The consummate Japanese sports car gets even better!
The fifth-generation Toyota GR Supra - dubbed the A90 - divided internet opinion before it launched. How could a Supra be built on a BMW platform? Worse still, how could a nameplate as hallowed as the Supra be powered by a BMW inline-six? Well, the naysayers have been hushed - the Supra has proven doubters wrong, both as an exceptional straight out the box sports car and as a tuner's delight, with 1,000 hp Supras already in existence. But for those who like things stock, there was always one gripe with Toyota's version of the B58 six-pot - the BMW Z4 version had more power. Not anymore, as the 2021 Toyota GR Supra has been announced with more power for the six-cylinder, a new limited A91 Edition trim, and for the first time ever, a 2.0-liter turbo four-cylinder base model.
2020 models of the A90 Supra develop 335 horsepower and 365 lb-ft of torque from the 3.0-liter turbocharged B58 straight-six. Those are healthy outputs, and in combination with the exceptional eight-speed automatic gearbox from ZF, the Supra is capable of a 0-60 mph sprint of just 4.1 seconds. But why stop at 335 hp when the BMW Z4 M40i develops 382 hp in stock form? That's exactly what Toyota thought, with the company's exact words being: "More power. Because, why not?" To that end, 2021 Supras are on the receiving end of a bump in power to match the Z4's 382 hp, while torque also gets increased to 368 lb-ft.
The increases are the result of a new dual-branch, six-port exhaust manifold and a new piston design that reduces compression from 11:1 to 10.2:1. Not only is there more power and more torque, but the torque is available across a greater spread - from 1,800-5,000 rpm - which enables the 2021 Supra to sprint from 0-60 mph in 3.9 seconds - finally breaking the four-second barrier.
The Supra 3.0 gets chassis updates for the new year, too, with lightweight aluminum braces from the strut towers to the radiator for added rigidity, front and rear bump stops, and new damper tuning. We already loved the way the current model rides, so with any luck, these improvements will only make it better. Toyota has also retuned the electric power steering and adaptive suspension settings, as well as the stability control systems and the Active Differential to improve stability through sudden directional changes.
Those that know the history of the Supra will know it started out several decades ago as an elongated version of the Celica, built to accommodate a six-cylinder engine. That six-pot was the hallmark of the Supra, which makes it a little confusing that Toyota released a four-cylinder version in Japan - wouldn't that be called a Celica? Anyway, after seeing the success of the Supra in 2020, Toyota of America was eager to get more bums in seats, which is why for 2021, the US will get a new Supra 2.0 - powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder (BMW codename B48) - developing 255 hp and 295 lb-ft. It makes use of the same eight-speed automatic gearbox and can run to 60 mph in five seconds flat.
The new engine might not be as fast, or as well equipped as the Supra 3.0, but it will carry a cheaper starting price to bridge the gap between the Toyota 86 and the Supra 3.0. No manual is available, but if you really want one, European Auto Group is happy to fit one.
A smaller engine doesn't mean less fun, however, as Toyota has spread the weight savings out across the chassis, saving 200 lbs over the Supra 3.0. Smaller single-piston brakes (now measuring 13 inches in diameter up front compared to 13.7 on the 3.0), the loss of the active differential, manually adjustable seats, and a four-speaker sound system ensure that the Supra 2.0 is able to retain the nearly perfect 50:50 weight distribution of the 3.0.
The 2021 model year brings more changes than just mechanical ones. Inside the cabin of the Supra, all models are now equipped with the 8.8-inch touchscreen (the base model previously had a 6.5-inch screen which is now discontinued). Additionally, both base trims of the Supra 2.0 and 3.0 will also be available with a new Safety and Technology Package for the 2021 model year. This package equips the sports car with adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, navigation, a 12-speaker JBL sound system, wireless Apple CarPlay (still no Android Auto on the BMW infotainment system - yet), Supra Connected Services, and parking sensors with automatic emergency braking. Some of these features are standard on higher trims, but on the 3.0 Premium and new A91 Edition, a Driver's Assist Package will equip adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, and parking sensors.
Pricing has not yet been announced, but the 2021 Supra - in both upgraded 3.0 and newly-added 2.0 guise - will be arriving at dealerships in June 2020. Toyta has told CarBuzz it expects the Supra 2.0 to start in the low $40,000 range.