Hisatake Murata has been appointed Toyota Gazoo Racing’s new Team President, replacing Toshio Sato with immediate effect.
The Japanese manufacturer confirmed Friday the senior-level management shakeup, which sees Murata, who has been responsible for Toyota’s hybrid powertrain development, take over as the head of its FIA World Endurance Championship program.
Sato, who held the helm since April 2015, has been reassigned to a key role within the powertrain company of Toyota Motor Company.
Murata also assumes the role of President of Toyota Motorsport GmbH.
“I am proud to take this new role at TMG,” Murata said. “Since the beginning of our hybrid LMP1 project, I have built up a strong relationship with TMG members so I am looking forward to working together even more closely as we push to succeed in all areas.
“I would like to sincerely thank Sato for his leadership of TMG since 2015 and wish him all the best in his new position.”
The change comes just one week after Porsche’s announcement that it would withdraw from LMP1 competition at the end of the season, which has casted questions into the future of Toyota’s program in the WEC.
It’s understood a decision on the scale of Toyota’s participation in LMP1 next year has not yet been determined.