1997 Toyota Supra Twin Turbo 3.0L TT
Fast car if you have the money to throw at it
Idle air control failed, fuel pump relay failed, torn motor mount replaced, new coil packs, control arms replaced, shocks/struts replaced.
The Toyota Supra is probably every import enthusiasts or ricer fanboy's dream car, with a close second being the NSX. Everyone is pretty familiar with the basics this car is known for, such as making impressive numbers on the dyno and its top-heavy pull on the open road. It's true, these cars are fast. In stock form, the performance is still impressive, but dated with the cars out in the last decade. However, most people don't buy a Supra and leave it stock. They want the power, after all!
The 2JZGTE is a pretty bulletproof engine. The bottom end can take a lot of abuse along with the head. The Getrag 6 speed is also a great transmission. With relatively moderate work, you can easily make over 500rwhp. That being said, there are some negative attributes to take into consideration.
Parts and upgrades for these cars are EXPENSIVE. You can easily sink a mortgage into building these cars. Fanboys will name-drop names like Ryan Woon or talk up the 900-1200rwhp Supra they saw on some YouTube video. But I can promise you they had a lot of money to throw around, and tens of thousands of dollars went into the engine alone. This all not counting the initial cost of the car to begin with, which in the U.S. a 6 speed Supra is not going to be had in respectable shape for under 25k. Might get lucky, but they generally seem to run in the 30k+ range.
That is the biggest downside to the otherwise great Supra: You have to pay to play. Compared to say the LS1, there are not nearly as many vendors for parts and parts are not nearly as plentiful. If you don't do your own work, you pretty much have to live in or within driving distance of a major city with a shop that can work on the 2JZ. Where I live, I have to drive all the way to Dallas, Texas just to find a reputable tuner. Other than that, I do my own modifications and they are still costly compared to some other cars out there that can be had.
The build quality is pretty good on these cars. The fit together well and age well. It's very much a Toyota. Insurance isn't as much of a killer, at least in my case compared to say a Mustang. You will definitely get noticed. Particularly by boys in their Hondas, Eclipses, Cobalts, name-your-4banger-car. Fortunately, the Supra does not give off a 'ricer' vibe. But that doesn't mean the ones that do will leave you alone. You have to wonder what they are thinking.
Handling is very good, particularly with some adjustable coilovers. The powerband of the 2JZ is very.. lopsided. Particularly the later VVTI engines. If you have the stock twin turbos, lag isn't so bad from a stop. If you've gone single turbo (many do), the lag feels like a lifetime. Off-the-line acceleration is rather lackluster. These cars are top-heavy cars and the acceleration is unbelievable after 2nd gear and 3,000rpm.
Overall, the Supra is a car you have to love or you will hate it, particularly since you'll be spending some money on a car that's over a decade old. You will need a good sum of money for the Mark 4 Supra, particularly if you are dreaming big on power. It's well built, it's fast, it has the potential to be faster. Unless you just HAVE to have one, I'd consider shopping around to get your fix, especially if you are on a budget.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Don't Know
Review Date: 25th August, 2011