With its recent sales results putting Toyota at a five year high, the company seems to be getting its mojo back. Its driving enthusiast president Akio Toyoda has made no secret for his passion for driving and was the force behind the development of the new GT 86/Scion FRS. But his plans for Toyota-branded sports cars are not expected to stop with the launch of the GT 86.
Drive recently spoke with the chief engineer of the GT 86, Tetsuya Tada, who reaffirmed that there is indeed room in Toyot's sports car plans for a three-tier line-up. A new compact sports car could find a niche sitting below the GT 86, while a performance leading spiritual successor to the iconic Supra would sit above it. Rumors of a revived Supra have been circulating for a while now, although it seems unlikely that Toyota will revive the Supra badge.
More details have emerged about the powertrain for the new Toyota "˜hero' car. Already thought to be powered by a 3.5-liter petrol/electric hybrid engine, it is now expected that this will be mated to the continuously variable transmission from the Lexus RX Hybrid SUV. Output is said to be north of 400 horsepower, distributed to the rear wheels by the petrol engine with the electric motor powering the front wheels.
At this stage, the new successor to the Supra is still tracking for a 2015 launch. As for the sub-GT 86 model, no leaks have yet surfaced. The extremely positive reaction around the globe for the new GT 86, coupled with Toyota's financial revival well under way and a boss passionate about driving, it seems Left Lane will be brining you more news on the next generation of Toyota sports cars sooner rather than later.