Cars > Peek

Toyota releases new entry-level four-banger Supra

Which should be more affordable if made available in our market

A weaker, cheaper Toyota Supra? Why the hell not? PHOTO FROM TOYOTA

Some people worship in the church of engine displacement, while others follow the teachings of Colin Chapman. If you’re one of the latter and prefer less weight over more power, then Toyota now has the perfect Supra for you. The automaker has just unveiled a new entry-level version of the Japanese icon that is powered by a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-banger instead of the usual six-cylinder mill. This Supra may have fewer horses, but it also carries less weight. As a result, Toyota claims that the car handles even better than its more muscular brother.

With a sports car as beautiful as this, no one will suspect it has a smaller engine. Go for it then. PHOTOS FROM TOYOTA

Just like the 3.0-liter version, the new 2.0-liter block also has BMW genes in its metal, makes use of a single twin-scroll turbocharger, and is mated to an eight-speed ZF automatic transmission. Total power output is 258hp and maximum torque is 400Nm—77hp and 100Nm less than the bigger block. However, the smaller engine also makes the whole car 100kg lighter, and so it still manages a respectable acceleration time of 0-100km/h in 5.2 seconds, and a limited top speed of 250km/h. Because the engine is also more compact, engineers were able to fit it closer to the center of the car, helping achieve 50:50 front-rear weight balance in the process.

The 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine makes 258hp, 400Nm. PHOTO FROM TOYOTA

Global sales are scheduled to start in March of this year. In the standard Live specification, the 2.0-liter Supra comes with black Alcantara seats, 18-inch alloy wheels and a four-speaker audio system. If you fancy spending more cash, then options like the Sport pack (which adds an active diff, variable suspension and better brake) or the Connect pack (for better online services) can be ordered. A Premium pack is available for anyone who fancies a better stereo, powered leather seats and a heads-up display. There’s no scrimping on the safety side either, with all the usual features like lane-keep assist, road sign assist and pedestrian detection with active braking all onboard.

This is a tasty-looking interior, is it not? It inspires driving. PHOTOS FROM TOYOTA

A total of 200 lucky customers will be able to take a limited Fuji Speedway launch edition that comes with a special white metallic paint job, matte-black wheels, red side-mirror housings and a red-and-black Alcantara interior. Although the press release specifically talks about a global sales launch, the focus for this entry-level Supra seems to be Europe, and we just have to wait and see when it will make its way to our shores. No word on pricing for now, so the speculation game starts again. With the 3.0-liter version hammering your wallet at a hefty P5 million, we sincerely hope that the less premium Supra will be significantly more affordable.

Frank Schuengel

Frank is a German e-commerce executive who loves his wife, a Filipina, so much he decided to base himself in Manila. He has interesting thoughts on Philippine motoring. He writes the aptly named ‘Frankly’ column.