It was a close call, but we expect a bigger margin in 2020.
It's not every day that a Toyota and BMW comparison is a legitimate one, but that's the case with the Toyota Supra and the BMW Z4. Unless you've been hiding under a rock, you'll know by now that the two cars share a platform and a sublime six-cylinder engine (in the case of the Z4 M40i), although in different states of tune.
So, even though these two look quite different, their shared components beg the question: which one has achieved more on the sales charts? In terms of 2019 totals, the Z4 takes it by a slim 57 units, moving 2,941 roadsters to the GR Supra coupe's 2,884. It's not quite as simple as that, though.
Although the Z4 moved more overall units last year, its first sales month was in March 2019, whereas the Supra's first month was July 2019. Despite the BMW's head start, the Supra nearly caught up and, if we assess sales figures from July through December 2019, the Toyota actually outsold the BMW by a healthy 1,256 units locally.
In Europe, the trend is reversed. From July to November 2019, the Z4 comprehensively outsold the Supra by 3,002 units (3,845 to 843). Right now, however, the Supra appears to have the edge in North America, and maybe it's not a big surprise since the Toyota's starting price of $49,990 gets you that brilliant inline-six, whereas you'll have to spend $63,700 on the Z4 sDrive M40i.
You could also make the argument that the Supra badge is more revered than the Z4's. Toyota, long associated with dependable but unremarkable family sedans, gets attention when it makes something like the dramatic Supra (which traces its roots back to the legendary 2000GT), whereas the Z4 is just another fast, luxury drop-top from a brand that has made loads of them over the last couple of decades.
Despite the Supra's power deficit (it makes 335 horsepower relative to the Z4 M40i's 382 hp), it's lighter and will get to 60 mph in just over four seconds, only two-tenths of a second after the Z4. Closely matched they may be in a straight line, but for now, the Supra seems to be finding favor with more Americans than its German twin, and with a new entry-level version featuring a 2.0-liter turbo-four, the Toyota is likely to widen the gap even further.