As soon as I saw the thumbnail, I needed to watch this new video from Top Gear. I’ve driven both cars, the Toyota Supra and Toyota GR86, but about two years apart, so while I have an idea which car is better, I’m probably not the best judge. Why am I talking about a comparison test between two Toyotas? Because the Supra is essentially a BMW Z4 under its skin. Also, the Supra is the only way you can get either a BMW B48 or B58 engine with a manual transmission in America.
I’m a bit of a Toyota Supra (BMW Edition) apologist. I wholly acknowledge the fact that the new Supra lacks any sort of character of its own and just feels like a Z4 coupe. My thing is, though, I really like the Z4. So driving a coupe version that looks a helluva lot better is actually a pretty cool thing. Plus, it now gets a manual transmission, to pair with its excellent BMW engines, something the Z4 does not. So I’m very excited to see how it performs, especially against one of my favorite new sports cars, the GR86.
I recently reviewed the Toyota GR86 and absolutely loved it. I’m genuinely contemplating buying one because it’s that good to drive (although, I can’t shake my desire for old German crap-cans). So when I saw that Top Gear put the GR86–my vote for the best new sports car of 2022–up against the manual Supra, I certainly took notice.
The Toyota GR86 is way down on power, with just 228 horsepower from its 2.0-liter naturally aspirated flat-four, compared to the 382 horsepower from the Supra’s 3.0-liter turbocharged inline-six. The Supra also lunches the GR86 in a straight line, is far more capable on track, and has a cabin that feels BMW-like in quality. However, the GR86 is significantly lighter, sits lower to the ground, has a shorter wheelbase, and is far more nimble. Which car is more fun to drive? I know which I’d choose but check this video to find out which TG would choose.