The chief engineer for the upcoming Toyota Supra says the new sportscar will likely be the Japanese brand’s final present to “those who enjoy hearing the pleasing sound of a pure petrol engine at high revs”.
Speaking to Toyota UK’s official blog at the recent Goodwood Festival of Speed, chief engineer Tetsuya Tada hinted that increasingly strict regulations would kill off the purely petrol-powered sportscar in the near future.
“Looking at the current automotive industry, the talk is all about autonomous driving, electrification and artificial intelligence. What that’s doing is giving rise to a lot of strict regulations, and that limits our capacity to make emotional sportscars; it’s getting much more difficult to do that,” Tada explained.
“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,” he added.
Tada, who was also the chief engineer of the GT86, said that he had been working on the Supra project for “nearly seven years”. He added that the new Supra would boast an even lower centre of gravity than the GT86, while its body rigidity would be “twice that of the GT86”.
“It’s actually the same level of rigidity as the Lexus LFA supercar, and it has been achieved without using carbon-fibre so we could keep the price point at an affordable level. That was the most difficult thing to achieve,” he explained.
The new Supra, which was developed alongside the upcoming BMW Z4, is expected to hit the market in the first half of 2019.
Toyota has already confirmed that it will be powered by an inline six-cylinder (likely BMW’s single-turbo 3,0-litre B58B30 engine, in this case worth 250 kW), while recent reports suggest an entry-level version will employ the German automaker’s turbocharged 2,0-litre B48B20 four-cylinder engine, sending 195 kW to the rear wheels.