You can't escape the omnipresent four-cylinder.
Toyota’s latest splash was with their nearly-ready A90, and all-new, Supra. As we might be overly familiar with by now, the car is a compact-ish two-door coupe that’s co-developed with BMW and their Z4 Roadster, and it made its first high profile appearance at the 2018 Goodwood Festival of Speed.
Sadly, as you can see, it was draped in a wrap designed to camouflage the more detailed aspects of its exterior. The interior, too, was mostly covered up, which is a shame since there can’t be much that would surprise us at this late stage in its development.
We also know that, because of its tie in with BMW, the Supra will again use a turbocharged straight-six engine, though this time plucked from the Munich automaker’s inventory and likely to be a B58 3.0-litre unit with a twin-scroll turbo that’s good for a healthy 250kW and some 500Nm.
A common pairing to the BMW-sourced motor is the ZF-8HP eight-speed automatic transmission, and that too is slated to be tasked with sending power to the Supra’s rear axle. While enthusiasts lament the confirmation of a manual alternative (so far), a silver lining has emerged from documentation from ZF themselves that shed some light into the possible other engine options coming for the sporty Toyota.
Discoveries made here, which detail where the 8HP transmission will be deployed in over the course of 2018 for both production and pre-production models - and first reported by Road & Track, have revealed a second engine pairing. And, to no real surprise, this turns out to be a B48 unit from BMW; a 2.0-litre inline-4 turbo-petrol destined for lower tier variants of the all-new Supra.
In the same way that the 3.0-litre unit’s outputs do not stray far from the tune, so too should the smaller 2.0-litre, meaning it’s safe to expect the entry-level A90 to have at least 180kW and 350Nm on tap. Overall, it’s respectable performance that definitely puts in a rung higher than the Toyota’s other 2-door coupe, the 86.
According to Tetsuya Tada, the Supra project’s chief engineer, who confirmed the existence of a four-cylinder version of the car (and likely from launch), the smaller engine does have some key advantages. Tada-san said that the four-pot features better weight distribution and a sharper turn-in thanks there being less weight and inertia to affect the front end.
Now then, dear Toyota, since we know plenty about the A90 Supra, may we please drop the pointless camo and have a look at the finished car already? Also, please confirm that we can easily swap in a 2JZ if the BMW motor isn’t to our liking.