Upcoming Toyota Supra to be Gazoo branded

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Words: NIle Bijoux
24 Oct 2017

The Supra name and branding was confirmed by the president of Gazoo Racing.

Speaking to Motor1 at a Tokyo Motor Show preview event, Gazoo Racing president Shigeki Tomoyama said that "the Supra will be by Gazoo."

Gazoo is Toyota's performance wing that takes care of the manufacturer's motorsport activity, including both their World Rally Championship and World Endurance Championship teams. They are also responsible for creating the Toyota Yaris GRMN (Gazoo Racing tuned by Meisters of the Nurburgring), but it looks like they are expanding their portfolio.

The Supra will be the flagship and is possibly the current worst kept secret in the auto industry, expected to make an official showing next year. The car will share DNA with BMW's Z4 revival, although both will be strongly differentiated. Right off the bat, the Supra will use a fixed roof and adopt the coupe style rather than the Z4's roadster look and convertible roof. The Supra is also reportedly aiming at the performance of the likes of BMW's M3 and M4 and the Porsche 911.

 "The Supra will be a pure sports car," said Tomoyama. "To start, we must meet the expectations of our long-term fans. The previous Supra had a straight six engine, twin turbochargers and rear-wheel drive. These were important elements." We'd think Tomoyama knows what he's talking about, as he owns a 600hp (447kW) carbon fibre-clad '97 Supra himself.

Toyota president, Akio Toyoda, has tested the vehicle and gave feedback on the suspension - asking it to become "more mobile" but still controllable.

Tomoyama confirmed the new Supra will have a 50:50 weight distribution, but would not discuss actual weight numbers (rumours are pegging it between 1,200kg and 1,500kg). Regarding a hybrid setup, he said that "hybrid technology will be necessary for the future sports car. It’s not just about prioritizing efficiency, but speed too. The key challenge we need to overcome is controlling the energy flow, the regeneration and keeping the weight low."

Other rumours and leaks about the Supra unofficially confirm the use of a V6 and a manual gearbox, but other sources are claiming the car will use Toyota's first ever dual-clutch transmission.

Expect more details as 2017 wears on, and as the Tokyo Motor Show gets underway.

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NZ Autocar

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