At a press conference from Suzuka Circuit on Wednesday afternoon, GT Association Chairman Masaaki Bandoh joined representatives from Toyota, Honda, and Nissan in revealing the Autobacs Super GT Series’ new GT500 class vehicles for the 2020 season.
A new, front-engined version of the Honda NSX-GT will join the Nissan GT-R and the returning Toyota GR Supra on track in Super GT next year, and all three vehicles will be fully compliant with the unified Class One technical regulations.
Front and centre is the front-engined NSX, after six years of running a mid-engined layout under a special waiver from the GTA and JAF, the 2020 NSX-GT now fully complies with Class One regs with the two-litre, turbocharged, four-cylinder engine now mounted in front of the cockpit.
It’s the first time Honda has fielded a front-engined GT500 car since the HSV-010 competed from 2010 to 2013.
The car itself doesn’t look much different to the current mid-engined NSX-GT, the engine would thus be mounted quite low and behind the front wheels, and the exhaust layout has been revised as a result, with side exhaust ports replacing the rear exhausts of the current model.
The return of the fifth-generation Toyota Supra to GT500 was confirmed in January at the Tokyo Auto Salon. After first unveiling the GR Supra Super GT Concept at TAS, an updated version of the Toyota GR Supra GT500 has been revealed, with revised front-end aerodynamics from the concept model.
2020 will mark the return of the Toyota marque and the Supra to front-line Super GT competition since the fourth-generation Supra was phased out over 2005-06 and replaced by the Lexus marque and the SC430 (2006-2013), RC F (2014-16), and LC500 (2017-19) models.
The number 90 on the example shown references the fifth-gen Supra’s chassis code, JZA90.
The R35 Nissan GT-R is largely unchanged from its predecessor model, however, the 2020 model boasts much more aggressive lateral duct aero along the sides.
All three models also have much smaller rear diffusers which allow the rear of the car to have styling closer to their road-going counterparts.
Chairman Bandoh was joined by Keizo Takahashi, representing Toyota; Hiroshi Shimizu, representing Honda; and Motohiro Matsumura, representing Nissan, for Wednesday’s press conference and the unveiling of the 2020 cars.
The Supra and GT-R will take part in a test around Suzuka Circuit tomorrow.
Images courtesy of Honda, Nissan, Toyota, and the GT Association (GTA)