Should we wait for the Manual Transmission Supra? Update: Tada-san says no to MT?

KahnBB6

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2018
Messages
692
Reaction score
992
Location
Florida
Car(s)
'93 Lexus SC300 5-speed 2JZGTE R154 LSD
Tada also told us what not to expect: There will be no manual transmission, despite an outcry in parts of the enthusiast community over the lack of a row-it-yourself shifter. His advice: "Customers who want a manual should choose the Toyota 86."
A couple of problems here: it's not the A90 chassis, doesn't have the B58 turbo engine, doesn't have ANY turbo engine and doesn't and will not have the same horsepower rating as the Supra A90 3.0L

Not very helpful "advice" for people actually interested in a manual Supra rather than an 86/BRZ.

A quick spin with Tada-san behind the Supra's wheel confirms its legitimate sports car credentials. And it makes me want more of the higher-performance future variants he hints at. He smiles: "We have many ideas."
And among those "many" ideas is not a single version of the car with a manual transmission? Hard to believe there are many ideas at all if even one manual model A90 isn't among them, despite the rumored GRMN and GT4.

he wants demand to be STRONGER
I'd like to believe that but how else at this point is that demand to be proven to Toyota execs? Was the global outcry to date not enough already to make a case for it? Was the outcry from the U.S. Supra crowd not enough? I guess not.

I've said it before... Toyota, Akio Toyoda and Tetsuya Tada have only the next few years to even be able to offer a manual transmission A90. At a certain point even Aston Martin and BMW will not be able to even on their couple of holdout enthusiast models... a future threshold (all around electrification) that I will, at that point in time, understand. But right now there is this window during which a manual A90 can be offered.

Hopefully you're right Bryster and hopefully PerformanceSound is right but from this article the tone seems to have changed.

I love this car but if Tada-san's words truly do stick (pun intended) then the BMW M2 Competition 6MT just became far more interesting. In a number of years, when there won't be any more new stick shift sports cars at all then all such cars will be equal, all having automatics or in some cases no transmissions at all.

The efforts of Joel Grannas to custom swap in a BMW M2/M3/M4 compatible manual transmission or Tremec T56 Magnum 6MT into the A90 chassis will still have my interest but for those of us in strict smog locales like California that will still be a no-go no matter how nice the swap since you won't be able to smog a manual swapped car that nonetheless shows up in CA smog testing computers as "Supra 3.0L 8-speed AUTOMATIC". Not to mention the ECU will probably be throwing many OBD error codes with the ZF8 transmission missing.

Aside, it's nice that he's more or less confirming that the 86/BRZ will continue to offer a manual transmission in this and the next generation. That's also a great car in its own right.

It's just not, of course, the same thing as an A90 Supra. The 86 has neither the A90 chassis or its engine. It's a wonderful car but it's something entirely different and not in the same league.
 
Last edited:

Oxytal

Member
Joined
May 11, 2019
Messages
23
Reaction score
43
Location
Philippines
Car(s)
MR2 SW20
Something else interesting I got from the article was that before the Supra/Z4 BMW wanted a successor to the i8. Certainly would have made for a very interesting sports car.

A shame Toyota isn't pursuing a 6MT. It probably wasn't going to make up the R&D on one through sales.
 

KahnBB6

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2018
Messages
692
Reaction score
992
Location
Florida
Car(s)
'93 Lexus SC300 5-speed 2JZGTE R154 LSD
^^ But Toyota and BMW already did the initial prototype R&D on manual versions of the Z4 and Supra A90 a long while back. That work has been logged already.

At least one Toyota engineer spoke on the record about introducing a manual A90 Supra at least for the Japanese market and other nearby RHD markets only last year. Even if that manual R&D was only on the 2.0L turbo variants it's still a manual A90.

Of course the 3.0L B58 is the one everyone wants a manual in.

It's just a very disappointing thing to hear about a very special car in Toyota's lineup that actually makes the MOST sense to offer a manual transmission option for, aside from the 86.
 

Oxytal

Member
Joined
May 11, 2019
Messages
23
Reaction score
43
Location
Philippines
Car(s)
MR2 SW20
^^ But Toyota and BMW already did the initial prototype R&D on manual versions of the Z4 and Supra A90 a long while back. That work has been logged already.

At least one Toyota engineer spoke on the record about introducing a manual A90 Supra at least for the Japanese market and other nearby RHD markets only last year. Even if that manual R&D was only on the 2.0L turbo variants it's still a manual A90.

Of course the 3.0L B58 is the one everyone wants a manual in.

