If You Bought a 2020 Supra, Toyota Kind of Took Advantage of You

The 2020 Toyota Supra was praised up and down when it was launched, and yet, it always felt like it deserved better. After all, the BMW Z4 it was based on was more powerful and faster. Well, Toyota has remedied all of that for 2021 by injecting the Supra with more power, better technology, improved driving dynamics, and there’s now a four-cylinder model available. The downside? Well, if you bought a 2020 Toyota Supra, Toyota kind of stuck it to you without the thought of lube.

More Six-Cylinder Power

The 2021 Toyota Supra is Impressively Better Than the 2020 – More Power, Better Engineering Exterior
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The 2021 Toyota Supra is now available with a four-cylinder or the original BMW-sourced, inline-six. However, this time around, that six-cylinder pumps out 382 horsepower and 368 pound-feet of torque. That brings it in line with the BMW Z4 M40i (it has the same engine) and represents an improvement of 47 horsepower and three pound-feet of torque. According to Toyota, that makes it two-tenths of a second faster to 60 mph than before (3.9 seconds vs. 4.1 seconds) and, sorry to say, that you’re still limited to that eight-speed automatic transmission.

2021 vs 2020 Toyota Supra lineup
2020 GR Supra 3.0 2021 GR Supra 3.0 2021 GR Supra 2.0
Engine 3.0-liter inline six-cylinder with twin-scroll single turbo 3.0-liter inline six-cylinder with twin-scroll single turbo 2.0-liter inline four-cylinder with twin-scroll single turbo
Horsepower 335 HP @ 5,000 - 6,500 RPM 383 HP @ 5,800 - 6,500 RPM 255 HP @ 5,000 - 6,500 RPM
Torque 365 LB-FT @ 1,600 - 4,500 RPM 368 LB-FT @ 1,800 - 5,000 RPM 295 LB-FT @ 1,550 - 4,400 RPM
Transmission ZF 8-speed automatic ZF 8-speed automatic ZF 8-speed automatic
Weight 3,396 lbs 3,400 lbs 3,181 lbs
0 - 60 mph 4.1 seconds 3.9 seconds 5.0 seconds

Improved Driving Dynamics

The 2021 Toyota Supra is Impressively Better Than the 2020 – More Power, Better Engineering Exterior
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As if the Supra wasn’t already a driver’s car, Toyota also made some subtle updates to the chassis, steering, and suspension of the car as well. The shocks, aka dampers, have been tuned, which should lead to slightly improved handling in the corners and a better ride overall. The electric power steering system has been updated, as has the algorithm for the adaptive suspension, stability control, and active differential. To improve rigidity, the strut towers are now connected to the front core support (where the hood latches) via new aluminum braces.

2021 Toyota Supra Four-Cylinder

The 2021 Toyota Supra is Impressively Better Than the 2020 – More Power, Better Engineering Exterior
- image 886254

Remember when we told you that the four-cylinder Supra was the one you really want? Well, we were right….kind of. The Supra 2.0 comes with the same four-cylinder engine found in the BMW Z4 sDrive30i. It produces a turbocharged 255 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque and can hit 60 mph in as fast as five seconds flat. That’s impressive for a four-cylinder ten years ago, but it’s a common figure today. What really matters here is that the four-cylinder Supra is also some 200 pounds lighter with a curb weight of just 3,181 pounds. That also puts it just 405 pounds heavier than the current Toyota 86.

The downside is that, since the four-cylinder model is less powerful, Toyota has also removed some of the standard equipment too. Four-piston calipers have been replaced with single-piston units. Active differential and active suspension? That was cut right out too. The 14-way power seats inside? Nope, those have been replaced with old-school, manually adjustable bucket seats. Most of the cool safety features have also been ditched as has navigation, the 12-speaker audio system, and wireless Apply Carplay unless you opt for an optional safety package that has yet to be given a price.

The 2021 Toyota Supra is Impressively Better Than the 2020 – More Power, Better Engineering Exterior
- image 886255
2021 Toyota Supra 2.0 specifications
Engine 2.0-liter inline four-cylinder with twin-scroll single turbo
Horsepower 255 HP @ 5,000 - 6,500 RPM
Torque 295 LB-FT @ 1,550 - 4,400 RPM
Transmission ZF 8-speed automatic
Weight 3,181 lbs
0 - 60 mph 5.0 seconds

What Makes the Four-Cylinder Supra Worth Having?

