If it’s accurate, Toyota has some explaining to do.
Pretty much everyone agrees the 2020 Toyota Supra is a very good sports car with exceptional performance. That’s not to say there isn’t controversy surrounding it, from the extensive BMW connection to the amount of power its 3.0-liter turbocharged I6 produces. When the car launched, BMW even altered its performance stats on the Z4 because Toyota claimed the Supra was just as quick with less power. But did it really have less power?
Keep that question in mind, because we suspect that particular controversy might extend into the 2021 model year. Car and Driver recently strapped a 2021 Supra to a chassis dyno for some testing, and frankly, the result borders on unbelievable. That is, not unbelievable in the sense that the boosted inline-six isn’t capable of making such power. Unbelievable that, if the number is accurate, Toyota would actually underrate the car by such an amount.
That’s enough teasing. If you haven’t watched the video yet, the 2021 Supra developed no less than 388 horsepower (289 kilowatts) at the rear wheels. Mind you, Toyota rates the 3.0-liter engine as having the same 382 hp (285 kW) at the crankshaft as its BMW Z4 twin.
The 2021 Supra developed no less than 388 horsepower at the rear wheels.
Figuring a conservative 15 percent driveline loss though the Supra’s eight-speed automatic, this figure suggests the 2021 Supra actually has approximately 455 hp (339 kW) – a full 73 hp (54 kW) more than Toyota says it should have.
The million-dollar question now is whether this dyno reading is accurate. Not all chassis dynos are created equal; readings can vary quite a bit between dyno manufacturers and there’s a litany of information that must be plugged into the dyno’s computer system to obtain an accurate reading. Being off on any of those figures can return false readings, as we saw last year with Motor Trend’s dyno test of a 2020 Corvette.
That’s not to say this particular dyno pull is inaccurate, or that mistakes were made in the setup. With this being the only 2021 Supra dyno pull we’ve seen, there isn’t a basis for comparison just yet. On this particular day with this particular dyno, the numbers could be on the high side. It’s also possible that Toyota has a juiced-up wringer in its press fleet designed to impress us media types.
And yes, it’s also possible that 388 hp to the wheels is spot-on, meaning Toyota significantly underrated its top-trim Supra for 2021.