The Future of the Supra
2002 MkV?
Where Does the Future Lie?

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2000 MkV?
Toyota Supra Turbo
2002?
Toyota Supra Turbo
2000?

There isn't a whole lot known at this point about the next generation Supra Turbo, which will technically be the MkV, but I did get this little snippet from the Automobile Magazine caption for the above (Year 2000) picture...

"Even if the MR2 isn't going to make it, Toyota knows that it has to keep at least one sports car
in its stable. Enter the leaner, meaner Supra. Pundits are predicting the return
of the affordable Supra, with more aggressive looks but fewer frills. The car's
24-valve 3.0-liter inline-6 is expected to see at least 330 bhp in turbocharged form."

To me this seems realistic since the current twin turbo model is sporting 320-bhp, which is no where near the engine's limits judging by the amount the same model puts out in Japan and what a simple turning up of the wick can do... In fact, the MkIII style body was offered in Japan as the 276-bhp Supra 2.5 Twin Turbo R (which most avid group followers know as the JZA-70). It was an all-new 2.5 liter inline six fitted with two ceramic turbochargers and 24 valves. It was created to compete with the Skyline GT-R (and did fairly well considering it didn't have the 4WD weight). The 3.0-liter version put out 320-bhp and low and behold, that's what the Twin Turbo got in our version. Our powertrain selections always seem to be off by one body style compared to the offerings in Japan. They like to give their new engines a full durability life cycle before offering them here. So my best guess is whatever the engine in the Japan-spec TT is making, we'll have in the new body style.

Of course since the model year 2000 cars are hitting the streets now, it looks like the Y2K Supra won't be happening. Luckily, it's still being made in Japan with no plans of a production cease. Of course the one being made now is still based on the fairly bloated looking design being used today, which IMHO looks like the artists stopped after making a nice front end. The back end, especially, needs work. Enter the latest rumor... the 2002 Supra. Now this Supra looks like a return to the mean, sporty, classic, timeless styling I've been used to seeing come from Toyota since '79... I hope they don't lose too much in the translation... :-)

But I hate conjecture. I guess we'll just have to see what the incredible engineering staff in Toyota City, Japan comes up with next... Still, for those who like to gossip, I've been trying to keep up with the latest rumor mill below...

Rumor Mill:

(8/14/99) - (from a UK magazine) - TOYOTA'S SECRET PORSCHE DASHER - Toyota is rumored to be preparing a storming new 400bhp sports coupe to launch alongside the new Lexus. Seen as a spiritual successor to the 2000GT which appeared at the 1965 Tokyo Motor Show, it will compete with the Aston D87 Vantage and Porsche 911. Details of the specification are hard to come by, but according to one contact the engine will be a 4.0-litre V8. Toyota has two options for the powerplant. The first is the V6 from the Lexus LS400, but with variable valve timing to give it a more sporting character. The more exciting but less likely alternative is a version of the V8 that powered Toyota's Le Mans racer to second place in this year's 24-hour race. Capacity would be increased from 3.6 to 4.0 litres.

The new car's exterior styling will have a retro look, and will be more muscular even than the Supra. A mixture of carbon fibre and aluminium body panels will ensure that the car is extremely light.

The price is likely to be around 75,000, and the car should make its debut in 2002.

(8/09/99) - (source: Autoweek 8/09/99, Page 4) - Toyota GT lives Twice Evoking a low-volume sports car best known for its appearance in the 1967 James Bond movie You Only Live Twice, Toyota is working on a new Japanese supercar called the 4000GT, to be launched to coincide with the automaker's Formula One debut in 2002, sources say. Early renderings of the coupe suggest a resemblenace to the Supra, but with more aggressively pronounced lines. Toyota hinted at such a car when it gave journalists a drive of a prototype 295-hp, 40-valve V-8 powered "4500GT" in 1989. The question of the primary power source for the next-millenium 4000GT is split into two camps. I Informed opinion points toward a tuned version of the Celsior's (Lexus LS 400) 4.0 liter V-8. An updated version will get a reworked cylinder head as well as Toyota's sports twin-cam, featuring dual VVT-I technology with maximum power of more than 390 HP. The other camp says it will be a detuned version of the TS020-type 3.6 liter V8 that powered Toyota to second place in this year's 24 Hours of Le Mans. But that would make the car a 3600GT. If Toyota does build the supercar, the car will get a full leather interior with wood trim, as did the 2000GT three decades ago. Toyota introduced the 2000GT at the 1965 Tokyo Motor Show, with a 149-horsepower 2.0 liter six. By breaking the 276-hp maximum set by Japanese manufacturer's gentleman's agreement, Toyota looks to leap past the Acura NSX and challenge the likes of the Porsche 911 GT3 and Ferrari 360 Modena. But the target price is in the NSX's range - about $87,000.

(9/01/98) - The latest from the enthusiast magazines is that the Supra isn't going to be brought over to the US for the '99 model year. This doesn't preclude the possibility of a Supra 2000 coming out. Who knows? The Corvette skipped a year. Why not the Supra? In Japan, the '99 sports the combination of the current model's twin-turbo setup but adds the VVT-i (variable valve timing - intelligent) for even more gumption.

(8/31/97) - Latest word is that the '98 Supra (TT and N/A) will carry over in the '98 model year with no major changes from the '97. This comes straight from Toyota... Perhaps '99?

(8/27/97) - Toyota is thinking about releasing the next gen Supra (MkV) as the Supra 2000. Perhaps they're thinking about returning to their roots (the 2000GT of yore)??


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Christopher M. Jensen
© 1995/96/97/98 CJ Inc.
Created: Mar 11th, 1997
Last modified: Aug 22nd, 1999