It seems as if we’ve been waiting a lifetime for a new Supra to be birthed into the world. We saw concepts, teasers, limited pre-production launches, and have watched Fast and the Furious about a thousand times since Toyota unveiled the FT-1 concept and moistened our loins with a supposed Supra revival. As it’s finally here, we can now confirm that—to paraphrase the immortal words of Seinfeld—“It’s real and it’s spectacular.”
Wading through our review, however, takes time—though we highly recommend you sitting down, grabbing a piping hot cup of coffee, and prepare to overnight parts from Japan. It’s a good read. But for those on the go or those that want just a small tasting menu before the full Supra course, we thought we’d put together a short list of the all-new Supra’s five coolest details.
5.) The Exhaust Note is Good
Enthusiasts and online-speculators held their collective breaths as they waited to hear just what sort of sound the BMW-sourced turbocharged 3.0-liter inline 6-cylinder engine would produce. Would it be as good as the legendary Toyota 2JZ-GTE? Would it sound like the muffled farts of BMW’s M3 and M4?
Everyone’s fears, however, were unwarranted as when we finally got behind the wheel we found that the new Supra’s exhaust was anything but farty nonsense. Though still muffled by emissions equipment and the turbocharger, you can sense the aftermarket potential. It’s good stock. It’s going to be great uncorked.
4.) The MkV Supra is Small
Pictures don’t do this car’s size justice. Though looking somewhat maligned online, in real life, the new Supra is deceptively small. This isn’t a Mustang, Camaro, or Challenger competitor. No, rather, the new Supra is just barely larger than the Toyota 86, Porsche 718 Cayman, or a Ford Focus RS. And Toyota’s engineers did that to give the new Supra the driving dynamics they wanted.
It’s size, however, meant that the Supra’s previous 2+2 layout went the way of the dinosaurs. Instead of a rear set of seats—something even the 86 supposedly has—the rear has become a quasi parcel shelf with integrated audio speakers and a functional rear sway bar that halves the lower and upper part of the car. Interior space for the driver and passenger, however, is generous and drivers will be able to get behind the wheel with a helmet.
3.) The Supra’s Fake Vents Can Be Removed
If there’s one issue that’s sparked a thousand internet debates on modern cars, it’s the addition of fake aesthetic vents. These parts are on nearly every new car that leaves the showroom floor. And the new Supra is no exception. That said, unlike those other new cars where the fake vents cannot be removed, the Supra’s can.
According to technical specs, and even Toyota’s own engineers, the fake vent caps can be removed for aftermarket applications. Though Toyota won’t say what type of applications, from available diagrams, it seems as if the fake apertures can be made into functional aerodynamic and airflow vents. We also suspect that Toyota made these vents semi-functional so that it could introduce hotter versions of the Supra later in its life-cycle. We’d say stay tuned.
2.) It Was and Wasn’t a Group Project
Yes, the Supra shares a chassis, engine, and is built along the same manufacturing line as the BMW Z4. And yes, BMW did the lion share of the engineering on the multiplatform car. However, the finer details, tuning, and handling were all done by Toyota’s engineers by themselves.
According to the engineers spoken to at the launch, neither Toyota nor BMW shared the fine-tuning details of their respective products. That means there was no sharing of engineering notes, nor of driving impressions. Furthermore, neither Toyota’s nor BMW’s development team has driven the other’s car. Based on those who’ve driven both, that’s led to two dramatically different automobiles. And that’s a good thing for Toyota.
1.) You Can Go Full Tokyo Drift
Last, but certainly not least. Traction control, stability control, and the Supra’s other driving aids are completely defeatable. With a few button pushes, and a safe and legal space to frolic, the Supra will dance for you and give you the chance to live that Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift life.