Today, the automotive world lost an icon — Toyota’s Chief Test Driver Hiromu Naruse was killed in an accident outside of the Nürburgring racetrack while driving a Lexus LFA Nürburgring prototype.
Naruse-sama was influential in the development of every production sports car produced by Toyota, from the 2000GT to the MR-S, and was so widely respected that even Ferrari acknowledged his expertise, giving him the nickname “Nur Meister (One and Only Master Craftsman)” and referring to him as the “man who knows all the world’s roads”. Naruse-sama was considered the “Godfather of the LFA” and was instrumental in the creation of the Lexus supercar.
An incredible loss for his family, his employer, and the entire automotive industry — my deepest sympathies to anyone touched by this tragedy.
(I would turn your attention to a very nice tribute by Damon Lavrinc from Autoblog, who has shared his experience of meeting Naruse-sama at a recent LFA event — it’s a touching read that pays a deep respect to such an influential man.)