Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda with BMW CEO Norbert ReithoferEnlarge Photo
Late last week BMW and Toyota made the surprise announcement
that the two firms would work together on developing the architecture and components for a future sports car.
However, apart for some praise for each other's engineering prowess, few details on the future sports car were revealed.
BMW acknowledged that Toyota was a leader in green technology and that this would play a part in the automaker’s future.
Toyota, on the other hand, touted BMW’s strength in developing sports cars and said this would add some excitement to its cars.
The lack of any further details has left many wondering what the two automakers have planned, but now we have some new details gathered from people close to the project.
A spokesperson for BMW has revealed to Automotive News
(subscription required) that at least two sports cars will be developed, one for BMW and one for Toyota, and they will feature their own, unique styling as opposed to simply changing badges and bumpers like Toyota did with the GT 86, Scion FR-S and Subaru BRZ clones.
The spokesperson went on to reveal that the BMW model will be a sustainable sports car with environmentally friendly technology, and that BMW will be developing the architecture and components.
It’s been reported that Toyota is keen to launch
a spiritual successor to its Supra sports car but with a mid-engine layout, hybrid drivetrain and all-wheel drive configuration. This has led some to suggest that BMW may offer the platform of its upcoming i8 plug-in hybrid
to Toyota for use in the new Supra. However, given the expected pricetag of the i8 and the high-cost of its technology, Toyota may end up using the platform for a new Lexus sports car instead, possibly a production version of the stunning LF-LC concept
"Anything is possible," a senior BMW manager explained to Autoweek
. "The key factor is that the products of both companies retain their own individual character, despite jointly developed technologies."