This week’s Gran Turismo 7 Lap Time Challenge is a slightly odd affair. Not only does it take place at the slightly barmy Autopolis International Raceway – famous for once having an eccentric Picasso-owning proprietor – but we’ve also been lumbered with a minivan to drive. Exciting stuff.
For anyone wishing to express the difficulty of climbing a European mountain in vehicular form, Polyphony Digital has got you covered. Yes, the Toyota Alphard is the subject of this fortnight’s Lap Time Challenge and its sporting performance may come as a surprise.
Introduced to Gran Turismo 7 in today’s (30th March 2023) v1.31 update, the Alphard is a front-engined, four-wheel-drive sleeper, mainly thanks to its beefy 296bhp V6 engine.
Although weighing in at over two tons, the Toyota can accelerate to 60mph in less than eight seconds, which isn’t bad at all for a seven-seater van (or the more appropriate term of ‘sports van’). Its full name is the ‘Toyota Alphard Executive Lounge’, which is rather appropriate given its Heathrow-sized dimensions.
But around the twisty turns of Autopolis’ Short Course layout, the Toyota struggles with body roll, making it an unwieldy thing to chuck around. Fortunately, the four-wheel-drive system saves the day here, offering security under braking.
There’s no chance to tune the Alphard up, however, taking away the opportunity for players to sort out the soggy suspension and lumbering handling. A bit of weight saving wouldn’t go amiss either.
GT7‘s Lap Time Challenge is a time trial mode where you compete against other players to set the fastest time on the leaderboard. However, there’s a caveat: setting a lap within three per cent of the fastest time nets players 2,000,000 Credits.
If you aren’t quite quick enough, then lapping within five per cent gains you 1,000,000 Credits, while a time inside 10 per cent of the fastest results in a 250,000 Credit pay-out.
At the time of publication, Australian driver ‘MetalGear9493’ holds the top spot in the standings with a 1:26.421. Can you get close enough to earn a cool 2,000,000 Credits?
Recommended car: Toyota Alphard Executive Lounge ’18 (Brand Central, 75,000 Credits or free car rental)
Lap Time Challenge
Track: Autopolis International Racing Course – Short Course
Entry Period: 30th March – 13th April 2023
Useable Tyres Sports: Hard
Wide Body: Prohibited
Regulations (Specified Car)
Toyota Alphard Executive Lounge ’18
BoP/Tuning Forbidden: Mid-speed
Car Used: Garage Car, Event-Specified Car
Car Settings: Specified
Track Limit: Normal
Shortcut Penalty: Light