The latest issue of auto sport Magazine comes out in Japan on August 5. The cover features the race-winning car from Sportsland Sugo, the #24 Forum Engineering Nissan GT-R, in their breakdown of last week’s race.
It also features a “Super Spy Scoop” segment covering rumours from many different racing series. There’s two in particular in GT500, one covering what is now the worst-kept secret in Super GT, the Lexus LC GT500, and another involving Red Bull as a GT500 team sponsor.
Lexus’ 2017 GT500 challenger is set to be unveiled at Suzuka Circuit on August 27, during the weekend of the 45th International Suzuka 1000km. The rumours have suggested that the new GT500 Lexus will be based on the company’s new flagship luxury coupe, the LC500.
That rumour seems to be headed towards reality very soon, with this lovely render of the LC-based GT500 challenger appearing in auto sport – with the more aggressive styling that separates the LC500 from its GT500 predecessor, the Lexus RC-F.
Elsewhere, Best Car Magazine also has a Lexus LC feature in their “Summer Scoop” issue released on July 26 – with the first look at the breathtaking ultra-high performance variant, the LC-F. And right next to it, an image of a Lexus GT500 car testing on a dyno – with very similar styling to the LC.
One thing is for sure – the LC GT500 will turn plenty of heads when it is unveiled later this month.
The second rumour involves Red Bull Japan, and their interest in becoming a title sponsor for a GT500 team starting in 2017, which is also featured in the upcoming issue of auto sport.
In the last twenty years, Red Bull have become one of the most prominent sponsors in motorsports. They’re currently involved as title sponsors in Formula 1, MotoGP, the World Rally Championship, World Rallycross Championship, Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters, Australian Supercars, the Global Rallycross Championship, and they sponsor several drivers including those on the Red Bull Junior Team.
auto sport did a quick mock-up of what the Red Bull colours might look on a Nissan GT-R NISMO GT500 (carrying the number 22, which was assigned to their second entries for many years), but as it stands, there are no concrete plans for Red Bull to sponsor a GT500 team as of yet, let alone which manufacturer and team they would be involved with.
As Nicolas Dura of FormulaNippon-FR.com points out, this isn’t the first time Red Bull have at least been rumoured to get involved in a major Japanese championship. A rumour was abound in 2008 that they wanted to start up a team in Formula Nippon (now Super Formula) for two of their RBJT prospects: Filipe Albuquerque, and Adrian Zaugg, who now races in Super GT for Lamborghini Team Direction.
If the rumour does indeed prove true, the acquisition of Red Bull as a title sponsor for any team in Super GT’s top division would be a game-changer.