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New Toyota 2019 'Supra': next model could feature hybrid powertrain

Published: 12 January 2018

  New 2019 Toyota Supra scooped
  Project codename J29: spy photos
  Could use hybrid power

Toyota has just revealed a concept car that could provide some serious clues about the new Supra. Unveiled today, the Toyota GR Super Sport Concept is a wild-looking LMP1-style supercar, but its hybrid engine could very well end up in the new 2019 Toyota Supra.

The Super Sport Concept (below) is a product of Gazoo Racing, Toyota’s motorsport arm, and it’s partly been shown to emphasise the company’s race-to-road initiative. The Super Sport Concept is powered by a twin-turbo, direct injection 2.4-litre V6 engine combined with what Toyota calls a Hybrid System Racing powertrain – and it’s likely something quite similar will end up in the new Supra.

We’ve heard the new Supra will be a Gazoo Racing product, so it makes sense for it to use an engine partially developed by Toyota’s motorsport programme. And the engine currently sitting in the GR Super Sport Concept ticks all the relevant boxes.

For everything else we know about the next Toyota Supra, keep reading


New Toyota Supra: everything we know

There's not been a Toyota Supra on sale since 2002, but the Japanese giant will soon put this omission right - when it launches the production version of the sports car spied here; we’re expecting to see the new rear-wheel drive sports car shown in concept guise later this year. Developed jointly with BMW, the new 2019 Toyota 'Supra' coupe will be built alongside the next-generation Z4, CAR understands.

Toyota’s version, codenamed J29, will be available in hard-top form only - whereas the BMW Z4 will remain a coupe-convertible. It’s just one example of how the two brands are keen to have clear water between the two projects, so they’re not competing with each other. Every prototype Supra we’ve seen in spy photos so far has been a tin-top coupe, but under the skin, the two cars will share plenty of their engineering hardware.

How we first reported the Toyota-BMW collaboration

New Toyota Supra: what will it be called?

Most people are calling Toyota’s next car the Supra, and it’s easy to see why. It’s one of the most impressive names in the car world, and the Supra badge holds both history and prestige for Toyota – but it could be called something else.

The Toyota Yaris GRMN is the first car to be sold in Europe under Gazoo Racing banner, and it’s possible the new Toyota Supra will also be fettled heavily by the Japanese firm’s motorsport brand.

Gazoo Racing are testing the new 2019 Toyota Supra extensively at the Nurburgring

However, the next Toyota Supra could also be referred to as the Toyota GT-One – and that’d also make sense based on the brand’s history. The Toyota GT86 was originally called the FT-86 Concept, and with an FT-1 Concept – widely regarded to be the design bedrock for the next Supra – already shown to the public, it’s possible the next Toyota supercar will be called the GT-1.

If you’re a fan of Le Mans or enduracing racing, you’ll know the ‘GT-One’ was one of the most iconic racing cars ever made by Toyota, and the GT-1 name would be a fitting tribute to the brand’s motorsport history.

New Toyota Supra: what's the price and release date? 

While we’re not sure of the price, we can estimate it based on the possible hybrid powertrain, and the cost of the original supercar. The original model was a rather pricey £40,000 when it launched around 25 years ago – the same as a Lotus Esprit – and that gives an inflation-adjusted figure of £55,000 for a 2019 version of the car. 

Of course, the price will depend on the models it’s being targeted against, too.

New Toyota Supra performance specs: what can we expect?

The BMW and Toyota have been co-developed and share the same rear-wheel drive architecture. It’s a reflection of a shrinking global market for sports cars that two giants of manufacturing are having to collaborate to get the efficiencies of scale required.

New 2019 Toyota Supra codenamed J29: specs, prices and news

Our sources suggest that the two products will look totally unrelated, despite sharing so much of their hardware. This is not merely a reskinned Z4, according to our sources, unlike the close similarity between the Toyota GT86 and Subaru BRZ, for instance.

Engines are understood to be mixture of four- and six-cylinder BMW units, mostly turbocharged and available with dual-clutch transmissions; leaked documents suggest a manual gearbox is not currently a given. Both models are expected to be built by Magna Steyr in Austria, reflecting their low-volume status.

The electronic architecture of the two cars will be identical, but with different programming: the digital dials and e-networks will be essentially the same, but tuned with different look and feel for each brand.

New Toyota Supra: design

Word is the new sports coupe will look to the FT-1 concept car for inspiration, which is fine by us. It looks like a modern take on the classic Japanese sports car.

The new 2017 BMW Z4 concept foreshadows the new BM roadster, twinned with Supra

BMW’s Z4, codenamed G29, has been heavily trailed by the concept car shown at Pebble Beach in summer 2017 (above) - so this show car reveals much of the stance and footprint of the platform.

Engineers cite a 50:50 weight distribution as being a key objective of the new architecture, which bodes well for handling and poise on the road.

Read all our Toyota reviews here

By Tim Pollard

Editorial director of CAR's digital publishing arm. Motoring news magnet

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