It's just a very disappointing thing to hear about a very special car in Toyota's lineup that actually makes the MOST sense to offer a manual transmission option for, aside from the 86.
If they already did the work for the 6MT, then it must have been a manufacturing problem? My guess is introducing another production line for a manual is more disruptive than differing production lines for engines.
 

s219

Well-Known Member
First Name
Doc
Joined
Jun 22, 2019
Messages
502
Reaction score
577
Location
Virginia USA
Car(s)
BMW X3 M40i, BMW M2 Comp, Honda S2000
Not very helpful "advice" for people actually interested in a manual Supra rather than an 86/BRZ.
Especially those of use who already owned an 86 and moved on. 86 was a great car and better than the Supra in some ways, but not in the same league overall.
 

s219

Well-Known Member
First Name
Doc
Joined
Jun 22, 2019
Messages
502
Reaction score
577
Location
Virginia USA
Car(s)
BMW X3 M40i, BMW M2 Comp, Honda S2000
If they already did the work for the 6MT, then it must have been a manufacturing problem? My guess is introducing another production line for a manual is more disruptive than differing production lines for engines.
Engines and transmissions are mated and attached to a powertrain far upstream in the process and joined to the car on the same production line. In fact, BMW/Magnasteyr will interchangeably mix different model vehicles on the same line in arbitrary order, with completely different powertrains. So transmission wouldn't affect that at all.
 

samoht

Member
First Name
Tom
Joined
Jun 30, 2019
Messages
11
Reaction score
5
Location
Cambridge, UK
Car(s)
'96 RX-7
This may be a slightly cynical view, but I'm imagining Toyota are looking at the number of enquiries and the length of the waiting list for deliveries next year, and thinking that the current 'buzz' and mark-ups will soon fade, and they're not going to achieve their sales targets next year. The C8 Vette has stolen the press limelight at a fairly close price point, and they'll soon have satisfied the initial audience.

In this case, it would make sense for them to try and 'shake the tree' and see how many people who are waiting for a manual, they can persuade to buy in. They're looking for those who are interested, but thinking 'but I'd be gutted if I bought an auto now, and then next year they release a manual', to reassure them they'll have nothing to regret and may as well sign up.
 

zakira

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2016
Messages
110
Reaction score
316
Location
USA
Car(s)
5, JBH D09, Metro, Uber and Lyft :(
The C8 is already going to hurt Supra sales. They just want to cut their losses.
 

CSUfiend

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 9, 2017
Messages
98
Reaction score
235
Location
CA
Car(s)
Lexus GS400
I just hope everybody who is hating on this car actually goes out and buys a C8 (or a Model 3, or a Camry for all I care).

That means Supra’s won’t be on every street corner and it means you can get a sweet deal on one pretty soon.

Of all the people hating on this car and pumping up the C8, I bet 80% drive (and will still continue to drive) some crappy crossover, average sedan or 15 year old beater car, and would have trouble even getting a test drive for a C8 anyway. With the way people talk about the C8, you would think it’s gonna become a Camry when it comes out because it’s gonna beat up Porsche’s, Lamborghini's, Toyota Rav4’s and everything and anything in between.

Newsflash: It’s not. It will be a bargain performer (which it already has been for decades now) that will continue to sell as well. It’s “base price” will be $60,000, but it’s average transaction price will be >$70,000 (even more in its first model year because people will rush to get one), which will go down in subsequent years. It will be the final nail in the coffin to the Camaro (when people say it will kill the Supra, Z4 or Cayman, it WON’T, and instead, it will kill the Camaro more so than any other car) It will steal some Mustang sales (Won’t “kill” the Mustang, Mustang has enough loyalists for it not to be “killed”). It will steal some Supra sales (see my description above for the Mustang). It will steal some Cayman sales (see Mustang description as well). It will be most popular with Corvette loyalists. No, it will not steal Ferrari or Lamborghini sales. And no, 80% of those hyping it up won’t even be able to afford one until the year 2031. I don’t think even half of those folks would be prequalified for new 4cyl Mustang.

People in general like to talk But put very little substance behind their words. If you read any car website, you would think sports cars ruled the world and crossovers barely exist. If you’re gonna buy a C8 because you think it’s a great car, I feel happy for you! If you’re gonna hype up the C8 and say that it’s the best car, but end up getting something other than the C8 (whether it’s Toyota RAV4 or a 1996 Honda Civic) then your opinion has no value.

If only half of the people hyping up the C8 actually get one, it will compete with Camry’s, Rav4’s, and F150’s. But it won’t. Not even close.

It’s because of people like this that all manual transmission cars are dying. They are “cool” when you read an internet message board and has the seal of approval of keyboard warriors, but no one bothers to buy one. This is why automotive marketing departments and firms continue to ignore the enthusiast community, because they are afraid that people are not gonna put their money where their mouth is. And statistics and sales figures show that they are correct, unfortunately.
 
Last edited:

s219

Well-Known Member
First Name
Doc
Joined
Jun 22, 2019
Messages
502
Reaction score
577
Location
Virginia USA
Car(s)
BMW X3 M40i, BMW M2 Comp, Honda S2000
When you look at the take-rate of manual in loosely related cars, it would seem high enough to justify it in the Supra, and this is based on sales data so we don't have to speculate or theorize about what people say versus do.

Subaru BRZ - 78%
Toyota 86 - 33%
BMW M2 - 40% **
Subaru WRX - 90%

** I roughly averaged M2 numbers over both gens; keep in mind it offers an excellent DCT option, which likely draws more people away from the manual than typical.

That said, so far the Supra is being well received with an automatic, with only a small vocal outcry regarding the lack of manual, so consider that some data to the contrary (ie, Supra is already successful without manual).

