The Supras of SEMA 2019

The introduction of the Mk5 or A90 Toyota Supra has been the most controversial car release that I can recall.

The majority of that controversy seems to have stemmed from the fact that Toyota are using an awful lot from BMW’s Z4 to make the Supra.

On one hand, I understand people’s frustration. The Supra is a legend in the Japanese car world, so to simply re-body a BMW and call it a Supra is doing that legend a disservice.

On the other hand, I understand Toyota’s choice to use the Z4 so extensively. BMW are the only company that really mass produce straight sixes now (the Supra has always had a straight six) and the B58 used in the Supra is a few years old now and reliably makes 335hp from factory. It would be a big gamble for Toyota themselves to develop an engine to put in the car. Would it survive the test of time?

Whether or not you agree with Toyota’s decisions on how to build the Mk5, a lot of the legend of the Supra has stemmed from the aftermarket. The Mk4 in particular was an incredibly popular car to modify!

The automotive aftermarket world has really taken the new Supra under it’s wing. There were 43 examples at SEMA this year!

Toyota themselves knew that there would be a lot of potential buyers of the new Supra at SEMA, and thus had a lot on their own stand. Some were factory standard cars, others were limited edition cars and others were factory race cars.

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There was also a Supra NASCAR which, really looked nothing like a Supra. Fantastic bit of kit though, I must go to watch these run at some point.

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Behind the Toyota booth were a set of doors which led to a little parade of Supras just outside.

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The ground effects on the white car below were particularly well done. Personally, I think they look really nice with the splitter, skirts and more pronounced diffuser. There were quite a few examples with Rocket Bunny/Liberty Walk style extended arches, which I really don’t think the car needs.

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All rules have an exception though, as I really liked the look of this car in the Toyo Tires Treadpass. (That tunnel was a car show unto itself. Expect a blog about it soon.

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The first Supra to have been manual converted. Another criticism of the factory car is that it isn’t available as a manual. I’m sure this conversion will prove popular.

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There were a few more tastefully modified examples scattered about the show.

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Parked next to the last red car was this immaculate twin turbo fourth gen:

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There weren’t many Mk4s at the show, which surprised me. The only other one I saw was Dan Burkett’s Formula Drift car.

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There were a lot more Supras at the show which I didn’t get a picture of. Did you have a favourite from the show? Let me know in the comments!

Thanks for reading!

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By Richard Francis

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