Well, all two of them.
This whole situation is quite comical. Think about this for a second: Up until January we’d been teased over and over again by Toyota and the countless camouflaged A90 Supras it paraded around the world at motor shows, events, private showings, and drives for selected members of the press. It got to the point where everyone was like, ‘get on with it, enough with the teasing, just show us the car under those vinyl wraps.’
Fast forward two months and we are on our way to getting bored with the new car, and there’s still seven months to go before it’s even set to go on sale (in Japan at least). First, it was ‘no we can’t show it to you just yet’, now it’s ‘here are a couple of 2JZ-powered drift cars.’
I feel confused. Don’t get me wrong, it’s cool and all, but it’s weird.
Since I’ve already given you a quick look at the inner workings of Daigo Saito’s car, let’s kick off this A90-centric post with Masato Kawabata’s Pandem-kitted Supra of Team Toyo Tires.
I dropped by the D1 Grand Prix Exhibition round in Odaiba on Saturday morning, and found out from the Toyo guys that Kawabata was not allowed to drive his car that day as Monster Energy was the main sponsor of the event, and the limelight was reserved for Daigo’s car.
The series is a shambles at best, and those behind it keep trying to invent new ways of managing it, without much success. But I digress… I was here to check out the Supras, not the competition itself.
Kawabata’s car was still being worked on the day before and was about 90% there. But that wasn’t a bad thing, because it showed off Miura’s aero kit in contrasting primer black. It was cool to see how the aftermarket kit interacts with the Supra’s factory lines.
The base Supra has a shape that I still can’t quite digest. You could almost say it’s out of proportion, bulbous in places and over-designed in some areas. It’s strangely narrow, too, and the wheelbase is shorter than the 86’s. It works in some angles, not much in others, but there’s no questioning it’s a good canvas for tuners to get working on.
Like Daigo’s Supra, Kawabata’s also employs an Endless braking system at each corner.
The highlight of the day for me was meeting Tarmo Liivamägi of Wisefab, along with the engineer charged with developing the front and rear kit for the new car.
While shooting Daigo’s car I did wonder how the hell these guys were able to create Wisefab front and rear links, front spindles and rear arms so quickly. It turns out that while Miura was 3D-scanning the car, he did a few passes inside the wheel arches and sent the data over to Estonia.
Although there’s a very small margin of error with such data (~0.2mm), everything bolted up beautifully and worked great with minimal adjustment. Tip of the hat to these guys, they continue to bring out some incredible products.
There’s no issues with the A90 being overly narrow and compact now that it’s running the Pandem kit. Miura didn’t hold back when it came to the width of the rear fenders and the way the JZA80 TRD-inspired (at least to my eyes) rear wing integrates into the hatch.
The wider hips work wonders with the overall proportions and make the car look far more aggressive. That’s something the stock, untouched version lacks a bit in its attempt to come off more elegant than loud and in your face.
Without a doubt, this is the best angle.
As is the case with Saito’s car, the Toyo Tires car’s radiator lives in the rear, but it’s more cleanly laid out with a series of 45-degree louvers helping direct air towards the core.
I’m sure Miura has a few more ideas and possible variants to his first A90 kit, and I can’t wait to see a ducktail version of the rear end treatment.
You can kind of imagine how it would flow so well.
We weren’t allowed to see the interior in detail, nor the engine, only for the fact that it’s not totally finished yet. It’s now back in the workshop undergoing a complete tear down, where things like painting the shell with its bare steel roll cage will be done, not to mention a few licks of paint for the exterior, too.
That said, it’s pretty cool to see a car that’s still seven months away from production already built for professional drifting.Daigo & His Hot Supra
Over in the Saito/Monster Energy pit, things couldn’t be more secretive.
The car was brought out for a couple of exhibition runs…
… and then immediately backed up into the dark tent.
With the Pandem kit now fitted and painted, plus the complete livery in place, the car was looking far more presentable than it was when I checked it out a couple of weeks back at HKS.
The car suffered a series of mechanical issues throughout the weekend, including a small fire during Friday’s practise.
Despite the immense stress of bringing the most important car build of his drift career to completion, Saito was looking relaxed.
Our old friend and ex-Speedhunter Casey Dhnaram of Shirtstuckedin was at Odaiba with Nakamura and his team, and sent over this picture from Sunday when the car caught fire again. I’m sure the team will sort out the issue and be in fighting form for this year’s D1 comp.All The Specs Of The JDM Supra
Next up, it’s the Gazoo Racing Supra that you’ll be able to buy in Japan this October, right when the government bumps sales tax up two points to 10%. Nice move, Toyota.
But what to say about it all? Well, it’s beautifully put together, it smells far more BMW than Toyota, but then again that’s no surprise. I’ve given up caring about this and actually think it’s great that this car materialized.
