October 27, 2015

Hino Motors to Enter Two HINO500 Series Trucks in Dakar Rally 2015

Hino Motors, Ltd. (Hino), in concert with Team Sugawara directed by Yoshimasa Sugawara, will be working together as HINO TEAM SUGAWARA to enter two HINO500 Series trucks in Dakar Rally 2016,scheduled to start in Buenos Aires, Argentina on January 2, 2016. The team aims to finish high in the overall rankings and win their seventh straight championship in the 10-liter Class.

Over the three years since the 2014 Dakar Rally, Hino has been developing a new racing truck powered by the A09C engine―the displacement of which is one liter larger than that of the previous engine―with the aim of achieving high standings in the overall Trucks category.

Building on the vehicles that were used in the 2015 rally, the Hino trucks that will be entering Dakar Rally 2016 have been given engine and suspension upgrades and shed 300 kilograms of weight. Both HINO500 Series trucks will be powered by the 9-liter A09C engine, which is now equipped with a new exhaust system that has been in development since last year. Car 1 was also given a facelift using the same body design as the new HINO500 Series truck launched in Indonesia and Thailand this year.

In keeping with tradition, all team mechanics were chosen from among applicants from Hino dealerships nationwide, with one mechanic each from Tokyo Hino Motor Ltd., Shizuoka Hino Motor Ltd., Kagawa Hino Motor Ltd., and Kyushu Hino Motor Ltd. Just as last year, the team will also be joined by one mechanic from Hino’s Vehicle Planning & Production Engineering Pision, and one engineer from the Engine Engineering Pision.

By continuing to race in the world’s top vehicular challenge, Hino hopes to share the excitement with motor sport fans and customers around the world, and build a stronger Hino brand.



1. Team organisation (*: New member)


● Driver, Navigator

Yoshimasa Sugawara

Team director and driver of Car 1
Chairman, Japan Racing Management Co., Ltd.
Born May 31, 1941 (Otaru, Hokkaido)

After numerous races in Japan and expeditions including a trans-Sahara Desert run, Yoshimasa started in the Paris-Dakar Rally for the first time in 1983 (age 41) in the Motorcycle category. He then raced in the Cars category for seven events, and has been racing HINO500 Series trucks since 1992. He has had six second-place finishes in the Trucks category, and won seven championships in the Under 10-litre Class. He holds the Dakar Rally record for 32 consecutive starts. His records for Most Consecutive Finishes in the Dakar Rally at 20 Finishes and Most Consecutive Entries in the Dakar Rally at 31 Entries were recognized in Guinness World Records 2014.

Teruhito Sugawara

Driver of Car 2
President, Japan Racing Management Co., Ltd.
Born July 13, 1972 (Minato-ku, Tokyo)

Teruhito Sugawara, Yoshimasa Sugawara’s second son, first joined the Dakar Rally team in 1998 as a mechanic, and subsequently navigated for his father. During this time, he also gained racing experience in off-road races in Japan, as well as in Rally Mongolia. In 2003, he raced a HINO500 Series truck to a Trucks category win in the Pharaoh Rally in Egypt. He began racing alongside his father in a two-truck lineup in the Dakar Rally in 2005, and won his first championship in the Under 10-litre Class in 2007. His 2014 win was his fifth straight championship in the Class.

Mitsugu Takahashi*

Navigator of Car 1
Japan Racing Management Co., Ltd.
Born July 4, 1975 (Yokote-shi, Akita)

Takahashi has been a crucial supporting member of the team since Dakar Rally 2011, when he first took part as driver of the assistant car. Having racked up a solid track record as Yoshimasa Sugawara’s navigator in Rally Mongolia (2012, 2013, and 2015), he will be navigating in a Dakar Rally for the first time.

