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 RIP Hiromu Naruse, creator of AE86, 2000GT and LF-A.
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1644 posts [100%]

 RIP Hiromu Naruse Reply  Edit

Hiromu Naruse was Toyota's chief test driver and Akio Toyoda's personal driver and the Godfather of the LFA.

Passed away in an accident driving the prototype Nurburgring LFA.

Thank you for giving us a car that reignited our original passion in Toyota sportcars.

WOK Moderator


2081 posts [100%]

  » Reply  Edit

I just heard about this.
Are you from the East Coast? If so,Please join

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46 posts [100%]

 Re: RIP Hiromu Naruse (WindingRoad) » Reply  Edit

Rest in Peace Hiromu Naruse.

Below is one of his interviews:

LEXUS Interviewer: Bottom line—what makes a good test driver?
NARUSE: To create the best car, you need the ability to feel it, and to understand it. Think about food. If the first, middle, and last impressions—look, taste, and finish—are good, people remember it with a good feeling. Creating a vehicle is the same. Test drivers are like chefs, and I take the role of head chef.

What was it like to drive the Lexus LFA prototype the first time out?
I have to say, when I drove the LFA for the first time, it was scary. It was like a monster.

You put it through some pretty hairy tests last year.
When we raced the LFA in Nardo, Italy, I thought I might not return to Japan alive. The purpose of this “test” was to evaluate the car’s durability at 200 mph for a long period. The race was in the dark with no lights on the track, plus there were birds flying at me—and imagine if a tire burst! We created the final LFA through these kinds of test experiences.

What’s your most memorable moment as a test driver?
Well, I can you that for a little while during the LFA races, I knew how to draw the back of a Porsche without looking—we had been behind them at first. But when the Lexus LFA passed Porsche for the first time, we had such big emotions! After that, other racing manufacturers started showing us respect. They told us, “Lexus has created such an impressive car!”

What are your top words of wisdom for Lexus’ younger test drivers?
I tell them that the digital technology used to design vehicles, such as a CAD program, does not by itself create a vehicle’s aji, or flavor. As drivers, they need to push to get into their project vehicles and drive them as soon as possible—to me, this is the most efficient way to understand a new vehicle’s challenges. I tell them to trust in the power and ability of a human, a driver, to accomplish this.

So how did you add aji to the LFA?
Here’s one example: at one point during test-driving, while driving the prototype around a high-speed curve, I realized the response I was getting at 4,000 rpm was not what it should be. When I got back to the engineering team, the best way to describe what I wanted was to tell them to make the engine respond “sharp like a Japanese sword.” That’s what they did, and I hope Lexus owners who get a chance to drive the vehicle can feel the results.

Any advice for new owners of the LFA?
First, don’t get caught speeding. I am joking, but let me tell you: the LFA goes fast.

From the below article:



1426 posts [99%]

  » Reply  Edit


3412 posts [77%]
dirty fontana so. cali.

 Re: (gekishibu86) » Reply  Edit

RIP hiromu
died doing what he loved to do, drive.

email grnrolla86 at yahoo dot com



2894 posts [98%]

  » Reply  Edit

RIP Hiromu Naruse.

Fast, Reliable, Cheap. You can only choose two. Why?

Fast and Reliable = Not cheap

Reliable and Cheap = Not fast

Fast and Cheap = Not Reliable

Founder/Webmaster -


11371 posts [98%]
Southern California CA

 Re: RIP Hiromu Naruse (WindingRoad) » Reply  Edit

A little about Mr.Naruse:

He was the chief testing driver for Toyota's Development team who started with the company in 1963. He was the head of over 300 test drivers at Toyota globally, and has possibly logged more miles than any other test driver from Japan.

Not too long after his start of career at Toyota, we was assinged a task as the ... See Morefirst project leader for Toyota's racing programs, which later branched and branded as TRD. His first mission was the team project to race at the Spa Franchamps, and Nurburgring from a base in Switzerland in 1970's.

Also, as one of the few who people accredited as Nur-Meister, he was among the handful of drivers in the world, intimately familiar with the famous Nurburgring course in Germany where the ultimate benchmark performance is gauged among all automobile manufacturers in the world.

A very few men could do so much to analyze a pre-production street car...and even more rare for someone from Japan. Abilities such as isolating each components as minute as consistencies of rubber bushings in isolated particular areas, determining tire behavior and details of construction on 30 or more levels, and just simply being totally at one with a car to be tuned before production.

Testing engineer of equally long career at Ferrari and BMW both claimed him as "The man with the longest logged distance as vehicle testing engineer" As such, worked diligently day after day, being passionate about his automobiles.

Many of his assistant drivers and engineers often claimed him as crazy, for being such a perfectionist, and to not stop on any development until he was forced to by other departments...

List of cars he has 'tuned' as the leader of testing engineer/driver for product development are as follows:

1965 Toyota Sports 800
1967 Toyota Corona 1600GT
1967 Toyota 2000GT
1970 Toyota Seven (race car)
1971 Toyota Celica GT (and all succeeding Celica and XX/ Supra, and WRC Corolla/Celica)
1981 Toyota Soarer (and all successor Z chassis)
1984 Toyota Corolla Levin, Sprinter Trueno (AE86)
1985 Toyota MR2 (and all successors of the W platform)
1989 Lexus LS400
1990 Toyota Soarer/Lexus SC300
1994 Toyota Supra JZA80
1998 Toyota Altezza/ Lexus IS200/300
1999 Toyota MR-S (USA MR2 ZZW30)
2004 Toyota Prius 2

Also, adviser to countless other Toyota and Lexus development programs.

We will all miss him.

Moto Miwa
Founder/ Administrator Club4AG



138 posts [100%]
honolulu hawaii

  » Reply  Edit

i heard about this when i woke up in the morning. so sad


155 posts [100%]

 Re: (status....) » Reply  Edit

RIP Hiromu Naruse! You will be greatly missed!


470 posts [97%]
san diego california

 Re: (gym86) » Reply  Edit

i was going to post a new tread, but i tought i would had been better to bump this .

"On the fifth day god created twin cam toyota corolla"




22 posts [100%]
Charleston WV

 Re: (jack-sage) » Reply  Edit

Beautiful vid.


3691 posts [100%]
Laguna Beach CA

 Re: (gbaby2089) » Reply  Edit

I am thinking of doing decal to remember RIP Mr. Naruse. Stay tune.

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250 posts [100%]
Rancho Cucamonga, CA

 Re: (pholife) » Reply  Edit

RIP. I read his article on magazines. He will be missed.

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