The interior looks a tad cramped, but the materials used are far more upmarket than what you will find in a Toyota 86 or Subaru BRZ. It’s not on par with say a Porsche Cayenne Coupe, Audi Q8 or Lamborghini Urus interior, but it’s way better than that of an Mazda MX-5 or Fiat 124.
See what I did there? Think about it…
The seats look pretty sick, very Lexus in their design and color combination, not to mention the metal-look trim built in under the headrests. There’s no way you can pass 4-point harnesses through those openings, though.
That little rubber toggle/roller is the exact same one I have in Project Drop Top. I know this as I fondle it every day, and after four years of daily use it still doesn’t look worn. So that’s good; the switchgear will last and it’s far more tactile than what Toyota’s overly-conservative design team might have come up with.
For over a decade now I’ve complained about bland interiors in Japanese cars, saying they should be more like their German counterparts. I guess I got what I wanted.
The Frozen Silver finish on this car is another very ‘BMW’ thing, but boy does it help to highlight the lines. Like I touched on earlier, this is one of the best angles the Supra has to offer.
And yes, it’s begging for a proper drop, something that would fill in that admittedly not too bad fender gap. I really can’t wait to see what people do with these cars; I’m sure the stance guys will go wild.
Fake door vents? Yes, another thing that will no doubt be addressed by the aftermarket.
The rear end works well, it’s clean and this 3.0L RZ model will get the more aggressive lower bumper section, too.
On the subject of models, I must tell you about the three different versions that will be offered – here in Japan, at least.
First up is the SZ, featuring a 2.0L four-cylinder engine with twin-scroll turbo kicking out 145kW (194.5hp) between 4,500 and 6,500rpm. That number might not sound too exciting, but the engine produces decent peak torque of 320Nm (236lb-ft) available between 1,450 and 4,200rpm.
Sitting in the middle of the line-up will be the SZ-R with a more powerful 2.0L four-cylinder engine and twin-scroll turbo developing 190kW (255hp) between 5,000 and 6,500rpm. This version also boasts a 80Nm hike in torque, maxing out at 400Nm (295lb-ft) between 1,550 and 4,400rpm.
The top-of-the-line model is the RZ, featuring the B58 3.0L straight-six fitted with a twin-scroll single turbo. The numbers are pretty exciting: 250kW (335hp) developed between 5,000 and 6,500 rpm with 500Nm (369lb-ft) coming in between 1,600 and 4,500rpm.
No manual transmission option will be offered in Japan at launch, only the ZF 8-speed automatic.
What do we all make of this Supra? Are we excited it’s here?
I’m honestly beyond discussing whether it’s cool or not, I just want to try it out for myself and, better still, see what tuners will be able to do with the B58 straight-six, as well as the four-banger which we shouldn’t really dismiss as a crappy option.
Dino Dalle Carbonare
Since the B58 is still new engine in the market..they still develop the perfomance part for the B58..cant wait to see more what other car builder do out there soon..
I get that the inline 6 from Toyota is the prefered choice for drifters given its reliability, but I really hope that future Supra owners will embrace the B58 engine, since I´m really tired of this whole 2JZ swapping fest. I also agree that the Supra looks a bit too busy, but it´s growing on me. By the way, is that an old dashboard (from an S13?) in Kawabatas Supra ?
I don't hate the car, but I don't love it either, but its actual problem, what is killing it, in my opinion is the way Toyota has been managing it since the beginning, here's why;
First of all, Toyota dropped an insane concept car five years ago, yeah I know concept cars never end up looking like that in their production versions, but still, first impressions caused high expectations, and expectations that high, after five years can only keep getting higher, so, I do believe that Toyota dug the car's grave from the very beginning.
Second, after five years, it just seems lazy that the car is basically another car, I know I'm not an expert in car development, but, really? After five years, all they could do was take someone else's car?
Third (or second and a half), giving it the supercar treatment, I mean, not even BMW is making a limited edition and taking deposits for buying candidates for the actual car, WHY WOULD TOYOTA DO IT? I mean, it's not like it's a super rare crazy machine, no, it's a car built by ANOTHER COMPANY with a pretty standard setup, stop hyping it like it's the last of the V12s or the first of the V13s.
But that's just my opinion.
what is a V13, you cant make a V13 you could but it would be ineffcient and stupid. what are you gonna do glue a single cylinder for the back?
No man, it's obviously a V engine with a 7 cylinder bank and a 6 cylinder bank.
It's called either sarcasm or exaggeration, however you want to see it.
Maybe the 13th "cylinder" is an electric overrun circuit that adds an extra pop of power, like an electric nitrous shot
I feel like Toyota hasn't learned how to properly tease a car. Look at their EXTREMELY drawn out affair of teasing the 86. Years and years, minor tweaks here and there...people got bored of it. They sadly did the same thing with the Supra. While both cars have certainly suffered the same fate of having these truly unique and amazing things as a concept, and then getting what we got was disappointing. Now the 86 is a cheaper car so that's a little more acceptable.