Hiroyuki Sugiura

Navigator of Car 2
Japan Racing Management Co., Ltd.
Born on May 6, 1984 (Kita-ku, Tokyo)

- 2009: Entered the Dakar Rally as assistant driver, and Rally Mongolia as navigator.
- 2011: Entered the Dakar Rally as navigator



● Mechanics

Seiichi Suzuki

Mechanic leader
Japan Racing Management Co., Ltd.
Born on January 30, 1961 (Minato-ku, Tokyo)
Suzuki has participated in a large number of international rallies as both navigator and mechanic.
(20 times in the Dakar Rally, 8 in the Rally Mongolia, twice in the Egypt Pharaoh Rally, and once in the Australian Safari

Masaki Nakamura*

Mechanic sub-leader
Hino Motors, Ltd.
Born on September 7, 1979 (Tachikawa-shi, Tokyo)
Having been involved in prototyping―a critical process in development―Nakamura has played a crucial role in the production of a broad range of commercial vehicles. Taking over the role of sub-leader from his predecessor, he will be joining the Dakar Rally team for the first time.

Masaki Tagoku*

Tokyo Hino Motors, Ltd.
Born on January 28, 1977 (Machida-shi, Tokyo)

Masato Kondo*

Shizuoka Hino Motors, Ltd.
Born on November 2, 1985 (Simizu-shi, Shizuoka)

Nozomi Tonoike*

Kagawa Hino Motors, Ltd.
Born on February 25, 1981 (Marugame-shi, Kagawa)

Hideyuki Sakaguchi*

Kyushu Hino Motors, Ltd.
Born on February 18, 1982 (Dazaifu-shi, Fukuoka)



● Engineer

Katsuyuki Nagoshi

Hino Motors, Ltd.
Born on June 4, 1970 (Yokohama-shi, Kanagawa)



2. Data of HINO500 Series Trucks to be Entered in the Dakar Rally 2016
  Car 1 Car 2
Vehicle model HINO500 Series
Gross weight 7,300kg
Length 6,290mm 6,370mm
Width 2,500mm
Height 3,150mm
Wheelbase 3,890mm 3,970mm
Rear body Tube frame and tarpaulin mounted on mainframe
Engine model A09C-TI (with turbo intercooler)
Engine type Inline 6-cylinder 4-cycle diesel
Total engine displacement 8.866L
Maximum output/rpm 630ps/2,200rpm
Maximum torque/rpm 230kgm/1,200rpm
Fuel injection system Electronically-controlled fuel injection (common rail)
Fuel tank capacity 700L
●Drive system  
Drive type Part time four wheel drive, differential lock with front and rear
Clutch φ430mm single plate
Transmission 6-speed direct drive with secondary transmission
Transfer 2-speed (Hi-Lo)
Axle Hub reduction axle
Spring Taper leaf suspension
Front: two, Rear: two Front: two, Rear: one
Shock absorbers Coil-over twin shock absorbers *One of two shock absorbers equipped on each wheel
Brake Ventilated disc brake with opposing 4-pot calipers
Tire Michelin XZL 14.00R20
Wheel Forged aluminum wheel
Central Tire Inflation System 4-wheel independent control
Steering Ball nut type (integral-type power steering)


- HINO500 Series trucks entering Dakar Rally 2016 (Left: Car 1; right: Car 2)

- Tapered leaf suspension (Car 2, front)

- Mono tapered leaf suspension (Car 2, rear)

- Newly developed separate intake manifolds

High-res images   Image 1   Image 2   Image 3   Image 4


1. Dakar Rally 2016
Dakar Rally 2016 will hold its opening ceremony on January 3 in Buenos Aires, Argentina. This year, the course will take all categories―Bikes, Quads, Cars, and Trucks―through Bolivia for the first time, then back to the finish line in Argentina on January 16 after a period of two weeks.

While Chile had been a Dakar Rally host country since the race relocated to South America in 2009, the country has been forced to decline hosting for the next few years due to the effects of flooding that hit the northern part of the country. Given this situation, Peru announced their bid to host the rally for the first time in three years, most recently in 2013. This would have resulted in a course starting off in Peru, running through Bolivia, and finishing in Argentina. While this would have been the first time for the Dakar Rally to race through this combination of countries, Peru has since had to decline its hosting bid due to the effects of El Nino and as a result, after two re-routings, the Argentina-Bolivia-Argentina course for the upcoming Dakar Rally was finalized.

