Toyota is Working on a New MR2 Says Gazoo Racing Boss

Toyota is Working on a New MR2 Says Gazoo Racing Boss

Toyota wants to reunite its fabled “Three Brothers” trio of sports cars to help jumpstart the company’s heart.

Once upon a time Toyota was cool: Takumi Fujiwara delivered Tofu and decimated Japanese performance royalty in a Hachiroku, the mid-engine MR2 was untouchable in Japanese Super GT racing, Paul Walker walked Ferraris on the silver screen in a twin-turbo tangerine MKIV Supra, while the Celica had gotten itself banned from the WRC with one of the most brilliant cheats in the history of racing.

After a strange period where Toyota only wore brown loafers and ate at moderately priced chain restaurants, the global giant is about to get its edge back.

Tetsuya Tada, the father of the new GT86 and boss of Toyota Gazoo Racing, seems to have confirmed a new MR2 is in the works. With the Supra on the way and the GT86 already on sale as the Celica’s spiritual successor, Tada-San told EVO the “three brothers” would be in production together “as soon as possible.”

SEE MORE: 2017 Toyota 86 Review

It’s believed Toyota is looking at a hybridized mid-engine layout, not dissimilar from its almost-Le Mans-winning-LMP1 racecars. The mid-engine layout offers advantages in terms of battery storage and packaging—it’s possible that not all new MR2s will be hybrids—but Tada-San says Toyota is “working very hard” to make the hybrid powertrain a possibility.

The new MR2 could slot in below the current 86 if it follows the form of Toyota’s S-FR and S-FR Racing concept which was smaller than a GT86 but larger than a Miata. However, the pair were also front-engined four-seaters.

Tada-San also dropped a hint or two regarding the upcoming Supra, telling the British publication “the car should be lighter than its rivals,” before gushing about the Porsche Cayman, which isn’t exactly a bad rabbit for the new Supra to chase. Unfortunately, it leaves the 86 stuck in a strange place between a childhood icon and an LMP1-fueled two-seater.

  • Interesting, if it’s not too pricey I might have to trade in my 91T

  • Frank DeSalvo

    Not so fast. it’ll prob be a hybrid.

  • Chad

    Just do a 3rd or 4th gen turbo swap. Itll keep u happy i guarantee it… lol

  • I’m 50 this year, it’s either this or a used Mercedes….

  • Dan S

    Please for the love of god base this new MR2 off a AW11 and keep it simple (cost down). We don’t need all those luxuries like heated seats, NAV, huge stereo, ect. If people want them charge them for it.

  • NGC

    Mercedes Sports Car. TERRIBLE

  • What can I say, I’m feeling old and like I’ve outgrown sports cars

  • smartacusⓊ

    don’t get a C250. They are easy to hack.
    journalist Michael Hastings was killed in his by the CIA in 2013.
    Get something with a manual transmission

  • getoffme

    Yes please. And Toyota is right to benchmark the Cayman.

  • John Lawrence

    At 50? My God man, I’m 69 this month and haven’t outgrown sports cars. It’s just a LOT harder to get in and out of them. 😉

  • Jonny_Vancouver

    What about an 80’s BMW 325i? I hear those things are bulletproof and with a few bolt-on’s, can rival the handling of modern sports cars.

  • Jonny_Vancouver

    I’m a big fan of the S-FR and the Kikai design study.

  • Eh, never been a big BMW fan, not my style

  • There’s just a few things I’m getting tired of. People thinking I want to race them, and the rough ride. The roads here are terrible.

  • Aaron King

    But the styling on the MR-S and that of the current Concepts still look like shit…
    You need to go back to the sw20 for inspiration

  • Parashooter

    How about not sticking a new MR2 with less-than-great power? 200hp wasn’t in the ballpark back then – especially when that engine could produce SO much more, SO easily… Then there’s the wheels… WTF was Toyota thinking putting 14″ wheels on the SW20 – then finally 15″ wheels… when EVERYTHING ELSE on the road was coming with 16’s and 17’s… Of course they could have then also put better brakes on the car too….