Posts Tagged ‘toyota’

Will the Supra Name Live On?

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Ever since Toyota released a concept design that was to be the successor to the Supra, the auto industry has gone into a frenzy every time the concept rears its head. Acura came back with their NSX and Mazda doesn’t look like it’ll be reviving their RX7. So the only remaining Japanese supercar left untouched form the 90’s is the Supra. What we do know is that there is a production car in the horizons which is being jointly developed between BMW and Toyota which will revive the Supra. Only question left is whether the Supra name itself will live on.

The folks over at Toyota believes in bringing back the name as there is too much history to the Supra name to just let it die. A move in the right direction from Toyota was noticed when the company filed to have the Supra name trademarked in Europe.


New Toyota Supra

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Those of us who grew up in the 90’s remember the infiltration of Japanese supercars which contended with the likes of those coming out of Italy and Germany. This included the Acura NSX, Mazda RX7 and the Toyota Supra. All of these vehicles have long been discontinued, but some have moved on to newer iterations. Acura recently released their all new NSX. Mazda made the RX8 which never lived up to the car that was the RX7. But only Toyota remains in producing a car as a successor to their dominating Supra.

The rumor mill surrounding an all new Supra has been circulating for a while and Toyota has not denied that they are working on something. When Toyota put out the FT-1 concept a few years back, it was beginning to pave the way ahead for a design concept for the new Supra. Now there are rumors that Lexus’ new engine might find it’s way into the heart of a new Supra. Again, all of this is speculation until we see something a bit more official. That powerplant will be a twin turbocharged six-cylinder engine which recently has proven to be a potent powerplant across many automakers.


GT86 Meets Ferrari 458

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A Ferrari is designed to go around corners fast, and it is certainly not drifting through the corners. So what you have here is the closest thing to a drifting Ferrari. Pro drifter Ryan Tuerck took the heart of a Ferrari 458 and stuffed it into the belly of his GT86 creating one of the most unique and amazing mechanical creations for the drift circuit.

Drifters have long been stuffing big engines into the front of their drift cars. Supra motor swaps were eventually replaced by American V8s. Now they are tapping into a whole new category of engine conversions. The GT86’s light weight frame is a great doner to transplant a high power V8 into. Ferrari’s 458 4.5-liter V8 pumps out a very respectable 562 hp and 398 lb/ft of tire shredding torque.

One things for sure, we can’t wait to hear this car drift around the track.


Toyota Prius Gets Roof Mounted Solar Panel

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Toyota is looking to offer a roof mounted solar panel system which can help boost the vehicle’s fuel economy to as much as 10%. This is great news for those who buy a Prius who often have fuel economy as the number one deciding factor for their purchase. Toyota is looking to sell this as an option through their Japanese and European markets. However, the solar panel roof is not likely going to make it onto North American cars just yet.

The issue in the US specifically is around safety issues with a solar panel roof. Problem is there isn’t a way to manufacture the roof in such a way that prevents the glass roof and its photovoltaic cells from shattering in the case of an accident. Engineers are hard at work to develop a solution in hopes that one day the solar panel roof will see the light of day on a US destined vehicle.


Teased with More Possibilities of the Supras Return

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News about Toyota and BMW’s partnership to create a new sports car is nothing new. To share in development costs, the two major manufacturers are sharing their development dollars in designing and producing a new platform which will underpin BMW’s Z4 and Toyota’s unnamed sportscar which we all think will be the next Supra.

Although powertrain details have not yet been shared, there’s a lot of buzz around Toyota moving towards hybrid power. The future powertrain could feature a complex hybrid system combining a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine sourced from BMW with a trio of electric motors.

Although news has been quiet for a while on any new developments of the Supra, there have been some small ticks of action happening that is leading us to think something might be coming soon. Toyota recently trademarked the name Supra in Europe for use on any vehicle. The automaker took similar steps back in 2014 in the US. So that can only mean that Toyota will want to revive the Supra name at some point for their own use.


Vintage Land Cruiser Pickup Restored to Perfection

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The old adage less is more is somewhat of a rarity these days; especially when it comes to cars. Automakers seem to be cramming every bit of technology into cars these days, from sensors that keep you in your lane, to in car entertainment that rivals some home theatre systems. Ne small electric or computer glitch usually puts your car out of commission for a while at the dealers while expertly trained technicians dig into the computer spewing out a wordy diagnosis that essentially is meaningless to the normal human being.

