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Toyota's MegaWeb showcase in the center of Tokyo proudly displays 13 sedans, 11 minivans, nine hatchbacks, six 4x4s, four station wagons and zero sports cars. Since production of the MR2 went the way of the Supra and the Celica and Soarer fell under the Lexus banner, Toyota has had precious little for car enthusiasts to get excited about.

The situation is so dire that even Toyota's top brass have noticed. According to the August 26th edition of "Best Car" magazine (Japan is no longer just 16 hours ahead of the US it would seem), the board of directors has created a "Committee to create interesting cars" in response to grass roots criticism that recent Toyotas are uninteresting. Let's hope that by admitting to having a problem, the company has taken the first step to recovery.

No word about what the committee's recommendations have been to date, but we'll let you know as soon as we hear.

[Source: Best Car]


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  • 29 Comments
      • 8 Years Ago
      1-Take one lightweight rwd 2+2 chassis, add robust 2.0L I4 with about 250hp NA yet capable of taking boost, make it as balanced as an AE86, make it as attractive as your post Y2K sport coupes, sell it under 20K.... problem solved

      2-Supra

      3-Lexus MR-2

      4-Lexus IS coupe...with a getrag 6 speed option

      ...problem solved....@ step 1
        • 8 Years Ago
        hehe.....got a lil carried away huh? I do tend to ask for a lot.

        When I said 250hp, I was thinking 3S-GE with direct injection and their new valvematic. It already makes 210hp as is.
        • 8 Years Ago
        a 250 hp NA 2L 4cyl capable of taking boost would be about a $20k engine... there goes your 'under 20k'...

        a rwd 2+2 with a 1.8 or 2.0 with 140-170 hp, rack and pinion and struts up front with double wishbone and LSD out back. optional everything (no mandatory AC, speakers, roll up windows) to keep the entry weight and price down. under 2500 lbs and under 20k should be doable then. that would be an autox champ for sure.

        car design by committe, sounds like the same tactics that got the domestics into their current possition. its tough at the top.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Yes, they need to do something. The new Camry is a (failed) attempt to make interesting cars. Instead, it looks like a caricature of a car - bulbous and odd. I'll admit, it feels like a Lexus inside - quite and comfortable, but eeegads, the styling. . . And the award for realy boring goes to the Corolla - another amazing vehicle that, next to the Honda Civic, looks downright dowdy.
      • 8 Years Ago
      LOL... thus my point earlier stated in the WRX post about them adding the new grill! Toyota needs a "Committee to create interesting cars"... I guess no one has the balls to create an original design language of their own at that company so they need a committee?? Fear of making a mistake must be the overiding motivation here. They all have to sign off on the next boring design together!
      • 8 Years Ago
      Someone should send the comittee a copy of the first Gran Turismo game for Playstation, circa ten years ago. Bring back the AE86, Supra Turbo, the Chaser/Cresta/MKII family (big sedans powered by 2.5L turbo I6s), the MR2the Soarer/Lexus SC before it became a giant barge, even the Celcia (in GT4 trim it was amazing).

      1960s-1998 Toyota made some of the best Japanese enthusiast products ever. Post-Supra Toyota is now a blase collection of pseudo-Buicks and smug hybrids.
      • 8 Years Ago
      One of Toyota's biggest problems is that it doesn't make interesting engines these days. M3, Evo, STi, Civic Si, S2000, 911, 350Z, Corvette... all are very different cars but they all share one thing in common: each has a truly characterful engine.

      Totoya makes good engines, but they're pretty dull. Rarely do I read a review of a Toyota that spends more than a few sentences on the engine. Usually it's "refined" or "adequate" or "workmanlike", maybe even "strong."

      But never interesting.
        • 8 Years Ago
        now its not really fair to say that honda's engines are not interesting. they are certianly have a unique feel. sure they are torque shy 4 bangers that get poop milage when pushed hard, but they are certainly interesting. impossible to not have fun at 8k rpm no matter how small the engine. honda is the best at what they do, you and I may not be into it but some are and thats cool

        main problem with new honda performance, 140 lbs/ft is not enough for a 2800 lbs car...
      • 8 Years Ago
      Bring back the RWD Corolla! Cripes, plunk down the Scion Tc body on a shortened rear-drive (Lexus 250?) chassis, give it the pre-Prado Tacoma live axle..........

      Where's my cheque?
      Billy Ray
      • 8 Years Ago
      They could start by fixing that god-awful ugly Camry's front end . . . it looks like a bull elephant seal.

      Then, they could offer a manual transmission for their V8 trucks; something they haven't had since, oh, EVER.

      Next, offer the Corolla as a coupe. Hey, just steal the plans from your sister Lexus' IS.

      Then, look at the jillions of Mustang GTs out there. How come Toyota has no performance or pony car? And just wait until the sub-quality Challenger and Camaro come out, and there goes more market share.

      Toyota, are you listening?
      • 8 Years Ago
      Well at least Toyota has finally realized that they make nothing more than bland and uninspiring appliances on wheels. I doubt that they'll be able to create something as appealing or distinctive as the Americans, Europeans and even Nissan. Design by committee never works...
      • 8 Years Ago
      I feel like Toyota has made this talk before. They are even pretty well set up to make some reasonably sporty cars if they want to.

      I would love to see:
      1. a small RWD car, perhaps under Scion to replace the tC which would compete against the 1 series at a lower price and brings back the much beloved AE86.

      2. a 2-seat mid-engined convertible Boxster competitor. Bigger than the MR-S which was just too impractical in every way imaginable please.

      3. a replacement for the SC430 which is beyond old. Something in a sport touring GT would be great.
        • 8 Years Ago
        the mr-s was perfect sized, its not meant to be practical, its meant to be fun and it was. i miss mine. and it got 30mpg
        • 8 Years Ago
        I miss my '01 MR2 as well. I wouldn't ask for more power, just a better stock supsension (sportivo out of the factory) and about 2cu ft of storage space (bringing it roughly to 4 cu ft), just enough to throw a bag or two in. I consistantly got 30 mpg around town and 37 highway, but it handled like a go cart, and that made me not care that it was slightly underpowered. What a great car that was.
        • 8 Years Ago
        the mr-s looked better than the miata. and the miata is a girls car, haha
        • 8 Years Ago
        @keebie, why not just buy a miata and get twice as much storage space? Toyota producing a car that can only be an "extra" car was not the best way to go about justifying a niche that they want to compete in.

        I always thought it was a shame that they discontinued the Supra just as the modders market was just really heating up.
      • 8 Years Ago
      The only problem with this committee is that they currently work for Ferrari.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Toyota 1997:

      supra
      soarer
      corolla levin
      sprinter trueno
      cynos
      celica
      MR2

      Toyota 2008

      -----------------
      • 8 Years Ago
      Supra.

      Problem solved.
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