The covers will at last come off Toyota's returning sports car at the Detroit motor show in January 2019
Mark Tisshaw
30 October 2018

The returning Toyota Supra will be revealed at the Detroit motor show in January, the company has confirmed.

Deliveries of the new sports car will begin soon after, Toyota added in a short release, with the first cars due to be seen in the first half of next year.

Read our review of the 2019 Toyota Supra prototype 

The Supra name will be back on a Toyota sports car for first time since 2002, development of this all-new model having taken place alongside the new BMW Z4. Development started in 2012 as one of a series of projects between Toyota and BMW. 

Power comes from a BMW-sourced 3.0-litre straight-six engine with around 340bhp and 350lb ft. Drive is sent to the rear wheels through an eight-speed ZF automatic transmission.

The Supra, which also features a BMW M Active limited-slip differential, weighs around 1500kg and has a 50:50 weight distribution, its body constructed of a blend of steel and aluminium. 

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The Supra's lengthy gestation period has led to a series of leaks and drip-feed of information in the build-up to its hotly anticipated launch. 

Previous images that surfaced on a parts catalogue site published to the SupraMkV.com forums show three different wheel sizes for three different specs, as well as the availability of turbocharged four-cylinder and six-cylinder engines. 

Full styling of the car is not revealed in the images, but key elements such as the front lights, bumper, dashboard with digital instrument display, rear bumper and splitter are shown separately, giving more hints as to what the car will look like. It will also feature the distinctive, script-like Supra logo seen on the previous-generation car.

Chief engineer for the project, Tetsuya Tada, previously told Autocar at the Goodwood Festival of Speed, where the car made its dynamic debut, some of the tech specs of the new model. 

“I can’t disclose specific figures, but the output of this engine is on a par with that which we have with the F-Series from Lexus,” Tada said. The RC-F and GS-F make 389lb ft. He continued: “But you can imagine from seeing it that the car is light and compact – its wheelbase is even shorter than the GT86’s. It’s around 200-300kg lighter than the F-Series [which weighs around 1700-1800kg].”

The Supra's expected 1500kg makes it 250kg heavier than the GT86 and 14kg lighter than the fourth-generation Supra, which went out of production in 2002. This would also make the car 14kg lighter than a PDK-equipped Porsche 911 Carrera S, with which the Supra's expected 0-62mph time of 3.8sec would make it most comparable.

Goodwood Festival of Speed live coverage

While Lexus’s 5.0-litre V8 is naturally aspirated and makes its peak torque at nearly 5000rpm, the BMW-sourced turbocharged straight-six unit is likely to produce its peak power in the 2500rpm range.

Tada says that the Supra will be neutrally balanced and perhaps even more focused than the GT86 sports car, for which he was also the chief engineer. “The centre of gravity is lower than the GT86’s,” Tada said, “and body rigidity is twice that of the GT86.”

As with the GT86, insiders have stated that driving pleasure will rank above outright performance. Tada told Autocar earlier this year: "It's really fun to drive this car. Front engines, rear drive… with such a concept, you can have the greatest amount of fun to enjoy a drive in the world. It's fun on the road as well as the race track, the autobahn and the English countryside."

Tada emphasised that the Supra and Z4 will be very different from one another, suggesting that while they share several common parts, their handling will differ by quite some margin. He said: "It's different to the Z4; they are two different cars. We didn't start by finding common parts. We worked on our own ideas to see what cars we wanted to create, then we shared ideas to identify where we can share common parts."

An earlier sighting of the Supra's interior showed BMW switchgear, including a dashboard-mounted infotainment screen and accompanying rotary dial controller on the central tunnel, as well as BMW heating control buttons and a BMW automatic gear selector. Toyota might fit its own parts to the final car's interior, but this sighting suggests the electrical architecture beneath will be based on BMW's systems.

