AA Driven Car of the Year sports car winner: Toyota Supra, defying the haters
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The new Toyota GR Supra was the most talked about car of 2019 — no question. There were a few reasons for that; the weight of expectation given the return of a legendary nameplate and the much discussed BMW mechanicals that lay underneath its curvy bodywork included.
But away from all the 'haters' the 250kW/500Nm Supra actually turned out to be a very well rounded, compelling sports car package. And naturally this led to it being awarded as the 2019 AA Driven New Zealand Car of the Year sports car/coupe class winner.
We wove through the Supra's BMW relationship back in our July road test, acknowledging that — yes — it's a sports car witha slight identity crisis. But, it's also a sports car that strikes a wonderful balance.
“It’s worth noting too that the Supra turned more heads than any other new car I’ve driven this year — including last month’s McLaren 600LT. A real estate agent in Clevedon even chased me down in his car, just so he could grab a quick photo when I eventually stopped. Nobody has ever done that for a Cayman,” our review said.
“I'll put it this way. Those chasing an ultimate sports car with abilities that defy belief should go and buy a Cayman. Want something more emotive? Grab an M2.
“But, if you want something that lands almost perfectly straight down the middle — sophisticated in its drivetrain but forgivable enough to drive every single day — the Supra is an excellent candidate. While the way it feels and the way it sounds is quintessentially BMW, the ethos that’s pushed it into a unique no-man’s land between practical GT car and competent sports car is distinctly Toyota.”
The other thing to consider with the Supra is its position in the market. Priced at just under $100,000 it undercuts its BMW Z4 cousin by over $30,000, with a similar margin between it and the Porsche Cayman and Jaguar F-Type.
What makes the pricing margin even more impressive is that the Supra has been independently shown to not only pack more power and performance than its spec-sheet numbers dictate, but it also outperforms the Z4 by a handy margin.
Say what you want about its biology; the Supra remains an excellent all-rounder — in our case narrowly edging fellow finalists the Mazda MX-5 and Toyota GT86. Bring on the go-faster models ...