After waiting and watching it seems Toyota SA has listened to its loyal sports car enthusiasts, who now have precisely timed manual gear shifts at their disposal in the Supra. One blast around Zwartkops Raceway showed that this was the correct decision.
For the new model has been increased in the turbocharged, straight-six 3-litre engine from 250kW to 285kW, making top speeds of up to 200km/h on the Zwartkops straights a breeze. This also brings Supra in line with its performance oriented German cousin, BMW’s Z4 M40i.
Powerful braking into the corners and exceptional acceleration is enhanced with some turbo blip drama on downshifts thanks to Toyota’s iMT system – although you can turn off the auto blips in the settings.
The suspension has been re-tuned to optimise performance and helped Supra keep faithfully to my intended driving line, while allowing a good amount of leeway for throttle inputs.
The GR family – 86, Yaris and Corolla – has reinforced the special qualities that defined the Toyota brand for car enthusiasts. These automobiles are born out of a passion for motoring and draws directly on the world championship-winning expertise.
Since its launch in 2019, the GR Supra has been offered with an eight-speed automatic transmission. While the car and its performance have received high praise worldwide from media and fans alike, there was a longing for a more connected experience.
What we get is a gearbox engineered and tuned specifically for use with the coupe’s straight-six engine. The engineering team was able to modify existing transmission housing, driveshaft and gear set and remove elements that were not required, such as the acoustic package, which further reduced weight.
At the heart of the transmission is a newly engineered clutch with a larger diameter and reinforced diaphragm spring. With a larger friction area and a stronger spring to cope with the demands of the 500Nm torque.
Moving from an automatic, where it’s possible to use second gear when pulling away uphill when opposite wheels are on surfaces with different grip levels, engineers had to tune the car’s traction control to achieve a similarly smooth operation.
The system is also optimised for the GR Supra’s wide tyres and rear-wheel drive.
These roadster characteristics make Supra prone to “snap-off” oversteer and Toyota responded with an updated anti-roll programme (ARP) that allows the vehicle stability control (VSC) to intervene earlier to cover any sudden loss of grip when the car’s high-response suspension setting is used.
Experienced racers can select track mode for more throttle freedom.
New buyers also get some extra paintwork options with the addition of sapphire blue and iridescent metallic grey. Unfortunately, these new hues come at the expense of ice grey, prime silver and grand blue metallic, with matte storm grey also discontinued. White, red, and black remain on offer.
Toyota now offers GR Supra in two models (the four-cylinder variant never came to South Africa):
Included in the price is a 5 year/100,000km service plan is as well as a 3 year/100,000km warranty. Customers can also purchase extended service plans via their Toyota dealer.