A legend reborn
The Toyota GR Supra is not only the rebirth of a legendary name, it is a future classic too.
There are plenty of options on the new and used car market, but not many if you’re looking for an iconic sportscar, especially one that can be used as a daily driver and doesn’t cost more than a fair-sized family home. Enter the Toyota Supra…
The Supra nameplate is well known to car fans, having been a stable presence in the Toyota lineup for decades until it disappeared for over 20 years. Since it was announced in 2014 this has been the most widely anticipated new car in ages, for everyone from hardcore Supra fans to petrolheads to those who just appreciate a beautiful car.
At the heart of the Supra is a straight-six petrol engine, as is the tradition with the Supras of the past. This particular one is 3-litres in capacity and fitted with a single turbocharger, producing power of 250kW and torque of 500Nm at 1600rpm.
From the moment you push the Start button and the smooth engine growls into life, you know that you’re in for a treat. An eight-speed transmission might be a big step from the traditional manual gearbox, but it is the most current technology available, offering smooth, lightning-quick gear shifts as well as manual control via paddle shifters. There are also Normal and Sport modes to suit driving conditions and the driver’s intentions.
Because Toyota wanted to do the Supra name justice, the 2019 model is a true driver’s tool. One example of that is an active differential has been specified for the local market, which operates both when accelerating and decelerating and can seamlessly adjust from zero to full, 100% lock, with instant response.
A dedicated ECU monitors a wide range of inputs, including steering wheel, throttle and brake pressure, engine and wheel speed and yaw rate, for appropriate triggering of the actuator. The torque difference between the left and right wheels is controlled flexibly and seamlessly depending on the driving situation.
All of these factors contribute to the ultimate driving car, but they would be lost without a purpose-built chassis. The Supra’s chassis was designed from a clean sheet to prioritise agility and handling, and this single-minded purpose is evident when you turn into a corner and the car goes exactly where you expect it to.
Two grades of Supra are available: the GR Supra Track and GR Supra. The former is aimed at the driver who intends on driving his Supra at track days and the like, and so prioritises driving dynamics over comfort and specification levels. That said, the Track is still fitted with dual-zone automatic air conditioning, smart entry with push-button start, leather-trimmed steering wheel with thumb-mounted switches and a digital instrument cluster. LED technology is used for the adaptive headlights, rear lights and daytime running lights, and the mirrors (door mirrors and rear-view mirror) are all auto-dimming. Further convenience is provided by rain-sensing wipers and a rear-view camera. A 10-speaker audio system with 6.5-inch display with Bluetooth and USB port is also included.
The GR Supra model receives an upgrade to 8.8-inch infotainment system with built-in satellite navigation and 12-speaker JBL audio system with mid-mounted subwoofers for superb acoustics. The sports seats are upholstered in a combination of leather and Alcantara (Track model features fabric seats) and are power-adjustable (including lumbar support), with integrated heating and memory functions.
Wireless charging, Tyre Pressure Monitoring, Park Distance Control (PDC) and Heads-Up Display (HUD) add to the convenience spec tally. The Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS) forms part of the higher-grade feature list.
Another key differentiator between the Track and ‘normal’ GR Supra models is the Toyota Safety Sense system – the Track grade foregoes this system in lieu of weight savings and purposed driving environments.
The Toyota GR Supra Track is priced from R972 100 and the GR Supra from R1 093 700. A 5-services/80 000km service plan is provided as well as a 3-year/100 000km Warranty. Customers can also purchase extended service plans via their Toyota dealer.
True sportscar handling