With Nasser and Giniel leading our attack and Henk gaining confidence, we are delighted to tackle the 2022 edition of the Dakar Rally. Our new GR DKR Hilux T1 + is progressing well, and we are confident that the new car will allow us to compete at a new level in January. “

Nasser Al-Attiyah:
“I’m very happy to be back with the TOYOTA GAZOO Racing team for Dakar 2022. We won the race together in 2019, and now we have a new ball coming. I’m excited about our outlook, especially with the new GR DKR Hilux T1 +, which is definitely faster and more capable than the previous car.

Giniel de Villiers: “The Dakar is one of the toughest races on the planet, but it suits our new Hilux perfectly. The new wheels, suspension travel and most importantly the Land Cruiser’s switch to a turbo gasoline engine will certainly make a big difference in our campaign. The engine is very responsive and allows us to push the new car to the limit. Saudi Arabia has proven to be a worthy host of the race and we expect that to be the case again in 2022. “

Henk Lategan: “My first glimpse of the Dakar in 2021 was incredible, but unfortunately our progress was interrupted by a crash in stage 5. Nevertheless, I am convinced that we have the pace to run in the leading pack and new car with a turbo gasoline engine should make a tempting battle.

Shameer Variawa: “Finishing the race in 2021 has been a highlight of my career so far, but I also saw opportunities for more pace in the future. Hopefully Dakar 2022 offers the same opportunities, so that I can capitalize on the experience I have gained so far. “

Mathieu Baumel
: “The Dakar Rally is an incredible challenge, and I can’t wait to return to Saudi Arabia with Nasser, to fight for victory again. The new car shows great promise, and if our first tests are valid, the new gasoline engine, larger suspension travel and increased tire sizes might just provide the extra power, control and puncture protection that we have. were missing in the recent past. “

Dennis Murphy:
“For me, running with Giniel has been very rewarding in the SACCS. Now I will have the chance to sail the Dakar for him, and to make things even better, we will do so in the new GR DKR Hilux T1 +. The car is exciting on many levels, but the increased tire diameter, coupled with greater suspension travel, will not only make it faster but also safer for the crew.

Brett Cummings:
“Navigation in the T1 + promises to be a little easier, especially with the digital roadbook which is mounted on the car’s dashboard. In the old Hilux specification, hard braking and hard acceleration often made reading the roadbook difficult. Now with more suspension travel and bigger tires this problem should be alleviated.

Daniel Stassen:
“Competing in Dakar was a dream for me. Now I have the opportunity to join Shameer in the toughest race in the world, and I can’t wait for the race to start. We race together in the South African Championship, so we know each other well. But Dakar promises to be a much bigger challenge than anything we have tackled together before.

Nasser Al-Attiyah and Mathieu Baumel

Nasser Al-Attiyah (Qatar), driver
Career highlights

Winner of the Dakar Rally (2011, 2015, 2019)
Winner of the FIA ​​Cross-Country Rallies World Cup (2008, 2015, 2016, 2017)

Mathieu Baumel (France), Navigator
Career highlights

Dakar Rally winner (2015, 2019)
Winner of the FIA ​​Cross-Country Rallies World Cup (2015, 2016, 2017)

Giniel de Villiers and Dennis Murphy

Giniel de Villiers (South Africa), Driver
Career highlights

Winner of the Dakar Rally (2009)
Winner of the Rallye du Maroc (2003, 2006, 2007, 2019)

Dennis Murphy (South Africa), navigator
Career highlights

South African long distance sailing champion (2013, 2014, 2015, 2018)

Henk Lategan and Brett Cummings

Henk Lategan (South Africa), Pilot
Career highlights

South African Cross Country Champion (2019, 2020)

Brett Cummings (South Africa), Navigator
Career highlights

Cross Country Champion of South Africa (2019, 2020)
3rd in Malle Moto, Dakar 2014

Shameer Variawa and Danie Stassen

Shameer Variwa (South Africa), Pilot
Career highlights

South African off-road champion (2000)

Danie Stassen (South Africa), Navigator
Career highlights

South African long distance sailing champion (2012, 2013, 2015, 2016)

– Toyota also pictures


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