The Toyota Supra has a long racing heritage. World Rally Championship, touring car racing, Super GT – the Supra did it all. So it was inevitable that the new A90-gen Toyota GR Supra would go racing, as well. A GT4 race-spec ‘concept’ was shown at the Geneva Motor Show earlier this year and Toyota has now confirmed that it will reach race tracks in 2020.
GT4 is the entry-point to international GT racing. The race cars are closely based on their road-going counterparts and the field is incredibly diverse. Everything from the KTM X-Bow to the Ford Mustang and Audi R8 compete. A Balance of Performance system equalises the speed of the cars to make sure no one manufacturer runs away at the front of field, sparking a very expensive development war.
As such, the fundamentals of the Supra GT4 remain the same as the car available in your friendly neighbourhood Toyota dealer. So it’s just as controversially BMW-based, sharing its rear-wheel-drive chassis and 3.0 twin-turbo 6cyl engine with the Z4.
In standard guise, the GR Supra produces 335bhp and 369lb/ft of torque. The Supra GT4’s motor will be upgraded to race spec, but the output will be determined by the BoP process, though it’ll likely make a fair bit more power than standard.
The standard automatic gearbox has probably been dumped in favour of a racing sequential unit.
GT4 regs allow the suspension and brakes to be upgraded to cope with the rigours of racing. A front splitter and rear wing of a regulated size and shape have been added to the Supra GT4, as well. It rolls on 18in wheels and features all the necessary safety upgrades, including a substantial weld-in roll cage.
Inside, the standard BMW-sourced dashboard has been ditched for a simpler and lighter carbonfibre item featuring a pair of info displays. Even the steering wheel has changed, becoming a butterfly-type racing ‘wheel’ with many buttons to control various vital functions.
Design and development has been a collaboration between Toyota Gazoo Racing and Toyota Motorsport GmbH. They worked with Ravenol on the engine lubricants, Pirelli on the tyres and Akrapovic on the exhaust.
Prices will be announced in due course – we anticipate somewhere between £150,000 and £200,000. That’s a big chunk of money but, as the GT4 category depends on customer teams, the cars are designed to be as robust and cost-effective to race as possible. There are dozens of race series around the world that will accept the Supra GT4 and it should be capable of racking up tens of thousands of racing miles without complaint.
By Graham King