Quietly confirmed at the State of the Motor Industry Conference last month, Toyota has announced that the eagerly awaited manual Supra will make its official South African market debut in August before going on sale soon after.
A confirmation that ended almost four years of speculative reports, and even public denouncing by Supra Chief Engineer, Tetsuya Tada, the three-pedal Supra is expected to be offered as an alternative to the current eight-speed automatic, though it remains to be seen whether both will be offered at the same time.
In a response to The Citizen, Toyota stated that the row-it-yourself Supra will be displayed at the Kyalami Festival of Motoring that runs from 26 to 28 August, and coincide with the debut of the upgraded 285 kW 3.0-litre turbocharged straight-six engine confirmed at the beginning of last year.
Available in the North American-spec Supra since 2020, the BMW-sourced B58 engine retains its torque output of 500 Nm, but propels the Supra from 0-60 mph (96 km/h) in 3.9 seconds versus the 250 kW model’s claimed 4.1 seconds.
It remains to be seen though how the manual ‘box will affected the benchmark sprint time, though the limited top speed of 250 km/h is unlikely to change.
Along with the more powerful engine, the Supra benefitted from a recalibrated electric power steering system, revised Vehicle Stability Control and a retuned Adaptive Variable Suspension.
However, it remains to be seen whether the changes in question will be applied to the manual version or even carried over to the South African-spec model.
At the same time, Toyota reaffirmed that a decision regarding the entry-level 2.0-litre Supra has not been taken as it could potentially overlap with the new GR86 that will make its public debut at the Festival of Motoring as well.
Originally planned for introduction in the first quarter of this year, the GR86 will go on sale in the third quarter with price and spec still to be finalised.
What is known though is that it will derive motivation from the new normally aspirated 2.4-litre FA24 flat-four Boxer engine shared with the Subaru BRZ, though retuned from 170 kW to 173 kW with torque unchanged at 250 Nm.
Despite Toyota not divulging the GR86’s top speed, which reports have alleged is around 240 km/h, it did confirm a 0-100 km/h sprint time of 6.3 seconds for the models equipped with the six-speed manual gearbox. A six-speed automatic is again optional with both set to be offered locally once sales kick-off.
Expect more details about the GR86 and the Supra to be revealed in due course.