Toyota brought back the beloved Supra with help from BMW. Here’s what you need to know about it.
After years of waiting, the new Supra is here—Toyota showed off the 2020 Supra at the Detroit Auto Show earlier this month, and not a moment too soon. Here, we’ve compiled everything we know about the car, from interviews with various people behind the MkV Supra and our drive of a pre-production prototype last year.
We’re also curious to see how the MkV stacks up against its legendary predecessor, the MkIV Turbo. Our first review of a Supra Turbo from March 1993 helps us see what 25-
Or not. When you compare the specs of the MkIV Supra Turbo and the MkV on paper, they’re strikingly similar. The new car is a little lighter and shorter, but ever so slightly taller and wider. The MkV only has 15 more horsepower and 50 more lb-ft of torque than the MkIV Turbo, though it’s shaved almost a second off the 0-60 mph time. The top speeds on both are electronically limited.
The fact that there’s so little on-paper improvement isn’t necessarily a bad thing. In its day, the MkIV was a supercar-rival, with a spec sheet that inspired folklore; today, the MkV is just a middle-of-the-road sports car. But driving experience is more important than numbers in the sports-car world, so here are a few excerpt from each review.
1993 Supra Turbo:
“[W]hy get on and off the throttle when you can keep it pressed down and thunder to 60 mph in 5.0 seconds? Nice round number, five seconds. And bettered in our Road Test Summary by only the Dodge Viper, Ferrari’s 512TR and F40, the Lamborghini Diablo, Shelby’s 427 Cobra and the Vector W8 TwinTurbo. . . At approximately $38,000 for the Turbo (and about $32,000 for the naturally aspirated version), it doesn’t take a mathematician to figure out that the Supra Turbo is one of car-dom’s biggest bangs for the buck.
On paper, the right parts and the right size, but what happens at the track? How about 0.98g around the skidpad, 66.0 mph through the slalom and stopping distances from 60 mph on the order of 120 ft. Like the Supra Turbo’s acceleration, its handling and braking prowess are close to the best we’ve ever seen, regardless of cost.”
2020 Supra Pre-Production Prototype:
“It’s a legitimate hoot to drive. I had one afternoon to sample the car, including a handful of laps at Jarama Race Circuit and an hour or so summiting the winding mountain roads of rural Spain. It was just enough to make me want more..
Out on the hairpins of Jarama, that short wheelbase makes the Supra more than happy to pivot. You feel the thing squirm around a bit under braking, especially at the end of the straightaway where you’re flirting with 140 mph. Rolling on unique compound Michelin Pilot Super Sports (255s up front, 275s in the rear, on upgrade 19-inch wheels) and optional adaptive dampers, the close-coupled car feels playful and engaging, never squirrely.
It also feels decidedly un-turbocharged. Final calibration is still being done—despite sharing its engine with the Z4, the Supra will have unique drivetrain programming—but I’m told this single-turbo engine maxes out at a little more than seven psi of boost. The torque comes on early and never really drops off; unlike some turbo powerplants, this engine rewards a run all the way to its 6500-rpm redline, and unless you’re demanding full boost at 50 mph in top gear, you’ll never catch the turbo sleeping on the job.”
But enough dwelling on the past. Here’s everything we know about the MkV Supra.
This story will be continually updated as more information is learned. It was last updated 2/06/2019.
The First One Sold For Crazy Money
Shortly after the Supra debuted, #001 went to auction at Barrett-Jackson where it commanded $2.1 million. The proceeds were donated to charity, but that’s still a ton of money to pay for a car that otherwise costs under $60,000. Kinda makes you forget about that $121,000 MkIV Supra Turbo, doesn’t it?
It Can Drift
Well, obviously. Being front-engine and rear-wheel drive, it’s not too much of a surprise the new Supra is able to drift as well as its predecessor. Pro drifter Fredric Aasbø was able to get behind the wheel for a short session to show off the new car’s sideways capabilities. He also talks about how he practices during the off-season on ice with his collection of beat-up Mk IV cars, which is cool.
It Sounds Like This
It sounds, unsurprisingly, like a BMW. Not that we have a problem with it—BMW inline sixes sound lovely.