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Toyota ‘GR Supra’ Is More Fun With A Four-cylinder Than A Six-cylinder!

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  • GR Supra released in 2019
  • GR Supra released in 2019
  • GR Supra released in 2019
  • GR Supra released in 2019
  • GR Supra released in 2019
  • GR Supra released in 2019
  • GR Supra released in 2019
  • GR Supra released in 2019

The “SZ-R” is more fun on downhill winding roads!

The GR Supra released in 2019 is one of the cars created in collaboration with BMW. The car’s line-up includes the RZ with a 3-litre straight-six engine and the SZ-R and SZ with a 2-litre straight-four. The RZ looks better when you look at power and displacement alone, but did you know that the 2L straight-4 model is also surprisingly well-regarded? We explain why.

The straight-4 model is about 50 kg lighter

Toyota’s GR series has an extensive line-up, including the GR86, GR Yaris and GR Corolla. The flagship model, the GR Supra, is also a Super GT competitor, but for some reason, it is overshadowed on the streets. …… It is a sibling to the BMW Z4 and is produced by the Austrian company Magna Steyr, so it is somewhat of a domestic product. However, the Supra RZ is approximately 1.5 million yen (approx. 10,000 USD) cheaper than the Z4 M40i, and when you think about it calmly, it can be said to be a bargain-priced car.

Now, the GR Supra comes in two models: the RZ with a straight-six engine and the SZ-R/SZ with a straight-four engine. The straight-six engine has a displacement of 3 litres, while the straight-four has a displacement of 2 litres, so if you compare their dynamic performance alone, the straight-six RZ has 387 hp and the SZ-R has 258 hp. However, depending on where the car is driven, the SZ-R may be superior, so it cannot be said that the RZ is simply a better sports car.

Because the 3L straight-six engine is powerful but heavy, while the 2L straight-four engine is underpowered but compact. In the FR GR Supra, where the engine is mounted in the front, the weight of the engine has a significant effect on driving performance. Comparing the straight-six B58B30B and straight-four B48B20B engines on a standalone basis, the straight-four is approximately 50 kg lighter.

BMW sports cars traditionally have a 50:50 weight distribution between front and rear, but it is the straight-four SZ-R that achieves a 50:50 weight balance in the GR Supra (the RZ also has a 50:50 weight distribution, but that is when people are in the car). The ‘SZ-R’ has a lighter nose and remains nimble despite its 1460 kg weight.

Tetsuya Tada, who was in charge of the GR Supra’s development, himself commented as follows.

“Over the Alps, the RZ and the SZ-R were very close.”

With 50 kg less weight at the front, the SZ-R obviously turns better, has faster cornering speeds and can even accelerate more aggressively on the SZ-R because it has the same width tyres despite having less power (the RZ has 19-inch tyres, the SZ-R has 18-inch, but the taller The SZ-R is more aggressive on the accelerator (the RZ has 19-inch tyres, the SZ-R 18-inch, but the taller tyres provide more traction and allow for more steering effort). At least on downhill winding roads, the SZ-R is guaranteed to be more fun to ride than the RZ.

Although the chassis may look big, the GR Supra’s wheelbase-to-tread ratio of 1.55 is smaller than the Ferrari 458 Italia’s 1.58, making it quite a cornering machine in its own right (the Lotus Elise is 1.53)! If you want to make the most of its qualities, the lighter front straight-four model is better, and if you want to enjoy it as a pure RWD sport, the SZ-R is the better choice.

from AMW

If you want an in-line four-cylinder that’s light on the nose and fun to wind down, the SZ-R and SZ are the current choices, but only an eight-speed AT is available in the line-up. The BMWs, too, were more fun to drive with an inefficient straight-four with an MT rather than a powerful straight-six, and it would be nice to see a straight-four + MT combination in the GR Supra too. Is it just a car enthusiast’s nonsense to wish for a straight-four + MT combination for the GR Supra too?

translated by DeepL