Toyota GR Supra GT4 Concept Breaks Cover

When Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda unveiled the road-going fifth generation Toyota Supra at this year’s North American International Auto Show he made it clear this was heading for the race track.

He detailed his own racing experiences with the original model at Germany’s Nurburgring back in the 1980s and how the car was designed to take on the mighty Italian and German sporting models of the day. Now his dream is realized in the shape of the Toyota GR Supra GT4 concept that will make its world debut at next week’s Geneva International Motor Show.

The car is a design and engineering study that could lead to an accessible and affordable way for privateer teams to enter racing from a grass-roots level. Naturally, the car draws on the road-going car’s performance assets with balanced chassis, two-seater cabin, rigid and lightweight body, rear-wheel drive and low center of gravity. It also boasts the combination of a short wheelbase and wide track to deliver an ideal 1.55 ‘golden ratio’ stability and agility.

Racing aerodynamics include a special front diffuser and rear wing to improve airflow around the chassis, reducing drag and boosting downforce. With a nod to climate concerns, both items are constructed using composites made from natural fibers such as hemp and flax instead of the usual carbon fiber in a bid to reduce the impact on the environment.

The GR Supra GT4 Concept retains the 3.0-liter straight-six-cylinder gasoline engine with single twin-scroll turbocharger, coupled to an automatic transmission. Performance is increased with help from a motorsport-grade ECU and bespoke wiring looms. There are also motorsport-specification drive shafts and limited slip differential.

— Paul Myles is a seasoned automotive journalist based in London. Follow him on Twitter @Paulmyles_

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