BMW and Toyota to Spawn New Supra
BMW and Toyota’s joint sports car project is due to produce two different vehicles; one of which is very likely to be a new Toyota Supra…
When BMW and Toyota originally got together in 2012, the plan was to produce a mid-size sports car. However, it now looks as though the joint venture will now deliver two new cars: the next generation Z4 and the much anticipated return of the Toyota Supra.
But before you think that a new Supra would spell the end for the much-loved GT86 – a not so far-fetched reality – think again.
Karl Schlicht, Toyota’s European VP and product planning chief, said at the Geneva Motor Show: “The intention with the new car is for it to sit above the GT86. It doesn’t replace that model; the GT86 goes on with its own mission.”
The Celica badge was traditionally used for vehicles of a similar size to the GT86 and by using the Supra name on the new model, Toyota are not only alluding to a potential new flagship car, but will also be able to reflect its majesty – and complex powertrain and high-tech construction – in the price tag.
Toyota’s FT-1 sports car concept is likely to be the base for the new Supra, especially given its same approximate length and Supra-esque look.
BMW board member Ian Robertson believes the joint project can satisfy different niches within the sports car market and was keen to stress that two offerings could be the ultimate result: “The one thing we’re clear on now is that a platform for both companies can work. The cars in themselves don’t actually need to be positioned the same. The platform can spawn two positionings.”
He also responded to speculation that the platform perhaps isn’t scalable: “Gone are the days when one platform was one platform. Most of our platforms are scalable these days.”
We’ll have to wait and see how BMW and Toyota’s joint project pans out, but if a new Supra is one of the fruits of their labour, then we’re all for it!