The long road to the reveal of a new Toyota Supra is almost over.
Toyota on Tuesday at the 2018 Geneva International Motor Show not only confirmed the comeback of the Supra nameplate but also rolled out a concept that closely adheres to the lines of the fifth-generation model due in showrooms in the not too distant future.
Yes, strip away the oversized wing and pumped fenders of the GR Supra Racing concept on show in Geneva and you have a close representation of the production-bound model still testing in prototype form around the globe. The “90” emblazoned on the side is a nod to the new Supra's A90 internal code. The previous-generation Supra was the A80.
2019 Toyota Supra spy shots - Image via S. Baldauf/SB-MedienEnlarge Photo
The concept, which is relatively compact at 180 inches, makes extensive use of strong but lightweight composite material for most of its body, while the windows are made from plastic to further save weight. The wheels come from BBS and house a set of Brembo brakes. Another partner is OMP, which supplied many of the internal elements including the harnesses and quick-release steering wheel.
Toyota says it chose a race car theme for the concept to highlight the potential of the new Supra on the race track. No doubt we'll see the car serve as the basis of Japan's Super GT touring car series. There are also rumors the new Supra might serve as the basis of a Toyota entry into the production-based classes of the WeatherTech SportsCar Championship and World Endurance Championship, which includes the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
But first we'll have to see the new Supra and not just another concept. Recall, Toyota has been teasing us with concepts since the reveal of the FT-1 concept four years ago. The good news is that the new Supra is at a late stage of development. It is being developed on a platform Toyota has designed with BMW, which is using the platform for a new Z4 sports car, and in the Supra there should be a variety of powertrains including a high-performance hybrid setup. A reveal could take place as early as this month's 2018 New York International Auto Show.
In the United States, the new Supra will almost certainly be marketed as a Toyota product. However, in other markets we could see it sold under the recently established GR performance sub-brand. GR was introduced last fall, initially in Japan, to link Toyota's Gazoo Racing efforts with road cars.
Cars from the GR sub-brand fall into four performance categories, and it is expected that the same will be true for the new Supra. GRMN is the range-topping option. It stands for Gazoo Racing Masters of Nürburgring, and cars classified as GRMNs can be compared to top offerings from the likes Subaru's STI and Mercedes-Benz's AMG divisions. The first GRMN model is the Yaris GRMN. Could the Supra be next? We can't wait to find out.
For more from the Geneva auto show, head to our dedicated hub.