It’s been a while, Supra.
In January of 2019, Akio Toyoda stood on the stage in Detroit. The throngs of media packed into the room knew what was coming and there was heavy anticipation. The Supra was back.
“They say all good things come to those who wait, even a really long time,” he said. “And now, finally, the next chapter in the story can begin!”
The Supra was officially launched in the US on the first day of 1979. With a 110-hp 2.6L six-cylinder engine, this offshoot of the popular Celica started at just over $10K. Five inches longer than the Celica, the Supra also included air conditioning, an AM/FM radio, and the option to add a sunroof and cruise control.
Alas, Toyota ceased production of the Supra in 2002, as demand waned; they had put the kibosh on exporting this sleek sports car.
Fun Fact: In 2001, Paul Walker drove a 1993 Supra stunt car in the first “The Fast and the Furious movie”. The characters worked it over and tweaked it until it was so fast that it beat a Ferrari on the street. It later sold for $185,000 at auction.
A race car for every day
“I’m sure for each of you there’s been at least one car in your life that you have a particular attachment to, one car that holds a special place in your heart and for me, the Supra is it,” Toyoda told the crowd in Detroit last year. “Back in the day my old Supra and I spent countless hours together as I learned to become a master driver. But you can imagine the teasing and stares that I got from all the other manufacturers at Nürburgring, who were driving their beautiful new prototypes while I’m out there driving what felt like an automotive version of Charlie Brown’s Christmas tree. I mean it was a great car but you know, a guy can only take so much!”
Toyoda told the crowd that the brand had no plans to make a new Supra, but diehard Supra fans around the world clamored for its return.
Why choose a Supra?
After taking it on an extended test drive three and a half hours across the state of Texas, I get it. The Supra is highly addicting and it’s plush inside, sharing some DNA and a platform with the BMW Z4. As F1 driver Fernando Alonso says, it’s like a race car you can drive comfortably every day.
It’s wonderfully loud, so don’t think you’re going to sneak up on anyone in a Supra. It’s not afraid to burst into the space with flair and attitude. That means there is some road noise inside, but it’s not terrible. Storage space is surprisingly ample for such a small car, and the designers found ways to make every inch count.
What you need to know
- The Supra is a two-seater; leave the kids at home and take this one out on date nights or commute the office
- Turbocharged 3.0L six-cylinder engine (335 horsepower, 365 lb-ft of torque)
- RWD and automatic are the only options
- Standard features include 19-inch wheels, remote start, dual-zone automatic climate control, leather and simulated suede seats and upholstery, power front seats, 6.5-inch touchscreen, and a 10-speaker audio system
- Standard safety features: auto emergency braking, lane keep assist, and auto high beams
- Highly recommended: upgrade to the Navigation + JBL package for an upgraded 8.8-inch touchscreen with navigation, along with Apple CarPlay and a 12-speaker JBL audio system
The first cassette I ever played in a car while I was driving was Guns N’ Roses’ Appetite for Destruction. It felt so empowering to drive my own car and pressure from my right foot found the top range of the accelerator more often than I care to admit. As I was driving the Supra, this is the song that ran through my head: