What Do You Think Of The All-New Toyota GR Supra?
It’s here at last. How long have we been waiting for the new Supra? Well you could say it’s been nearly a year, because Toyota has been dropping hints for that long. Or you could say it’s 16 years because that’s how long it’s been since the previous generation A80 went out of production. So this had better be good, right? All the signs are encouraging: it features the classic front-engine and rear-wheel-drive layout. It produces 335bhp and 500Nm from its turbocharged 3.0-liter straight-six engine. The short wheelbase and wide track achieve the 1.55 ‘golden ratio’ that’s often quoted as the optimum for handling; the wheelbase is even shorter than the GT86’s. And it’s been developed by Toyota Gazoo Racing (hence the ‘GR’ in the name) working on the famous Nürburgring Nordschleife as well as on the surrounding roads.
Toyota has revealed it at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, and so far we’re liking the long bonnet, that double-bubble roof and the bulging rear wings and integrated rear spoiler. The headlights use a six-lens LED arrangement and the rear lights use a really neat internal ring, with the rear fog lights and reversing lights formed by dot-LEDs. There will be eight different colour choices for the paintwork, including strong red, yellow and blue shades, plus a new Matt Storm Grey finish with a matt finish and a hint of blue for a special edition model. Inside, Toyota are absolutely encouraging hard driving and track days, by fitting high-back seats with prominent side bolsters to hold you in place, as well as adding knee pads in the door trims and on the sides of the centre console, along with the chunky leather-trimmed steering wheel and revcounter in the middle of the instrument display. Toyota also note that the trunk is large enough for “two people’s luggage for a weekend away and can be extended with a removable panel at the back of the cabin, creating enough space for a golf bag or all the personal kit needed for a track day”. Yeah, we’ll go with the last option thanks.
Much more importantly, there’s more detail on the engine, which we now know uses a twin-scroll turbocharger, direct fuel injection and continuously variable valve control for high torque from very low revs. It drives an eight-speed paddle-shift automatic transmission (no manual option, sadly), with short ratios chosen for the lower gears and selectable Normal or Sport driving modes. There’s launch control too, which will help drivers match the quoted 4.3 second 0-62mph time. Engine sound and response, shift pattern, damping, steering and active differential performance are all automatically tweaked in Sport mode, and the Vehicle Stability Control has a ‘track’ setting that can be selected to reduce the level of system intervention. All versions will be fitted with an active differential, Adaptive Cruise Control, rain-sensing wipers and a rear-view camera, and the Premium (US) or Pro (UK) trim level adds all-leather seats and a JBL sound system. The final touch is the A90 special edition, referencing the Supra’s ‘A’ chassis code; the first generation was the 1978 A40, and it’s gone on from there. The A90’s production will be strictly limited to just 24 examples for UK customers, and finished in Storm Grey matt paint finish, with matt black alloy wheels and red leather upholstery. US Supra prices start at $49,990 in the USA and £52,695 in the UK.
Images courtesy of Toyota