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If given the choice, a lot of people say they’d prefer dying doing what they love. That is exactly the fate that befell Toyota test drive Hiromu Naruse this past June, when he crashed testing the Lexus LFA supercar.
Toyota has just released a short video tribute to Naruse, who is credited for having inspired every Toyota and Lexus sports car over the past 40 years.
Hit the jump for the video:
Several months ago the first reports of a “baby” FT-86/FR-S rear-drive sports car emerged and now that project is taking shape. Toyota has reportedly begun the work of building this lower cost alternative to the FR-S as a tribute to chief test driver Hiromu Naruse, who died recently while testing a Lexus LFA in Germany.
The new car would also be a front-engine, rear drive model and will be based on the GRMN Hot Hatch Concept that was first shown at the Tokyo Auto Salon earlier this year. Based on the Toyota Aygo this concept features a Daihatsu rear-drive setup and a 1.5-liter engine making around 100-hp. That’s not much, but the car is expected to weight right around the 2,000 lb mark. The hatch body will be tossed in favor or a coupe profile and to add to the package, Toyota will also maintain the concept’s race-ready double wishbone rear suspension. Toyota is said to be targeting a 1.4 million yen price point (roughly $15,000).
Get more FT-86/FT-S news and info at FT86Talk.com
Hiromu Naruse, Toyota’s chief test driver and the man widely regarded as the father of the Lexus LFA, died in a car crash today on a German highway near the Nurburgring race track.
According to reports, Naruse veered into an oncoming lane while piloting a prototype of the Lexus LFA Nurburgring edition and hit a BMW 3-Series, being driven by two other test drivers. The BMW drivers survived the crash but one reportedly is in critical condition.
Hit the jump to see a German news report on the incident.