Top Gear Dropped the Toyota Supra on its Test Track and It Can Hold Its Own
The Toyota Supra’s Top Gear Lap Time Shows Us We Live In A Time Of Cars That Gained Some Insane Speed, But Lost A Lot Of Character In The Processby Safet Satara, on
The Stig of TopGear took the new 2020 Toyota Supra around the TopGear test track. The results are in, and yes, we have underestimated the Toyota Supra. It is extremely fast.
Toyota Supra managed to lap the TopGear test track in 1 minute and 23.1 seconds. This is, honestly, astonishing. It makes the Toyota Supra quicker around the TopGear test track compared to cars such as the Lamborghini Murcielago, Ferrari F430 Spider F1, and, most surprising (at least for me), the Maserati Gran Turismo MC Stradale. In fact, the GT MC Stradale achieved the same lap time eight years ago despite two cylinders and 110 horsepower extra.
How Stig Lapped The Track With The New Supra As Fast As The Other Stig Did It With The Maserati Gran Turismo MC Stradale Eight Years Ago?
With a B58 engine under the bonnet, lower center of gravity compared to the GT86, but really close to the center of gravity of the Maserati Gran Turismo MC Stradale, the Toyota Supra felt rather lively on Top Gear’s track with the Stig behind the steering wheel.
The youtube video TopGear published doesn’t show the time, but they’ve notified us about the Supra’s time in the description of it. I was rather curious to know how, for the love of all that is sacred, the Toyota Supra can be as mad as the GT MC Stradale at the track?
|01:23.0||Mercedes-Benz SL65 AMG Black Series|
|01:23.1||KTM X-Bow (Not Shown on TV) (Driven by first white Stig)|
|01:23.1||Maserati Gran Turismo MC Stradale|
|01:23.2||Porsche 911 GT3|
|01:23.3||Ferrari F430 Spider F1|
|01:23.7||Lamborghini Murciélago (retested)|
|01:23.8||Pagani Zonda C12 S 7.3 (partly damp)|
|01:23.9||Aston Martin DBS (wet)|
|01:24.0||Ariel Atom 1 220|
|01:24.0||Mercedes AMG S63|
I’ve identified a few crucial pieces of hardware that made this possible.
First of all, the Stig used a model with bigger rear brakes. That is the thing you can do too if you choose to buy the Supra. Buy the Toyota Supra Premium! The entry-level version has a bit smaller brakes in the back. While they work perfectly on the road, where you don’t need anything better, the track does require something more substantial. Some reviewers reported that the rear brake fade on the entry Toyota Supra is evident after continuous thrashing on the track. The Premium version mitigates that with bigger rear brakes. Believe me that the Stig took his time to learn the Supra well enough to lap it around Top Gear’s test track as fast as possible. Those rear brakes were hot as hell.
Apart from the better brakes compared to standard cars, the Toyota Supra had yet another significant advantage - Michelin Pilot Super Sport Tires.
They measure 255/35R19 up front and 275/35R19 in the back. BMW and Toyota tasked Michelin specifically to tailor the tires for the Supra (and Z4 of course). Now, the Pilot Super Sport is an epic tire for daily drives. It will give enough grip, handle the rain better than most, and give you a ton of fun. They will provide rather well balanced and linear performance on the track as well until they get hot. According to tire professionals and consumers, Pilot Super Sport tires work astonishingly well until they get sweltering. Then, they cannot provide adequate results. Michelin Pilot Sport Cup 2 tires would be a better choice for continuous dry track applications (like on the 488 Pista, which is the fastest on the TopGear test track at 1:12.07). In that regard, I believe that the Stig achieved the time of 1 minute and 23.1 seconds around the Top Gear track with the Supra that wore a fresh set of Pilot Super Sports’. Don’t think for a second that Top Gear don’t change the tires when testing the cars on the track. Heck, some time ago, Pagani even acknowledged that it used two sets of tires for the Zonda team tested at Dunsfold Aerodrome in Surrey. It published the time achieved with the "faster" tires, of course.
|01:12.7||Ferrari 488 Pista|
|01:13.4||Porsche 991 GT2 RS|
|01:15.1||Ariel Atom V8 500 (moist)|
|01:15.1||Dodge Viper ACR|
|01:15.7||Audi R8 V10 Plus|
If you watched the video, you might also see that Stig had his hands full with the steering wheel with the Supra. The drive did not feel seamless and composed. Well, that’s what driving at the track is all about, but I also believe that it has something to do with the very high steering rack ratio of 15:1 and slightly softer suspension setup compared with what you’d expect of a track car. Despite all that, the low center of gravity and low ground clearance (4.5 inches) enabled the Stig to get the most of that B58 engine with 335 horsepower (it is more than that, and we all know it by now).
|Engine||turbocharged 3.0-liter inline six-cylinder|
|Horsepower||335 hp at 5,000 rpm|
|Torque||365 lb-ft at 1,600 rpm|
|0-60 mph||4.1 seconds|
|Top Speed (electronically limited)||155 mph|
|Top Speed (no limiter)||175 mph (est.)|
The lap time set by the 2020 Toyota Supra on the TopGear test track tells us that we live in a time of fast cars.
Just think about it - ten years ago, you had to buy something costly and exotic to be as quick - now you have to spend something like $50,000 for 1:23.1 around the TopGear test track. As I have grown up watching the golden age of Top Gear, I can wholeheartedly say that the BMW Z4 and its TopGear lap time is astounding. I mean Toyota Supra’s time. 2020 Toyota Supra!
Read our full driven review on the 2020 Toyota Supra.
Read our review of the 2020 Toyota Supra
Read our full review on the 2019 BMW Z4.