The 2021 Toyota Supra is Impressively Better Than the 2020 – More Power, Better Engineering Exterior
- image 886243

So, outside of the drop in weight, why would you want a four-cylinder Supra that’s been robbed of all the cool active bits and safety technology? Well, the bulk of the engine’s weight is now positioned closer to the center of the car. Toyota hasn’t disclosed weight distribution quite yet, but you can’t bet it’s pretty damn close to 50:50, and the center of gravity will be impressively low too. We’re willing to bet that the four-cylinder Supra will out-handle the six-cylinder model all day long. It might not win any straight line sprints (it’s also limited to 155 mph, by the way), but when it comes to maneuvering tight roads or tracks, you can be assured that the four-cylinder Supra will hold its own. Plus, nobody will know that you’re driving the four-cylinder model as Toyota hasn’t added any special badging to it.

Revised Technology

The 2021 Toyota Supra is Impressively Better Than the 2020 – More Power, Better Engineering Exterior
- image 886239

There isn’t a lot that has changed on the technology front, honestly, but Toyota is dropping that boring, subpar 6.5-inch infotainment system altogether. Instead, all models of the Supra will come with an 8.8-inch infotainment system. A new Safety and Technology Package will bring optional features:

  • Dynamic Cruise Control
  • Blind Spot Monitoring
  • Rear Cross-Traffic Look
  • Parking Sensors with Emergency Braking
  • Navigation
  • 12-Speaker Audio System
  • Wireless Apple CarPlay

Toyota hasn’t insisted on a price for the package yet, but logic would dictate that it will come with a price tag in the area of $2,000 - $2,500.

If You Bought a 2020 Supra, You Kind Of Got Screwed – There Won’t Even Be a Retro Fit

The 2021 Toyota Supra is Impressively Better Than the 2020 – More Power, Better Engineering Exterior
- image 886258

Okay, so I know that the multiple dyno tests and test drives have hinted that the 2020 Supra Might be Faster and more powerful than rated. However, Toyota is still standing by the original figures announced in 2020. During the 2021 Supra’s launch, the Supra’s Chief Engineer, Tatsuya Tada, said that retrofitting could be done, but won’t be done.

“You could theoretically add the components to get the increase, but there are a lot of sensitive software components you’d have to change”

And, it honestly makes some sense. Toyota has, apparently, upgraded the engine rather thoroughly, including:

  • New Pistons
  • Lower Compression Ratio
  • Suspected Boost in Turbo Pressure
  • Six-Port Dual-Branch Exhaust Manifold (up from two ports)
  • Significant Software Updates
The 2021 Toyota Supra is Impressively Better Than the 2020 – More Power, Better Engineering Exterior
- image 886261

So, the truth is, even if Toyota was willing to retrofit the 2020 models of the Supra, they would have to tear the entire engine apart, and you’ve probably already paid enough for a model that, obviously, wasn’t as good as it should have been, to begin with.

It kind of makes us wonder if Toyota intentionally took advantage of people by releasing the Supra at less-than-stellar potential just to make it impressively better the following year to increase sales momentum. I don’t know about you, but if I bought a 2020 Toyota Supra, I’d feel like Toyota took advantage of me.

2021 Toyota Supra 3.0 vs 2020 Toyota Supra 3.0
2020 GR Supra 3.0 2021 GR Supra 3.0
Engine 3.0-liter inline six-cylinder with twin-scroll single turbo 3.0-liter inline six-cylinder with twin-scroll single turbo
Horsepower 335 HP @ 5,000 - 6,500 RPM 383 HP @ 5,800 - 6,500 RPM
Torque 365 LB-FT @ 1,600 - 4,500 RPM 368 LB-FT @ 1,800 - 5,000 RPM
Transmission ZF 8-speed automatic ZF 8-speed automatic
Weight 3,396 lbs 3,400 lbs
0 - 60 mph 4.1 seconds 3.9 seconds
Robert Moore
Editor-in-Chief and Automotive Expert - robert@topsped.com
Robert has been an auto enthusiast his entire life. He started working cars at a young age, learning the basics from his father in the home garage on the weekends. As time went on, Robert became more and more interested in cars and convinced his father to teach him how to drive when he was just 13 years old. Robert continued working on cars in his free time and learned as much as he could about engines, transmissions, and car electrical systems, something that only fed his curiosity more and eventually led him to earn a bachelors degree in automotive technology with a primary focus on engine performance and transmission rebuilding.  Read More
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