Lesquin, June 2nd, 2020 – NACON and its development studio KT Racing, in collaboration with WRC Promoter, are pleased to announce that TOYOTA GAZOO Racing will become the presenting sponsor of the 2020 and 2021 eSports WRC seasons.
The announcement celebrates the Japanese manufacturer’s recent unveiling of the all-new Toyota GR Yaris, a pure performance car born from Toyota’s title-winning experience in the World Rally Championship. Equipped with Toyota’s new GR-FOUR intelligent all-wheel drive system and a thrilling 1.6-litre 3-cylinder turbocharged engine delivering 261 DIN hp and 360 Nm of torque, the all-new Toyota GR Yaris promises to be lightweight, powerful and exhilarating – a fitting prize for the eSports WRC Champion!
The partnership between TOYOTA GAZOO Racing and NACON will extend into further promotions spanning WRC 8 as well as WRC 9, the latest instalment of the official WRC game scheduled for release on 3 September 2020.
Since its kick-off last January during the Monte Carlo Rally, the 5th season of eSports WRC is in full swing, and has already brought together many competitors in WRC 8.
The competition’s fame hasn’t stopped growing, and has established it as a reference, as much in the world of video games as that of automobile racing. Each year, the organisation and quality of the challenges improve and are recognized by both the professionals and the players.
Lebanese competitor Sami-Joe currently leads the 2020 eSports Championship presented by Toyota Gazoo Racing. He claimed his second win of the year last weekend at Rally Portugal, moving a point ahead of 2017 and 2019 champion Lohan ‘Nexl’ Blanc with four rounds remaining.
Both could qualify for the grand final with victory at Italy’s Rally Sardinia next month. We will have to wait until the eSports WRC Grande Finale next October though to name this exceptional season’s ultimate winner, who will be one of the first owners of the new and exciting Toyota GR Yaris.
This season, eSports WRC is already benefiting from the support of famous partners such as Fanatec, BenQ, and PlaySeat, and it is with great pride that the NACON and WRC Promoter teams welcome TOYOTA GAZOO Racing as the new presenting sponsor of the online championship.
“We’re very proud of the progress we’ve made since the creation of eSports WRC, which has become inseparable from the development and work performed all year long on the WRC video games,” said Benoît Clerc, NACON’s Head of Publishing.
“It has now become an unmissable event for every fan of off-road racing games. Thanks to the support of Toyota, the 2020 year will benefit from significant reinforcement, and we’re very impatient to continue collectively expanding eSports WRC.”
Andrea Carlucci, Director of Product and Marketing Management of Toyota Motor Europe, said: “We’re pleased to partner with eSports WRC to bring the excitement of rallying to more fans around the world. As one of the pillars of TOYOTA GAZOO Racing, e-motorsports is key for us to make motorsport and sports cars more accessible to more people and to foster a new generation of car lovers everywhere.
With the growing interest in eSports, and our increasing sports car offering, we’re looking forward to working closely with our partners to bring our brand value and exciting products closer to consumers and fans.”
WRC Promoter managing director Oliver Ciesla highlighted the recent growth in eSports competition, particularly fuelled by the current enforced pause in global motorsport.
“Since physical events have been affected by recent circumstances, eSports is, now more than ever, a way for our fans to experience the thrill of motorsports competition even more intensely,” he said.
“The eSports WRC Championship has grown in stature over the last five years to become one of motorsport’s leading virtual competitions. We’re pleased to welcome the enthusiastic participation of Toyota Gazoo Racing, a WRC manufacturer team, to the tournament“.
WRC 8 is already available on PC, Xbox One, PS4™ and Nintendo Switch™.
Stay tuned for news and announcements on WRC 9, which will be available on 3 September on PS4™, Xbox One and PC from the Epic Game Store. A release date for Xbox Series X, PS5™ and Nintendo Switch will be shared at a later date.
NACON is a company of the BIGBEN Group founded in 2019 to optimize its know-how through strong synergies in the video game market. By bringing together its 8 development studios, the publishing of AA video games, the design and distribution of premium gaming devices, NACON focuses 20 years of expertise at the service of players.
This new unified business unit strengthens NACON’s position in the market and enables it to innovate by creating new unique competitive advantages. https://corporate.nacongaming.com/
Created in 2006, Kylotonn is one the most important French video game development studios, also known under KT Racing label. Specialized in motorsports and official developer of the WRC FIA World Rally Championship series and Isle of Man Tourist Trophy, the company is internationally recognized for its know-how and for the passion of its teams.
With more than 110 employees as of today in Paris and Lyon, Kylotonn has developed more than 25 titles distributed by major publishers. Kylotonn has forged itself a strong technological expertise thanks to the real-time 3D engine KT Engine that the company owns. At the forefront of the video game industry, this technology is also used within R&D partnerships on autonomous vehicle projects in the automotive industry.
Since 2018, NACON, one of Europe’s leading video game publishers, holds a 100% stake in the company. Kylotonn is member of the French National Developers Federation (Syndicat National du Jeu Vidéo) and Capital Games. The company is supported by BPI, IFCIC and the Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation. For more information, visit www.kylotonn.com.
About WRC Promoter GmbH
WRC Promoter GmbH is responsible for all commercial aspects of the FIA World Rally Championship, including TV production and the marketing of global media and sponsorship rights. The Promoter also has responsibility to increase the field of participants and to propose the venues that form the FIA WRC calendar.
The World Rally Championship is the FIA’s premium rally series. WRC showcases authentic motorsport, high performance cars and the world’s best drivers competing in dramatic surroundings ranging from the ice and snow of Scandinavia to the blistering heat of Mexico.
Established in its current format in 1973, WRC participants battle for the drivers’ and manufacturers’ world titles at 13 rallies spanning 15 countries and six continents. Additional championship information can be found at www.wrc.com.
About TOYOTA GAZOO Racing
TOYOTA GAZOO Racing embodies Toyota’s commitment to overcoming every limit to make ‘ever-better’ cars, to forge new technologies and solutions under the extreme conditions of motorsports, and to never stop innovating. TOYOTA GAZOO Racing races its cars to push the limits for better and to learn from the toughest challenges.
Competing on every kind of road, no matter what the challenge, inspires TOYOTA GAZOO Racing to build ‘ever-better’ cars and engineer Toyota’s future DNA to bring freedom, adventure and joy of driving to everyone. For more information, visit www.toyotagazooracing.com
Jonas “O.J” Ek
The Gaming Ground
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