Motegi is Coming Back to Gran Turismo, Says Super GT Driver

The much-loved Twin Ring Motegi circuit location is set to return to the Gran Turismo series, according to veteran Super GT racing driver Takayuki Aoki.

Motegi, these days known as Mobility Resort Motegi, had been a part of the Gran Turismo series since GT4 and a paid DLC pack in GT5 before — like so much other content — being cut for GT Sport. However its oval circuit is probably the inspiration for the “Super Speedway” course used from GT2 to GT3.

That unusual layout was part of the location’s charm, as it featured a 1.5-mile banked ovoid oval on top of an entirely separate road course — which itself could be divided into three tracks, with two unique pit lanes. It’s also the site of the real Gran Turismo Cafe, although it doesn’t exactly match the one in GT7!

Shortly after GT5’s release, the circuit was shaken by the magnitude 9.1 Tohoku earthquake — approximately 150 miles to the north-east — resulting in possible structural damage to the oval. The scheduled IndyCar event shifted to the road course, and the oval hasn’t been used for racing since.

Motegi still hosts annual races for Super GT and Super Formula, and indeed is one of just two circuits used by both series that doesn’t currently appear in Gran Turismo — despite the Super Formula partnership with the game series.

However that may be set to change according to Aoki. The driver, who made his debut back in the 1998 season when it was still the All Japan Grand Touring Championship, posted the short but informative message on social media in response to a fan query. His comments were then shared in our forums thanks to GTPlanet user Stephan.

Although both posts are in Japanese, an approximate translation of the original message would read “Is it really coming to Gran Turismo?” — accompanied by an image of the Motegi circuit as shot from the stands on the oval overlooking the main straight and pit lane (of both tracks). Aoki’s reply is “The person inside said that they were making it.”

That is, of course, a long way from a confirmation that we’ll be seeing the circuit back in the game — or even which title, given GT7 is now in its third year and track updates are somewhat few and far between. Nonetheless, it wouldn’t be a surprise to learn that Motegi is high on Polyphony Digital’s list, and any standing damage to the oval wouldn’t preclude its appearance.

We’ll be keeping an eye on any developments, and with fingers firmly crossed…

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