Toyota drops hints on the Supra's torque, weight, and stiffness

'It will be the most fun-to-drive car in its class'

  • Image Credit: Toyota
We have a few more details in the excruciatingly slow drip of information on the coming Toyota Supra. The carmaker's UK blog published an interview with the coupe's chief engineer, Tetsuya Tada, conducted at the Goodwood Festival of Speed. Tada's been shepherding development of the car since 2012, saying the lengthy gestation was because "we wanted to make absolutely sure it was right." This kind of being right means the Supra has a lower center of gravity than the Toyota 86, as well as a wider track and a shorter wheelbase than its junior sibling. And without needing to use the futuristic carbon weave of the Lexus LFA, Tada said the Supra's body has around the same stiffness as that erstwhile supercar.

In an interview with Autocar at the same event, Tada alluded to a torque figure "on a par with that which we have with the F-Series from Lexus." That means something in the range of 389 pound-feet, the torque output from both the Lexus RC F and GS F. The 5.0-liter V8 in the Lexus coupe and sedan makes that figure between 4,800 and 5,600 rpm.

The Supra won't have as much weight to push around, though, Tada pegging the Supra as "around 200-300kg lighter than the F-Series." The RC F weighs 3,958 pounds, the GS F rings in at 4,034 pounds. The big number everyone expects (or wishes) the Supra would hit is 1,500 kilograms, or 3,300 pounds. That only works if you subtract the 300-kg figure from the lower RC F weight, which would put you at 3,298 pounds and seems like a best-case-scenario. Perhaps the four-cylinder Supra will do it.

According to the engineer, there's a good chance that the Supra will offer the last non-hybrid powertrain in a Toyota sportscar. Stricter regulations will make emotional, non-assisted sports cars too difficult, so, "I think the new Supra will be the last present from Toyota to those who enjoy hearing the pleasing sound of a pure petrol engine at high revs."

Tada accepts that the Supra might not convince those hoping for a modern evolution of the last car, especially with the experience of AE86 lovers to the new Toyota 86. "I know there are hardcore owners of the previous generations out there and it may be hard to convince them just by introducing a new car." Even though it's been stressed that driving experience takes priority over outright performance specs, he said "we've tried to aim for the Supra to offer an overwhelming superiority in all attributes," and that "I believe that when it goes on sale next year it will be the most fun-to-drive car in its class."

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