There have been people talking about Toyota bringing back the Supra for almost as long as it’s been out of production. Toyota themselves haven’t had much to say on the matter though.
However, Toyota have just announced a new car which, although not officially badged as a Supra, has a lot of the characteristics which might make it a suitable successor. The car is designated the “FT-1” (Future Toyota-1) and is currently in it’s (working) prototype stages.
It’s been designed by Calty Design Research Inc; Toyota’s Californian design team who were responsible for the iconic lines of the original Supra. Alex Shen, Calty’s Studio Chief Designer has described the FT-1 as being “heavily influenced by Toyota’s sports car past, especially Celica and Supra”.
Toyota describe the FT-1 as “a unique fusion of both emotional and rational factors that delivers a more exciting and dramatic design expression”. Obviously that doesn’t mean anything to anyone, but Toyota have tried to convey the message that the FT-1 is designed as a serious sports car.
It’s front engined, rear wheel drive layout is likely to be popular, and Toyota say the wraparound windscreen and the design of the A-pillars are both designed to afford the best cornering vision.
The FT-1 also has some cool features which are shown off in the video such as what looks like active aero and a clear section of the bonnet to show off the engine bay.
Although speculation is rife on the internet, details are thin on the things that really matter such as the engine, drivetrain, weight, price etc but it’s still early days.
When Nissan unveiled the IDx, I commented that I thought new versions of old cars can be a bit hit or miss.
I actually think this looks pretty cool though. If Toyota make it available with a manual gearbox and decent engine option then I think this would make a great “new supra”. There seems to be a lot of discussion over whether people would prefer a 6 cylinder turbo or a V8 (Can’t we have a V8 turbo?) but whatever Toyota elect to install, for it to be a true successor it has to be bulletproof and capable of being extensively tuned too. My guess, although completely unvalidated, is that Toyota may consider a hybrid. Not a crap one like a Prius, but a cool one like Porsche 918 or Audi Quattro.
Here’s Toyota’s promotional video for the FT-1, have a look and let us know what you think in the comment section below.