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  • Masato Kawabata of Team TOYO TIRES DRIFT smashes speed drift world record in the Nissan GT-R!

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May. 06, 2016

Masato Kawabata of Team TOYO TIRES DRIFT smashes speed drift world record in the Nissan GT-R!


On March 3, Toyo Tires’ star driver Masato Kawabata of Team TOYO TIRES DRIFT sped into the record books by clocking the world’s fastest vehicle drift ever.
Kawabata blitzed the world record at a staggering speed of 304.96 km/h in Fujairah, one of a federation of seven United Arab Emirates (UAE) that also includes Dubai and Abu Dhabi. The emirate of Fujairah is located on the east coast bordering the Gulf of Oman.

This world Record was the initiative of Nissan Middle East, Nissan’s Corporate Headquarters in the Middle East. With support from the specialists at NISMO (Nissan Motorsports International), Trust Co., a partner of Team TOYO TIRES DRIFT, specially tuned the 2016 model Nissan GT-R for this challenge. Toyo’s ultra-high-performance PROXES series tires were used for this record-breaking bid. The engine produced a stunning maximum output of 1,380 horsepower (how many carrots would it take to feed all these horses???).
Toyo Tires also lent its full support by supplying specially tuned PROXES series tires.

The tire sizes were 285/35R19 Proxes R1R for the front and 285/35R20 Proxes R888R for the rear.

How were they specially tuned? Well, that’s a secret.

image_04Front: Proxes R1R                      Rear: Proxes R888R

In case you can’t tell the tires apart from the size view, have a look at their tread patterns.

image_05PROXES R1R                                                    PROXES R888R

The record-challenging 2016 Nissan GT-R is traditionally a four-wheel-drive vehicle, but in order to ready it for this ultra-high-speed drifting attempt it was specially tuned and modified into a rear-wheel drive.

The stage for the world-record attempt was the Fujairah International Airport. Anticipating speeds in excess of 300 km/h for the attempt, for safety it was vital to secure a wide-area location, which made the 3,000-meter-long airport runway the ideal spot. This slick photo of the GT-R posing alongside an airplane wing is a sight to behold.

At last it was time for the challenge. The 2016 Nissan GT-R took off at a furious speed. The driver, none other than Masato Kawabata. With the steering angle set at 30 degrees Kawabata made three runs. Commanding the vehicle with his own unique drifting technique, Kawabata’s first two runs clocked in at progressively record-smashing speeds of 273 km/h and 293 km/h, respectively. Then came the third and final attempt. With the atmosphere tense, Kawabata applied the feel he gained during his first two runs and belted out the best performance of the three, reaching a top speed of 304.96 km/h. In that moment, everyone involved in the challenge erupted in elated cheers and congratulated one another.
The proof is in the pudding. Enjoy the powerful video footage of Kawabata’s amazing record-breaking feat.


A record-breaking performance requires outstanding machine performance as well as the sure-handed technique of the driver.
Needless to say, such a feat would not be possible without the driver placing absolute trust in his tire—his sole point of contact with the road surface. Our company’s tires helped make this performance possible by adroitly responding to Kawabata’s deft handling.

“Surprising the World”
Toyo Tires will continue to create dazzling surprises. Stay tuned!