Want to Drive the Best 2021 Toyota GR Supra? Here’s Our Trim Guide
Which version of the newest edition of the iconic sports car is right for you?
The iconic Toyota Supra nameplate is back as the GR Supra, which regains the model's reputation for being a sexy sports car that can sometimes be more than a handful. For 2021, the GR Supra's turbo 3.0-liter I-6 engine sees a large jump in power output, and the model gets its first turbocharged four-cylinder engine. How does the GR Supra stack up in its various trims against itself and other rear-drive coupe contenders? Let's take a look.
2021 Toyota GR Supra 2.0 Pros and Cons
The GR Supra 2.0 breaks with tradition, offering the model's first-ever four-cylinder engine as an alternative to the straight-six typically found under the hood. The smaller turbocharged 2.0-liter powerplant in the Supra 2.0 helps shave more than 200 pounds from the car and gets better fuel efficiency than the 3.0-liter turbo six-cylinder, but only just—25/32 mpg city/highway versus the six-cylinder's 22/30 mpg. As we've found, however, the new 2.0-liter Supra is still more efficient than other sports cars with similar powerplants like Porsche's base four-cylinder 718 Cayman coupe.
Additional standard fare on the GR Supra 2.0 includes 18-inch alloy wheels, rear spoiler, and undertray for greater downforce and aerodynamic efficiency (which helps with fuel economy, too), and LED taillights, as well as auto-leveling LED headlights. It also comes standard with black Alcantara and leather-trimmed sport seats, an 8.8-inch LCD gauge cluster display screen, an 8.8-inch LCD infotainment screen, and automatic rain-sensing windshield wipers. Standard safety features across all trims include automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection, a lane departure warning system, and automatic high beams.
Although the base-model 2021 Toyota Supra offers the least power, at about $44,000 it's also the least expensive way to get into the line. The turbocharged four-cylinder engine in the GR Supra 2.0 is rated at 255 hp, more than similarly sized turbo engines in the BMW 230i and Lexus RC300 coupe but less than the 2.0-liter turbo power plant in the Chevrolet Camaro LS coupe.
If you're considering the GR Supra 2.0 model, keep in mind that persistent ride issues on less than perfect road surfaces with the rear have yet to be completely ironed out, and enthusiasts may lament the platform's lack of a manual transmission in all its variations. If you can live within those constraints and not care less about all of the heritage hang-ups of Supra purists, the four-cylinder GR Supra 2.0 is the cheapest way to get into one when you want more than the smaller 86 sports car can offer.
2021 Toyota GR Supra 3.0 Pros and Cons
The GR Supra 3.0 gets a 3.0-liter turbocharged six-cylinder engine that's rated at 382 hp, a 47-hp increase over the previous model year's turbo straight-six engine—the extra power shows up at higher speeds rather than right off the line. It's one of the highest output six-cylinder engines in the RWD premium sport coupe segment, competing with the 400 hp turbo 3.0-liter V-6 in the Infiniti Q60 Red Sport 400 coupe and larger 4.0-liter flat-six in the Porsche 718 Cayman GTS 4.0 coupe that makes 394 hp. In spite of its relatively high horsepower rating, the six-cylinder engine in the GR Supra 3.0 has better fuel economy compared to the powerplants in the Q60 Red Sport 400 and 718 Cayman GTS 4.0, 22/30 mpg compared to 20/27 mpg from the Infiniti and 17-19/24 mpg from the Porsche.
The Supra 3.0 receives a standard adaptive variable suspension and engine bay chassis braces, as well as Brembo upgrades for the front brakes that consist of four-piston calipers to replace the Supra 2.0's single-piston units, and larger-diameter 13.7-inch rotors to supplant the 13.0-inch rotors on the base model. Supra 3.0 also receives larger-diameter 19-inch forged wheels and brushed stainless steel exhaust tips instead of chrome ones, while the cabin adds six more speakers to go from four to 10 and swaps out the manually adjustable front seats for 14-way power-adjustable seats.
At a sticker price of around $52,000 for the GR Supra 3.0, that's more than you'll pay for an eight-cylinder-powered Ford Mustang, Chevrolet Camaro, or Dodge Challenger. Those pony cars may be cheaper, but GR Supra 3.0 performance upgrades like the adaptive damping and bigger Brembo brakes generally cost extra on those other sporty two-doors and are standard only on their most expensive trims.
2021 Toyota GR Supra 3.0 Premium Pros and Cons
In Premium trim, the GR Supra 3.0 receives a color head-up display and heated black leather front seats to replace the leather and Alcantara seats in lower trims. The Premium trim also comes standard with a 12-speaker JBL sound system, wireless charging for compatible devices, sport pedals, and an 8.8-inch infotainment touchscreen.
This trim also upgrades the infotainment system by including wireless Apple CarPlay compatibility (it's optional on the previous two trims). In addition to the six colors available for the GR Supra, there is one exterior color that is offered as an option only for the GR Supra 3.0 Premium: Phantom.
The GR Supra 3.0 Premium is priced in the $55,000 range, a jump of $3,500 from the standard 3.0. The head-up display, wireless charging, and wireless Apple CarPlay might make this trim worth it for some, but keep in mind that an extra-cost package is available—but not standard—on every trim. The package includes adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert, and parking sensors with a low-speed emergency braking function. On the base 3.0 model, the package costs more but also adds the Premium's 12-speaker sound system and wireless Apple CarPlay.
2021 Toyota GR Supra A91 Edition Pros and Cons
The 2021 Supra didn't just boost power to the I-6 engine; Toyota also introduced the limited-run GR Supra A91 Edition, which will be capped at 1,000 units. The A91 Edition is mechanically identical to the 3.0 Premium except that it doesn't receive the head-up display.
What it does get is a black satin finish rear carbon spoiler and carbon-fiber auto-folding heated outside mirrors to replace the matte black side mirrors. The A91 further distinguishes itself with a unique Refraction blue exterior and Nocturnal black graphics, as well as black and blue Alcantara and leather sport seats with blue stitching sitting in a black and blue Alcantara and leather interior.
No performance enhancements are part of the GR Supra A91 Edition, but the additional $305 may be worth it if you fancy yourself a collector of special trims.
Which 2021 Toyota GR Supra Is Best?
The modern GR Supra is as much a focused driver's car as it is the rebirth of an enthusiast icon, and the 3.0 may be the better option of the two engines available for 2021 (the 2.0 is a two-time comparison loser). There are equally or more capable RWD coupes available for less money, but they lack the same level of content in their most basic trims. If it were our money, we might stick with the 3.0 model and add the Safety & Technology package. We'd miss out on the Premium's head-up display and the A91's flash but retain pretty much everything else that could make the GR Supra not just the reemergence of an icon, but a daily-drivable sports car, too.