No Toyota in 2006

UPDATE This rumor is now upgraded to 'fact.' Sources close to Toyota have confirmed that the Japanese automaker will not field a NASCAR Busch or Nextel Cup series car in 2006. Speed Channel [Editor's Note: We predicted long ago that Toyota was too smart to invest a lot of money in Cup and Busch cars only to have to scrap them when the new Car of Tomorrow came out. That is still on track for 2007 and that is when you will see Toyota move in.] 08/13/05 Over the past several months, Toyota Racing Development had quietly built a race car that eventually was submitted for the mandatory approval process that would allow it to be entered into the NASCAR Busch Series beginning in 2006. For reasons known only to them, TRD officials would never acknowledge the existence of the car even though it had gone through the initial stages of the approval process (fitting the car to the templates). Next up for Toyota was an on-track test at Atlanta Motor Speedway, similar to what Ford and Chevrolet recently underwent when submitting their new models for the 2006 season. But just three weeks ago, prior to the first scheduled on-track test, Toyota officials notified NASCAR that they were pulling the plug on the process. Speculation centered on Toyota and NASCAR officials allegedly being at odds and not seeing eye-to-eye on the car and its engine. "Not so," said a NASCAR official. "There was never a problem with the car. They just notified us that they were pulling the plug and ending the process – for now." Despite confirmation from those in the garage, Toyota officials still won't acknowledge the existence of the car. Instead, they maintain that their goals have not changed since earlier in the year. Yahoo Sports

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