New Supra lauded as head-turner
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Toyota revived the heritage of one of its most famous sports cars, releasing the Gazoo Racing Supra Concept at this week’s Geneva motor show.
The company says the Supra name evokes power, performance and handling that defined a succession of coupes from 1978 until 2002.
Toyota New Zealand said customers were already offering to pay a deposit to secure the car. Production models are expected to become available during 2019.
The general manager of product and new vehicle sales, Neeraj Lala, said without question the Supra was an iconic Japanese sports car.
“ When I was a youngster, this was one of the most loved sports or street cars on the road, and I can’t wait to reintroduce this to the roads of NZ.” he said.
Lala was involved in the advanced product strategy team while he was on secondment to Toyota US for two and a half years.
“The production car is closely aligned to the original concept, so the design and styling is going to be exceptional and a real head turner,” he said.
“I’d start saving now, as the new Supra won’t disappoint the enthusiasts.
“We’ve already had customers offer to pay deposits to secure the first cars — such is the hype already surrounding Supra.”
The Supra built a reputation as a formidable performer on the road and as a successful machine on the racetrack, dominating Japan's top-level GT racing series.
The GR Supra Racing Concept provides a huge visual clue to the fact that it heralds Supra's return: the large 90 race number on its doors is the codename for the fifth-generation Supra, following the A40, A60, A70 and A80 series produced between 1978 and 2002.
The Supra Racing Concept is a compact, two-door coupe with a pure front-engine/rear-wheel drive configuration.
Its development is true to the belief of Kiichiro Toyoda, founder of Toyota Motor Corporation, that participation in motorsport provides the challenges of performance and durability that can directly help develop better cars, while generating interest and excitement.
The Supra Racing Concept is to be featured in a new update of the Gran Turismo Sport video game scheduled for release next month.
The Supra concept includes a large rear wing, and makes extensive use of strong but lightweight composite material for much of the bodywork.
The concept's chassis features lowered front and rear suspension using BBS racing wheels with centre lock nuts, Michelin racing tyres and Brembo brakes.
The cabin is fitted with a racing dashboard and OMP driver's seat, safety harness and quick-release steering wheel. There is a paddle-shift gear change system. The doors are lined with carbon fibre panels.
Competition safety needs are met by a full roll cage and fire extinguishers, and the fuel and brake lines, pedal box, battery and wiring looms are all designed to competition standard.