This is a sports car we'd happily drive every day.
Few cars released in the past several years have been as controversial as the 2020 Toyota Supra. The return of this iconic sports car was cause for celebration, yet some detractors focused on how the car was co-developed with BMW and didn't come with a Toyota engine or transmission like the Mk4 generation that preceded it. After having several opportunities to drive the Mk5 Supra, including a week-long road test, we firmly believe that the detractors are misguided and the partnership with BMW was successful. Here are our five favorite features of Toyota's newest sports car.
Yes, the Supra's 3.0-liter turbocharged inline-six is a BMW engine, specifically the popular B58 unit. It comes mated to a ZF eight-speed automatic transmission and the only way to get a manual is on the aftermarket. Manual fans may sob but the ZF eight-speed is among the best automatics available today. The engine it's mated to is no joke either, with 335 horsepower and 369 lb-ft of torque yielding a real-world 0-60 mph time of under four seconds.
The Supra feels quick at all times but Toyota has made it remarkably easy to access maximum fun with the press of a button. Unlike many BMW models, which feature a slew of drive modes, the Supra only has normal and sport. Just press the Sport button and the Supra immediately wakes up with sharper throttle response, tighter dampening, quicker shifts, and a louder exhaust. The B58 engine sounds pretty good in normal mode but in sport mode, it feels like an AK-47. Let off the throttle and your ears will be rewarded with gunshot noises from the exhaust.
It may seem silly to mention trunk space in a feature about a sports car but this may be the deciding factor for a lot of buyers. What good is a sports car if it can't be livable on a day-to-day basis? Here the Supra excels with 10.2 cubic feet of trunk space, which is about on par with a sub-compact sedan. The Supra's hatchback design means you can fit large packages with ease and cram longer items into the cabin.
The cabin is yet another area where we see the benefits of Toyota's partnership with BMW. All of the interior switchgear and technology is borrowed from BMW, meaning it feels more premium than most Toyota products. In fact, we'd go so far as to say this is the most premium Toyota cabin with the possible exception of the Land Cruiser. Toyota did have some influence on the interior design, like the thinner steering wheel, which we prefer to the ones BMW uses on its cars.
The suspension tuning is the area where Toyota had the most influence on the Supra's development. Once the platform for the Supra and Z4 was finished, Toyota and BMW split up to tune their cars and never traded notes during the development process. It was during this development where Toyota differentiated its car. The Supra feels sharper than the Z4 without losing any comfort on the road. We would like to see Toyota develop a stiffer, more track-focused Supra but the current model is so comfortable, we'd be happy to drive it every day.