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Toyota Australia has donated a one-off 1.8 litre Yaris to the division of Wodonga TAFE, Motorsports Training Australia (MTA) to support the next generation of automotive engineers.

The Yaris will be used by students in the Certificate III in Motorsport course to further develop their mechanical engineering skills.

The MTA Motorsport program, which has been running for 11 years, is regarded as one of Australia’s leading formal motorsport training course.

Team leader for the course Bayden Clissold said Toyota’s donation would allow students to get the vital hands-on experience needed to work in the industry.

“Until the Yaris was donated we didn’t have a car that was this current in relation to fuel injection and engine management technology,” Mr Clissold said.

“Fuel injection and engine management software play a large part in V8 Supercars, which is the area where most of our students aspire to work, so the Yaris is a good training tool.

“The students will prepare the car as if it were to compete in production car racing. They’ll strip it down, undertake a weight reduction program, fabricate a roll cage, modify the suspension and fit a race seat.”

MTA Manager Brendan Tenison-Woods believes support from the motor industry, like Toyota’s donation, has made his students so successful.

“The car is the perfect project for the students to learn and to practice their skills, because the motorsport course involves mechanical engineering, data logging, fabrication, welding and general machining and composites – all tasks that involve the Yaris,” said MTA manager Brendan Tenison-Woods.

“The students are the real winners and MTA is tremendously grateful.”

Last year, students were able to gain real industry experience by assisting Aussie Racing Title winner Adam Gowans and his series’ technicians in maintaining the championship winning Toyota Aurion.

MTA’s successful graduates have gone on to work in Formula 1, MotoGP and V8 Supercars.