How BMW Helped Make the New Toyota Supra Happen

Back in 2017, Toyota jumped back into the rear-wheel-drive sports car scene with the 86. Of course, it had only been a rebadged Scion FR-S at the time. That wasn’t enough for them, or the enthusiasts, so they had to go bigger and better. That leads us to the 2019 announcement that the new Toyota Supra is right around the corner.

We’ve heard them talking about it for some time. In fact, they announced back at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show that they planned to work with BMW to build a sports car. Then, they flaunted the camouflaged Supra around at the 2018 Goodwood Festival of Speed.

Of course, by then, we were hooked. We couldn’t wait to get more information about this sports car. After plenty of waiting, Toyota finally took the cover off the Supra and let us take a good hard look at it. Now it’s time to share what we know with you.

What Will the New Supra Cost?

You can’t expect the new Supra to be budget-friendly. If you are looking for a cheap sports car, you need to go with the Toyota 86 instead. That starts at just $26,255 and is a great way to get your feet wet. If, however, money isn’t the concern, then this new rear-wheel-drive sports car is right up your alley.

The new Supra will start at $49,990 for the base model plus an extra $930 destination charge. Keep in mind, that price is for the 3.0-liter inline-six. We don’t yet know the cost of the four-cylinder as that won’t arrive right away, if we ever see it at all.

What Engine is in the New Supra?

3-Liter Inline Six

After hearing those prices, you are probably wondering more about the engine options. One of the benefits of working with BMW on this project is the access they received to a smooth turbo 3.0-liter inline-six. Initial numbers from ZF (the transmission supplier) indicate that this mill should pump out 335 horsepower.

In fact, it’s the same engine found in the M240i and other cars from this German automaker, which is to say it’s torquey, responsive and sublime.

2-Liter Four Cylinder

Furthermore, there’s talk of a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder option down the road. The engine itself is lighter and provides superior weight distribution. Because of the lower cost, it’s also a reliable engine for swapping, something Toyota knows will happen. We’ve received information that it might come with two power options: either 197 or 255 horsepower.

Unfortunately, it’s not yet known if the four-cylinder option will ever come to the United States. Initially, we will only have access to the six-cylinder Supra. The first launch of the four-cylinder model will be overseas. If you are set on driving a rear-wheel drive four-cylinder Toyota sports car, you’ll have to settle for the 86 for now.

Toyota Name, BMW Interior

Everyone knows that the new Supra and upcoming Z4 have a lot in common, but you might not realize how much they have shared. The interior is a perfect reflection of the Z4. You’ll find the iDrive and switchgear come right from BMW. This might seem strange, but you have to keep in mind that BMW does a great job with their interiors.

Toyota made sure to add their touches to the interior wherever they could. For example, the optional 8.8-inch touchscreen might be a BMW piece but there are modern Supra graphics integrated as one might expect.

Standard features found on the 3.0 Base trim level include rain-sensing wipers, dual-zone automatic climate control and a 6.5-inch display. If you prefer to upgrade to the 3.0 Premium trim level, plan to spend another $4,000. This gives you access to heated leather seats, navigation and the 8.8-inch screen with Apple CarPlay. Optional features include additional active-safety equipment and a premium JBL sound system.

The Z4 Will Arrive First

Because BMW did most of the developing, they get time to make the first sales. That’s why the Z4 is scheduled to hit dealerships this spring while it’s still a 2019 model. Then, the Toyota Supra will follow up later in the year as a 2020 model.

What’s interesting is that BMW plans to charge about the same price for their four-cylinder version. It’s going to be hard for consumers to justify spending the same amount for less power and a convertible top. We look forward to seeing what happens.

Manual Transmission? Think Again

If you were hoping to get a Toyota Supra with a manual transmission, you might be out of luck. The ZF documents further indicate that both engine options come with an eight-speed automatic only. There’s no mention anywhere about a manual transmission choice, but that doesn’t rule out the possibility. Unfortunately, if they were going to add one, it would probably be for the overseas market.

Disappointing as that may be, we’d be willing to bet that aftermarket tuning shops will weigh in on that topic sooner than later. We hope so, anyway.

Differences Between the New Supra and Z4

While the Supra and Z4 are quite similar, they aren’t identical twins.

Drop Top and Tuning

To begin with, BMW is only offering the Z4 as a roadster. The Supra, on the other hand, is only a coupe. Exterior differences don’t end there, with the BMW Z4 taking on a longer, more sport-touring-inspired profile to the Toyota Supra’s taut and sporty appearance. With that said, this rendering of what a potential 2019 Z4 Coupe might look like shows how similar these two cars really are.

Aside from that, though they share many major driveline components, the tuning for the Supra and Z4 was done separately. That leaves the Supra to be more sports-focused than the Z4 will be.

Exterior Color Options

Standard color options include gray, black, white, silver, blue and red. If you want yellow, you’ll have to pay another $400. If you have the means to spend even more, you could opt for the matte gray which will be another $1,200.

The Launch Edition models will be the first to hit the United States. There will only be 1500 produced at first. These cars are available in white, black or red. They also feature red mirror caps, a special plaque located on the dashboard and matte black wheels.

Will You Drive the New Supra?

We would love to hear your thoughts on the new Supra. Do you plan to purchase one when they hit dealerships later this year? Do you think it helps or hurts Toyota that they collaborated so heavily with BMW on this project?

We can’t wait to hear what you have to say – make sure you leave us a comment below!


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