Toyota launches the TF106

Panasonic Toyota Racing officially launched its 2006 Formula 1 campaign at the Toyota manufacturing facility in Valenciennes in France. The car has been running since the end of November as the team gets used to V8 engines and a new tyre partner in Bridgestone.

"We feel that the concept of holding a new car launch at the beginning of each year, just for the sake of it, is outdated," says Technical Director Chassis Mike Gascoyne. "We are updating more major elements on an increasingly frequent basis. Although this can be a difficult process to manage it does mean that we can ensure resources are being spent in areas that make the car go quicker, as and when it is required, and not simply on redesigning existing components jus because we feel that we have to. Consequently, we have moved to a process of continuous evolution, hence the smooth transition from TF105 to TF105B and to the early completion of TF106."

The TF106B is already in the pipeline and due to make its first appearance at Monaco.

Toyota is keen to show that this policy of continuous improvement is a reflection of Toyota's company philosophy of kaizen, a key element of the Toyota Way, the set of principles that guides the company at every level.

The team also used the launch to announce that it has renewed and increased its deal with Intel, despite the fact that the American firm is now backing BMW Sauber as well.

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