That’s what makes this 1974 Toyota Land Cruiser FJ45 a true gem of a car. First off, if there’s something that not needed or not functional, it’s not on the car. Next up, if you break down, all you’ll likely need are some simple tools to get you back up and running. No computer diagnosis, no digital gremlins, just simple good old trusty gasoline power.

This particular FJ45 has gone through a full restoration to bring it back up to better than factory condition. A true timeless beauty, and finished in a perfectly suited Sky Blue. The FJ40 is powered by a 3.9L carbureted straight-six which makes 125hp and 209 lb/ft of torque. Fast it isn’t, but a reliable work mule it is, and a pretty looking mule that is.


Toyota 86 Shooting Brake Concept

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You mention station wagon, and the image it usually conjures up is a squared off family hauler packed to the ninth with camping gear heading off for a summer weekend from surburbia. Well, station wagons have come a long way, just ask the up and coming 604hp AMG E63 wagon, but nonetheless the demand is not improving. But interestingly, when you use a name like “Shooting Brake” in place of the station wagon nomenclature, there seems to be a bit more appetite.

Seen here is a concept rendition of Toyota’s 86 as a shooting brake which, to me, has huge potential. But don’t hold your breath as Toyota has no plans to put this more practical version of the 86 into production. The concept image shows a car with the same wheel base, but the roofline of the 86/BRZ has been extended to create the wagon rear section.

With some wishful thinking, one can hope that they may see a shooting brake 86 on the road some day. As a wagon fan myself, I appreciate the uniqueness of its functionality matched with the 86’s typical performance oriented character.


58,000 Toyota Camry and Avalon Recalled

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Toyota will be issuing a recall on 58,510 vehicles which impact both the Camry and Avalon with a model year of 2016. The issue has been identified as an incorrectly calibrated Occupant Classification System in the passenger’s side front seat. The OCS monitors the weight of the passenger and determines whether or not to turn on the air bags. With the calibration of the OCS compromised, the airbag might not go off during an accident due to inaccurate readings of the passenger’s weight.

The recall will require dealerships to recalibrate the OCS free of charge to the vehicle owners. We encourage all owners to contact their local dealership for more information.


Toyota Sienna Gets Onboard Vacuum

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When you buy a Porsche GT3, you can get red seatbelts. When you buy a Volkswagen Beetle, you use to get a vase with a flower. But when you buy a minivan, what better option to get than a vacuum! That’s right, now moms and dads can clean up after their Cheerio monsters without having to lug out the old vacuum cleaner which barely makes it across both front seats. Instead, they can grab the in car vacuum that reaches to all corners of the family hauler.

Toyota will be adding this feature to their Sienna and the Highlander. To make the system even more easy to use, the vacuum can run with the engine started without ever stopping. Once the engine is turned off, the vacuum still operates under its own stored power for up to 10 minutes. The system will come with all the attachments that will let parents clean every little detail in the car.

Happy vacuuming!


Toyota’s Rebranded and Facelifted 86 Hits New York

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As Toyota begins to transition the Scion branded FRS to the Toyota 86, they also take this opportunity to give the car a small refresh for the 2017 model year and debuted it to the public at the New York International Auto Show today. The refresh is not a dramatic change to the 86’s already attractive exterior, rather, it incorporates minor updates to bring the car up to par with current technologies.

The front facia of the 86 receives most of the updated treatment. Previously, the 86 utilized integrated lower LED lights in the bumper for additional auxiliary lighting. The bumper lighting treatment is now gone and integrated into the headlamp fixtures as LED turn signals and auxiliary lights. The front bumper now features larger side openings with integrated winglets and a subtle lower splitter design that’s integrate into the bumper. The rear of the car received less updates, but is brought up to spec with integrated LED lighting in the tail lights. The rear diffuser and bumper is kept inline with last year’s model.

The inside cabin received a refresh to give owners more ergonomics and a create an overall better place to be when behind the wheel. The instrument cluster is updated with an integrated digital diagnostic display on the right side providing vital car information. New satin aluminum trip has been integrated into the interior cabin as well which provides better touch and wear. The steering wheel no longer has leather perforation but in return drivers get more accessibility to vehicle function via new infotainment buttons.

As the Scion brand winds down and the 86 gets a new name and company logo, this year’s refresh is very well positioned to help the FR-S along its identify change to the 86.

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