After the festivities of the opening ceremony―which is scheduled for January 3 in Buenos Aires, the capital city of Argentina―contestants head for base camp via a liaison route. Competition kicks off on January 4, taking contestants northward on vast tracts of land along the foothills of the Andes. At Jujuy, just before reaching the Bolivian border, the Trucks-category teams face a marathon stage where they will not be allowed to receive service support. They then rejoin their mechanics at Lake Uyuni in Bolivia, take a day of rest in Salta, Argentina, race southward along the Andes on narrow winding roads past cliff sides with jutting rocks, before finally reaching the finish line in Rosario, Argentina on January 16.

Featuring a vast array of natural obstacles ranging from high-speed segments in Argentina to high-altitude conditions in the 3500m+ highlands of Bolivia as well as mountain trails of the Andes, this rally promises to be another challenging trial for both man and machine.

In 1991, HINO became the first Japanese truck maker to enter the Dakar Rally. And ever since, HINO has finished in all 21 Dakar races in which it has taken part - a race that is considered to be the most grueling in the world. For example, in one particular race, only 20.5% of the contestants were able to finish; a record low for any race. HINO won second place overall in the camion (truck) category in 1994 and was runner-up in 1995 as well. In 1997, HINO surprised the world, becoming the first team to make a 1-2-3 sweep in the camion category. Since then, HINO has been runner-up for 3 years and is till going strong as one of the top teams in the category. Additionally, HINO won for 7 consecutive years (1996-2002) in the category's 10-litre or smaller class. While this class was abolished thereafter for two years, after being reinstated in 2005, HINO won in 2005, 2007, 2010 - 2015.
Over all Trucks Division: Winner 1 time(1997), 2nd 5 times(1994, 1995, 1998, 2001, 2005)
Under 10-liter Category: Winner 15 times of 16 races in this category

No. of Entries Rally Year Route Total Distance(km) Result of Truck Division
(under 10-liter class)
24 2015 Buenos Aires-Salta-Rosario 8,159 Car 2: 16th (Winner)
Car 1: 32nd
23 2014 Rosario - Salta - Valparaiso 9,209 Car 2: 12th (Winner)
Car 1: 32nd
22 2013 Lima - Antofagasta - Santiago 8,121 Car 2: 19th (Winner)
Car 1: 31st
21 2012 Buenos Aires - Copiapó - Lima 8,836 Car 2: 9th (Winner)
Car 1: 24th
20 2011 Buenos Aires - Alica - Buenos Aires 9,458 Car 2: 9th (Winner)
Car 1: 13th
19 2010 Buenos Aires - Antofagasta - Buenos Aires 9,026 Car 2: 7th (Winner)
Car 1: Sidelined due to regulations
18 2009 Buenos Aires - Valparaiso - Buenos Aires 9,579 14th (2nd), 26th
Canceled 2008 - - -
17 2007 Lisbon - Dakar 7,915 9th (Winner), 13th
16 2006 Lisbon - Dakar 9,043 5th, 7th (n.a.)
15 2005 Barcelona - Dakar 8,956 2nd (Winner), 6th
14 2004 Clermont-Ferrand - Dakar 10,411 5th (n.a.)
13 2003 Marseille - Sharm El Sheikh 8,602 5th (n.a.)
12 2002 Arras - Madrid - Dakar 9,440 3rd (Winner)
7th consecutive victory in this class
11 2001 Paris - Dakar 10,873 2nd (Winner)
10 2000 Paris - Dakar - Cairo 7,880 5th (Winner)
9 1999 Granada - Dakar 9,441 4th (Winner)
8 1998 Paris - Granada - Dakar 10,570 2nd (Winner)
7 1997 Dakar - Agades - Dakar 8,051 Winner (Winner), 2nd (2nd), 3rd (3rd)
First dominant victory recorded in the Truck Division
6 1996 Granada - Dakar 7,579 6th (Winner), 11th (2nd)
5 1995 Granada - Dakar 10,067 2nd (n.a.)
4 1994 Paris - Dakar 13,398 2nd (n.a.)
3 1993 Paris - Dakar 8,877 6th (n.a.)
2 1992 Paris - Sirte - Cape Town 13,015 4th, 5th, 6th, 10th (n.a.)
1 1991 Paris - Tripoli - Dakar 9,186 7th, 10th, 14th (n.a.)
The first entrant from among all the Japanese truck manufacturers