One interesting point -- a lot of amateur reviewers are lauding the Supra's ZF8 auto, but the way they describe it makes me think they have no prior experience with B58/ZF8 powertrains in BMWs, so some of those impressions are based on newness and inexperience and the fact that they didn't know what to expect. To me it's every bit as good as what I've come to expect from other "M40i" BMWs, which also means it's still not a substitute for a good manual in my mind. The fact that folks may not know what they are missing with a manual Supra clouds the picture.
 

Supra Guy

Well-Known Member
First Name
Frans
Joined
May 17, 2019
Messages
107
Reaction score
99
Location
NJ USA
Car(s)
VW GTI
If the autos are selling well which they are, I don’t see why they need to add it at this time. Perhaps maybe if the sales go down they’ll offer it to boost their sales.
 

AsupramkvC

Well-Known Member
First Name
Gerich
Joined
Nov 10, 2018
Messages
371
Reaction score
375
Location
Philippines, USA, Japan
Car(s)
86
In an Autoblog interview up today, the chief engineer indicated that " There will be no manual transmission, despite an outcry in parts of the enthusiast community over the lack of a row-it-yourself shifter. His advice: 'Customers who want a manual should choose the Toyota 86.'"

So MT fans have now been given the official Toyota finger.
Boo, so no manual, after all. :thumbsdown:

What about an electric version of the Supra, is it possible?
 

KahnBB6

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2018
Messages
692
Reaction score
992
Location
Florida
Car(s)
'93 Lexus SC300 5-speed 2JZGTE R154 LSD
If the autos are selling well which they are, I don’t see why they need to add it at this time. Perhaps maybe if the sales go down they’ll offer it to boost their sales.
Offer only an automatic transmission in a hyped and popular sportscar and more sales means to execs that no one wants a manual anyway. Less sales means to execs that the car as whole is a failure.

There is no good and perfectly clear way to get the message across to Toyota execs that great first year sales in automatic-only just means that pent up demand for the car is being met after some nearly twenty years. Similarly there is no good and perfectly clear way to get across to Toyota execs that hypothetical low first year sales would mean that not everyone is satisfied with the automatic-only situation.

Offering a manual option on the 3.0L Supra would only happen anyway with strong A90 sales.

Boo, so no manual, after all. :thumbsdown:

What about an electric version of the Supra, is it possible?
It's possible to make ANY car electric, the A90 included. Will Toyota offer that in this generation? I don't think so at all. Tada-san stated before that he really wanted a tuneable, durable I6 3.0L turbo engine with great sound. He doesn't even want a hybrid Supra in the A90 generation although I am sure there is technically a way to do it via a variation of the ZF8 8HP automatic transmission.

But to me, a HYBRID A90 would be a reason not to offer a manual A90. I could understand that even though I completely prefer a manual transmission. The entire industry and all sportscar and musclecar offerings are going to be hybrid-gas-electric or pure electric in a few years anyway.

Toyota will eventually, at some point in the future, do a hybrid Supra. Maybe with the A100 once battery and ultra-capacitor technology have matured a lot more to the point that extreme weight, driving range, overheating, fire and performance degradation issues are no longer things that would go against what the Supra should be capable of off the showroom floor and over years of use and repeated hard driving.

But since they aren't doing that now, not offering a three pedal manual while it is still totally feasible for them to do so is extremely disappointing on their part. I did expect better of them with this last pure gasoline Supra that is supposed to be a pure driver's car and enthusiast machine rather than a numbers-chasing R35 GTR competitor.

This leaves, for those in strict emission states like California, the only manual option being one of a very expensive full driveline swap from an M2/M3/M4:

Buy a 2020 Supra at whatever the MSRP + ADM will be. Then buy a 2020+ BMW M2 Competition FULL engine, FULL emission system, FULL engine wiring harness and ECU and the 6-speed manual transmission from that car and any driveshaft and possibly differential bits. Or ALL the same parts from a 2020+ BMW M3/M4 6MT.

Remove the entire Supra B58 engine, emission system, ZF8 automatic, driveshafts, and possibly rear differential.

Then spend a lot of time and money figuring out how to fit ALL of the BMW M2, M3 or M4 driveline, manual transmission, differential, emissions parts, electronics, wiring and ECU and make it all play nice with the Supra A90. And fabricate a custom manual shifter bezel for the center console if the Euro Z4 2.0L Manual parts never become available.

That's a lot of work that Toyota could save us from having to do. But assuming everything fits that is the only way to get a Cali smog passing 2020 Supra with an I6 turbo engine and a 6 speed manual transmission. And with that it means never getting to keep the B58 that Toyota specifically went over for their car.

Having recently done the 90's technology equivalent of that kind of very thorough Cali smog passing (the officially allowed way) 2JZGTE manual swap into my SC300... the prospect of having to do the same thing with a 2020 Supra just to get a manual transmission wouldn't be worth it to most. The car JUST came out.

Not when they can just buy any other comparable sportscar that already has a manual transmission available.
 

Advertisement





 


Advertisement
Top