Toyota hinted at the performance focus of its upcoming sports car with the reveal of a GR Supra Racing Concept at this year's Geneva motor show. That model, which was badged under the firm's performance arm, Gazoo Racing, was a pared-back and more hardcore version of the Supra.

Toyota executives have previously revealed intentions to produce several variants of the Supra with different power outputs, suggesting this motorsport-inspired concept hints at a future range-topping version, likely to be badged as a GRMNToyota is also likely to widely race the new Supra in sports car championships worldwide.

A hybrid version of the car is also predicted to come as part of the BMW tie-up, with both the Supra and Z4 due with electrified four-wheel-drive powertrains at a later stage. Both BMW and Toyota are experts in high-performance hybrid power, with the former having launched the i8 back in 2014 and the latter competing in the World Endurance Championship and winning Le Mans with its TS030 Hybrid. Toyota's racing-derived energy-storing supercapacitors are due to be fitted to the Supra to power its electrified drive hardware.

First previewed by the FT-1 concept of 2014, the design of the next Supra is slightly toned down compared with the concepts that have preceded it. While the FT-1's overall silhouette is familiar, with the headlights, tail-lights and double-bubble roof remaining, the car does away with aggressive features such as side air intakes and a fixed rear wing.

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Comments
37

20 September 2016
So, the GT86 is a Subaru and the new Supra will be a re-skinned BMW. Who will Toyota ask to make the new Celica?

20 September 2016
Not quote, the underlying hybrid tech is Toyota, devleoped from its WEC involvement.

9 November 2016
mpls wrote:

Not quote, the underlying hybrid tech is Toyota, devleoped from its WEC involvement.

exactly

9 November 2016
mpls wrote:

Not quote, the underlying hybrid tech is Toyota, devleoped from its WEC involvement.

exactly

9 November 2016
mpls wrote:

Not quote, the underlying hybrid tech is Toyota, devleoped from its WEC involvement.

exactly

24 September 2016
This is deeply saddening, and I think people will still regard the previous mark Supra as the ultimate in tuner car legacy. I'm simply amazed that they'd pair with BMW - probably one of the most sneered manufacturers around

9 November 2016
archefluxx wrote:

This is deeply saddening, and I think people will still regard the previous mark Supra as the ultimate in tuner car legacy. I'm simply amazed that they'd pair with BMW - probably one of the most sneered manufacturers around

original agreement was a tech swap - toyota get BMW deisel tech and BMW get Toyota Hybrid tech

9 November 2016
archefluxx wrote:

This is deeply saddening, and I think people will still regard the previous mark Supra as the ultimate in tuner car legacy. I'm simply amazed that they'd pair with BMW - probably one of the most sneered manufacturers around

original agreement was a tech swap - toyota get BMW deisel tech and BMW get Toyota Hybrid tech

12 April 2018
jamesf1 wrote:
archefluxx wrote:

This is deeply saddening, and I think people will still regard the previous mark Supra as the ultimate in tuner car legacy. I'm simply amazed that they'd pair with BMW - probably one of the most sneered manufacturers around

original agreement was a tech swap - toyota get BMW deisel tech and BMW get Toyota Hybrid tech

That went well then, for BMW!!

typos1 - Just can’t respect opinion

28 November 2016
Lazy comment.

My last car was a 330D, never missed a beat in three and half years, had 260+ bhp, but did 44 mpg. Not a single glitch in that time, just routine servicing. Lovely handing. Crap interior admittedly though.

Car before that was a 520D, didn't miss a beat in three years, lovely handling, 186 bhp, 45 mpg. Glorious interior, and the best car out of the 23 I've owned over the years.

Ever taken a BMW to pieces or rebuilt one? I have, and they are very well engineered, parts fit together much easier than other brands, because there's not a cheap compromise built in.

New car is a Qasqai as my priorities change, but it's also a satisfying car, but I don't suppose you'd sneer at that though as it's not a premium grand. Looking forward to your comments regarding Audi styling i.e. "just a different enlarge/reduce setting on the copier".

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