Next-gen Toyota Supra expected to be auto-only

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News from a popular online car magazine in the UK suggests that Toyota’s next Supra successor will only be available with automatic transmission.

Motoring enthusiasts, this is the news you’ve been dreading about the long-awaited Toyota Supra successor.

Reports have emerged that suggest Toyota’s next potential icon could forego a traditional manual transmission and be offered in automatic form only.

According to the UK’s Autocar, the reason for the auto-only decision centres around the Supra’s expected hybrid all-wheel drive system – which is another sore point for traditionalists who revere the rear-wheel drive and massive boost combination found in the last Supra model.

Despite wearing a Toyota badge, the next instalment in the Supra saga (and it has become a bit of a saga with the it’s on, it’s off nature of news updates) is being developed in conjunction with BMW. That’s a fact that should see it retain a turbocharged six-cylinder engine – even if it is borrowed from the German car maker’s range.

Built atop a lightweight platform that’s been constructed using all of BMW’s carbon fibre expertise, the new Supra will arrive as a fixed-roof coupe.

The hybrid assist system technology that will power the new Supra has actually been adapted from the one used by Toyota’s Le Mans racing program. Powered by capacitors – which allow rapid discharge and recharge cycles over the traditional hybrid setup used in Toyotas – the hybrid assist system will (apparently) maintain the Supra’s performance edge and allow drivers to initiate quick overtake with the push of a button.

Such a ‘push to pass’ setup provides quick acceleration boosts in short bursts – just like dropping a traditional car down a gear and putting your foot down.

Other than this revelation from Autocar and a few more speculative news updates, the specs of the new Supra are still very much hush hush. It’s thought that it will be based on Toyota’s 2014 FT-1 Concept (pictured above) and we can expect to learn more about a working production version next year.