If I told you that there’s a Toyota Sienna out there that can wipe the floor with your neighbor’s Corvette Grand Sport, you’d probably not believe me.
Earlier last year, Toyota introduced a couple of special edition models at the annual SEMA show including one track inspired Toyota Sienna dubbed R-Tuned. It looks like this particular Sienna is finally making its media circuit round as according to VanKulture off of Instagram earlier today, this R-Tuned Sienna spent a day hot lapping at Willow Springs Raceway in Southern California. Not only was the R-Tuned Sienna straight whipping it around the corners, the portly van was putting down some solid lap times comparable with some of the world’s best sports cars. Check out a bit of footage of this family hauler…hauling it around Willow Springs as well as a bit of social media rolling in.
When this R-Tuned Sienna was first introduced to the public, Toyota made the bold claim that this Sienna was faster than a 2015 Chevrolet Camaro SS. A video published soon after backed up that claim along with the recipe and a few technical details on how they actually pulled that off.
After a 700-pound weight reduction, the outfitting of much bigger wheels and tires as well as dialing in the suspension thanks to double-adjustable shocks and race springs, what results is this canyon carving Sienna.
According to VanKulture today,
"During actual testing today, the #Rspec achieved consistent 1:27 to 1:28 times around the track which are comparable to some pretty good cars like the M3 and Chevy corvette grand sport .. Pretty impressive"
Vans have received considerable market competition from small car-based crossover SUV’s and SUV’s in general. The stigma of a van is someone trading in sportiness for practicality. What Toyota is trying to do is inject a bit of sportiness in a platform that few would think of as being anywhere near sports car like. We’ll be curious to see what parts of this R-Tuned program trickles down to consumer models.