1991 Toyota Supra Reviews

1991 Toyota Supra Turbo 3.0 turbo from North America

Model year1991
Year of manufacture1991
First year of ownership2008
Most recent year of ownership2011
Engine and transmission 3.0 turbo Manual
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 4 / 10
Comfort marks 8 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 4 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
6.3 / 10
Distance when acquired140000 miles
Most recent distance167000 miles

Summary:

Absolute bliss to own, but not really recommended as your only form of transportation

Faults:

Fuel pump; my fault due to running it low on fuel often.

Engine main bearings, previous owner had used too light an oil (5W-20), and told me that's what it took, should not have trusted him.

Turbo, between the previous owner and me, it saw its fair share of abuse :-) I fully expected it to go.

Ignitor.

Coil pack.

Cam position sensor.

Speedometer no longer works, I believe I had something to do with this, because it stopped after I took the cluster out one day to fix some false readings.

General Comments:

Besides the listed problems, it has been a fantastic car. I believe part of the reason mine is so unreliable is due to the mods that have been done to it, including:

3 inch turbo back exhaust.

Bigger front mount intercooler.

Intercooler hard piping.

Blow off valve.

Lexus AFM.

Boost controller.

All in all, it was sitting right about 400hp without having to open up the engine; not many cars can do that.

After the original engine blew, I replaced it with a used engine imported from Japan, so it did not have EGR or the upper cat converter, and replaced the head gasket the RIGHT WAY (metal head gasket and torqued to 75ft-lbs instead of 50 like Toyota says).

Made it into a rocket, and with the exhaust I could be heard for literally miles, and the sound from the turbo is to die for.

Gas mileage was terrible, but that's due to my driving; having such a high performance car, it's hard to drive slowly all the time.

Driving it is really an experience to be had; it feels planted no matter what speed, always has more than enough power, but it's easy enough to control that if it does get away from you, it's not a deadly situation.

Speaking of which, this is one of the SAFEST cars I have ever seen.

Seriously, this thing is built like a tank. If you take the front bumper off of most cars, they have some foam and a thin square of steel to protect you, they are designed to crumple under force.

The Supra on the other hand weighs as much as most full size trucks, and with that weight comes a lot of metal between you and anything dangerous, which is nice in a car that will put the rear tires in the next lane at over 60mph.

Overall, it has been one of my favorite cars.

Refined interior.

Ample power.

Easy to upgrade.

An all around great car.

It can get a little expensive if you take it some place to have it serviced, as it can be rather difficult compared to your average American car, so it really pays to learn to work on it yourself, plus you know that everything is done RIGHT, as opposed to taking some random greasy stranger's word for it, only for it to blow up in 4000 miles.

Only downside really is the reliability, especially if you start to do work on it, so it would not be very wise to have it as your only vehicle, because it may leave you stranded somewhere, and I only run mine on 93 octane fuel from Shell, so it may mean going a bit out of your way for a fill up; worth it for the protection and engine cleaning that 93 offers.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 9th December, 2011

1991 Toyota Supra Turbo 3.0 turbo from North America

Model year1991
Year of manufacture1991
First year of ownership1998
Most recent year of ownership2001
Engine and transmission 3.0 turbo Manual
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 7 / 10
Comfort marks 9 / 10
Dealer Service marks 2 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 4 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
6.2 / 10
Distance when acquired89000 miles
Most recent distance141000 miles
Previous carToyota Corolla

Summary:

Owned 13 cars. The Supra is my favorite hands down!

Faults:

New engine at 90K miles (1 month after purchase).

New radiator at 120K miles.

Head gasket blew at 125K miles (35K miles on the new engine).

New engine at 128K miles (3K miles after fixing the head gasket).

General Comments:

Lots of repairs above, right? Sounds like a nightmare. Well.. in a way, it was. But looking back now, I see that it really wasn't the Supra's fault (Yes, the Supra has feelings).

Here's the deal. I don't think it really needed a new engine at 89K. But I had bought a 3rd party warranty with my purchase, and I think the Toyota dealership wanted to take advantage of that. The warranty company gave them hell about it, but I did indeed get a factory Toyota engine installed ($5,700 bill) and only paid the $100 deductible. I figured I was on top of the world. A Supra turbo with a brand new factory engine!

I used full synthetic always, but I got the performance bug (it's VERY hard not to with this car's performance capabilities, and what aftermarket tuners dangle in front of you).

I added full 3 inch exhaust, down pipe, test pipe (to replace the catalytic converter), intake, blow off valve, full racing suspension with the best components (cost just over 2 grand for the whole setup). I added 17 inch Japanese racing wheels and Nitto tires. By the time I was finished, the car was AMAZING!!! Somewhere around 300 hp or so, but felt so much stronger. I would CRUSH C4 Corvettes and Mustang Cobras on the freeway. It handled like it was velcroed to the ground, which is amazing for a car its size.

Then the engine started smoking again and the head gasket blew at only 35K miles. BUT!! Any studied Supra owner knows that the vast majority of repair shops do NOT know what they are doing with this car. The head gasket must be done correctly or it won't hold. If done correctly, it will hold forever and can take 400+ hp easily.

The Toyota dealership used the silly and woefully inadequate factory settings for head torque. Losers.

Then the repair shop that fixed my head gasket did the same thing at 125K miles. I was not informed at the time. They also didn't repair it correctly, as the engine 'failed' again at 128K. This was according to the same dealership that put the engine in (What can I say? I was a kid. I was naive). I know now that they just wanted another engine job.

Well.. I wrote Toyota a very well worded letter, asking them to stand behind their product. They didn't have to. The engine was way past the 1 yr 12K mile warranty. But son of a gun.. Toyota responded to my letter by giving me a brand new factory engine. I just had to pay the labor (about 2K). So I did.

Sold the Supra at 141K miles and I've missed it ever since. Other than the engine issues, my Supra was incredible, and actually quite reliable. The original turbo NEVER gave me a single problem. It was perfect from 89K to 141K. Car was at its peak when I sold it.

Svelte. Smooth. Luxurious. Fast. Highly modify-able. Way ahead of its time.

The MKIII Supra Turbo is a largely misunderstood machine by those who don't know it intimately. But go check out Supramania.com and you will see that it has a fiercely loyal cult like following, like no other car from that era.

I sold it in 2001. And in May 2011, my brother snapped a photo of it on the road. Same custom wheels and everything! It's still going strong 10 years later!

I just bought another white 91T 5spd with 68K miles in MINT condition, and I am garaging it until I am able to build it to perfection with virtually no expense spared.

My new MKIII Supra may very well become one of the best in existence!

The Supra Lives!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 29th September, 2011

Average review marks: 7.0 / 10, based on 13 reviews