It’s not every day you’re given the ‘OK’ to wander around the HKS workshop where the company’s new demo and race cars are built, camera in hand. But when you do, there’s a very good chance you’ll stumble upon some interesting new things, which is exactly what happened during our recent visit.
The title has given it away, but before I get into it, let me explain how this opportunity came about in the first place…
After shooting the three HKS A90 Supras that will be displayed at the Tokyo Auto Salon later this week, Ron and I were told there was actually a fourth Supra in the build inside the workshop. As it turns out, this was the same car that I drove back in May last year, but now looking very different.
This is Manabu Orido’s toy, a pre-production car that can’t legally be registered for street use, hence why it’s become the basis of a very interesting project. In fact, HKS nor Orido actually know what route the development of this car will take, they are just playing it by ear and figuring things out along the way.
For now, the car has been fitted with the full US$10,000 HKS wide-body kit and a dry carbon front spoiler, and wrapped in the iconic Yokohama Advan colors.
The Supra was on the lift so one of the HKS R&D mechanics could fit a new set of extended suspension arms to take full advantage of the aero package’s width. You won’t find any hub adaptors, spacers, or exaggerated offsets here.
Could this be the making of a time attack build? New Project Mu 6-pot front and 4-pot rear calipers with 2-piece floating rotors delivered the morning of our visit are another hint that things are being taken quite seriously.
It was at this point that I looked down and noticed something very familiar, yet different. I’m a great fan of Yokohama Advan Neova AD08Rs, but what was fitted to the Supra’s 20-inch Advan Racing GT wheels was a version of the Neova that I’d never seen before.
There were no homologation or weight rating marks on the sidewall; it was all smooth with branding that simply read ‘Advan Neova Concept’.
I wasn’t supposed to be seeing these, and definitely not taking pictures of them.
HKS’s Saito-san saw me looking at them, told me to wait, and then walked off while looking for a contact in his phone. He returned minutes later giving me a thumbs up, saying that Yokohama were happy for me to shoot the prototype tires and show Speedhunters readers. Now that’s pretty cool!
As you can see, the beefy 305/30ZR20s have a recognizable AD08-like pattern on the outside shoulder, but the inside has a different tread design.
Orido’s Supra will be on display at the Yokohama Tire booth at Tokyo Auto Salon fitted with the new wheel/rubber combo, but that’s all we can really say about it right now. I’ll leave the rest to your imagination…
So that’s TAS 2020 Supra #4, and the doors haven’t even opened yet.
Dino Dalle Carbonare