5 things we would do if tuning the new Toyota Supra

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On TG's shopping list: a 500bhp BMW M engine, and a big ol' spoiler alert

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When we drove the prototype of the new Toyota GR Supra and interviewed Gazoo Racing chief Tetsuya Tada back in September 2018, he told us that Toyota were actively encouraging tuners to get their hands on the car.

(Click HERE to read about our drive of the new Toyota Supra)

In fact, they were even set on releasing specs to the modders early, so tuners could get straight to work prepping power and handling upgrades.

Whether or not Toyota followed through with such generosity isn’t yet clear, but given how the A80 Supra of the Nineties (ahh, remember the 1990s?) was revered in the aftermarket world, we wouldn’t be surprised to see some spanners taken to the new one.

So, if you’re able to splash out the cash needed for a straight-six Supra and still have change to spare, here are five things we would change or add to ensure that the spirit of the Mk4 lives on…

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Where else could we start? Perhaps the most iconic part of the Mk4 Supra – and the part that was generally left as stock – was its giant, sweeping rear wing.

The presence of that small ducktail style spoiler on the Mk5 then might irk some. However, given that the production car looks so similar to the FT-1 concept unveiled in 2014, we know that something like the pop-up curved wing on that car could look fantastic on the new Supra.

We also know from speaking to Tada that the boot lid has been reinforced to cope with extra load. Toyota wants you to do it.

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Another design feature on the back of the FT-1 concept was the huge rear diffuser – which has unfortunately been toned down for mass production. Given the prominence that it still commands at the back of the car though, we would love to see more vanes added alongside that Formula 1 style central brake light.

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The first thing to be swapped out when tuners get their hands on most cars, the Mk4 Supra was not exempt from the penchant for changing alloy wheels. In the new car there is certainly room to upgrade from the 19-inchers that come as standard, and a bigger diameter wheel at the rear could give the car an even more muscular stance.

Rays TE37s in bronze, anyone?

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During our drive of the prototype Mk5, one thing we hoped for was slightly more from the engine note. The success of the Supra means it has earned the right to command attention in the street, and an obnoxiously loud exhaust seemed to fit the character of the Mk4 so well.

An aftermarket job on the new car then could give it the presence of its older brother.

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The new Supra’s engine of course began life at BMW, and still retains the code B58B30M1. However, in true Supra tradition it still remains a 3.0-litre straight-six – so there are no complaints about parts sharing from us.

(Click HERE to read about our First Drive in the new BMW Z4 M40i)

The 2JZ engine in the previous car though was a masterpiece, and it wasn’t uncommon to see examples with four-figure power outputs, so to retain that tradition it would only be right to have a fettle under the bonnet of the new one.

Here’s where the BMW parts bin gets interesting. Recently, BMW’s unveiled a new bespoke M engine: the 3.0-litre bi-turbo straight six in the X3 M and X4 M. Risible vehicles taste-wise, but their heart is a good one. It features a lightweight, cooling-optimised 3D-printed head, forged crankshaft and delivers 503bhp in ‘Competition’ form. Surely that’ll squeeze into the Supra’s engine bay, given it’s been designed to accept Bavarian six-pots?

A 500bhp Supra eh? That’d give 911s and F-Types some spicy sushi to chew on…

STORY Greg Potts

Author: TopGear
Top Gear is a British television series about motor vehicles, primarily cars, and is the most widely watched factual television programme in the world.