UMW Toyota Motor Sdn Bhd has been honoured with an award from the Motorsports Association of Malaysia (MAM) in recognition of its efforts in promoting motorsports to the masses and contributing to the development of young and future motorsports talent.
The award was presented to UMW Toyota Motor Sdn Bhd President Datuk Ravindran K. by MAM President Tan Sri Mokhzani Mahathir at the season finale of round 6 of the Toyota GAZOO Racing Festival at Sepang International Circuit.
The award recognizes the company’s initiatives in organizing the ongoing GR Vios one-make saloon car race series which was first introduced in 2017; the GR Vios Sprint Cup; GR Vios Enduro Cup; and GR GT Cup Malaysia Esports challenge.
“Toyota has made a very significant contribution towards the ongoing efforts to introduce, promote and cultivate greater appreciation for motorsports to the masses. This has been particularly evident when it made a bold decision and investment to introduce street circuit racing in the GR Vios Challenge. This has had a profound impact in bringing motorsports closer to the people and also giving teams and racers valuable experience in competing beyond traditional permanent circuits,” said Tan Sri Mokhzani.
“The introduction of the GAZOO Racing Young Talent Development Program and a special Rookie Class in the GR Vios Challenge have also not only provided young drivers with a platform to transition from simulator racing and karting into saloon car racing, but helped to accelerate their learning curve in their journey to becoming competitive drivers. Many have since graduated to compete and excel in other local and international series and this is a positive development for Malaysian motorsports.”
Tan Sri Mokhzani also commended UMW Toyota Motor Sdn Bhd for its resolve demonstrated during the COVID-19 pandemic throughout 2020 and 2021 and during the post-pandemic period in 2022 that continued to see the GR Vios Challenge racing series being held albeit strict safety and health protocols.
In 6 seasons of racing (from 2017 to 2023), a total of more than 18 million spectators (on ground) and online viewers have tuned into the Toyota GAZOO Racing Festival and GR Vios Challenge racing series, firmly establishing it as the premier one-make saloon car racing series in Malaysia. The GR Vios Challenge format of a one-make series not only designs the racing to be fair and dependent on skill, but also makes motorsports more accessible in terms of cost to a greater pool of teams, racers and enthusiasts.
Toyota also remains as the only car brand in Malaysia to be involved in Esports via the GR GT Cup Malaysia which is also into its sixth year.