You can't resurrect your most popular name and hope that the name alone will carry it through. The FT-1 had some major cool factor and more-so what you should expect when a company brings back an icon. What we got, although it's nice, it's disappointing. Although the A80 had a somewhat bland interior, the shape and how it wrapped around the driver was something. When I look at the interior of the A90, all I see is BMW. And not to offend, but I find the lines of the dash to be so bland. It's a kitchen counter with an LCD screen stuck in it.
toyota didnt want to build a supra at all, toyota was basically bullied and told they have an "old car" watch the videos, so therefore he made what you wanted not what toyota wanted. cant bitch and moan you made him take on a project that didnt even have the original people who made the 2jz supras working on it, thats the problem everyone wants a redesign of a modern car but they dont hire the original people who had the original vision or the original skill. its madness, thats like hiring Micheal Schumacher to drive a 747.
Another sad reminder I've seen on this car...the fake honeycomb grill inserts. If you're going to put a hole in something, put a hole in something. The sad air vents and scoops just remind of the early 2000's Mustangs with all their fake inlets.
Anyone else notice that daigo put overfenders on his overfenders? look at the last pic of the white one and then the third pic of his car, im going to say that he had some clearance/rubbing issues.
It would be neat to one day see these bolt on over-fenders go away and somebody actually make a seamless widebody again. I am getting kind of worn out on seeing these cheap looking over-fenders.
You can always flush the bolt on holes.
I answer your closing questions with your opening line of the essay...
More people should be warming up the B58 and not be so phobic about it. It's one thing to yearn for a 2JZ engine because we, the tuning world, know it so well and what it can do. But remember, the B58 was developed with the diesel and petrol models in mind, in that they share the same engine block. A very robust closed deck design to keep at bay the higher cylinder combustion pressures that diesel engines see. Translate that to great starting point for a built up engine. I'm sure we'll see more fueling options to piggyback the DI system most likely with port injection to supplement the factory set-up. And you know more fuel, plus more spark, and more boost, equals a bigger bang. Change is a good thing!
Nothing against the B58, but these guys know the 2JZ inside out. The MKV Supra just came out, remember that detail, performance parts will be developed for this engine, let's just see what the aftermarket industry will develop for the new engine.
its one thing to want a 2jz, its insanity to use the same thing over and over again and then bitch why car culture is dead, people need to stop moving on from whats easy to whats hard and has not alot developed for it, thats how aftermarket tuning circles are made, the rich young kids in vest in a car/ motor, parts get made trickle down affect. honda didnt have anything when it started, it was a shitty little 78 1.5L. now you can mkae 5 6 7 8 from it, if we dont follow that mantra and develop things for it, nothing will happen and people will fall back on engine swapping thus repeating the cycle of sameness over and over again.
leave the past in the past its time to move on.
Wow I didn't know they would finish so soon
I give my props to Daito-san and Masato-san
Really can't wait to get the new Supra
I would do a 1JZ swap
I hate those fake door vents, the whole plastic door section just looks wrong from a manufacturer. I know they did what they could, but I wish there was another way.
I'm no fan of the Mk. VI here, but I love how the new bodywork contrasts the factory panels. It says MODIFIED.
I say don't paint it - leave the new panels in primer. There's just something about a half-finished project that looks better than a shiny new coat of paint.
WHAT? NO ONE LIKES THE BMW ENGINE THAT'S ALREADY INSIDE IT?
Y'all realise no one will care if its an SZ or an RZ right? A lot of people will be doing engine swaps in this car that it will just be referred to as a Supra. Plus, i think the Pandem kit should come with the car from the factory. Like Dodge did, the Demon and the Hellcat Redeye's flares look like Liberty Walk flares for models prior to 2017.
A car like this with no manual option is a disgrace.
In (almost) anything, got it own set of pros & cons. For me, Daigo speak & think on competitive level & fuse it w/his own aesthetic & the ease to work on mentality(eg:2jz. Just like ur prev post,boss
I wish they would of come out with a manual version for launch. Even if you include it in the lower trim as a experiment to see if it's worth putting in the higher trims I would've been okay with. Something is better than nothing.
I agree with the rear being the best part of the a90 exterior. hopefully either Toyota will listen and give it a facelift or the aftermarket will have an answer.
hello phil driftworks, swap a S85 innit!
My issue with 2JZ A90s is it’s almost too easy. The aftermarket product line is massive and tuning for any spec is made simple thanks to the community’s wealth of experience. I want to see tuners work with the given B58 and make of it what they can. Develop that engine to its ultimate performance rather than copy paste the successes of the past.