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Better late than never

THE OBVIOUS QUESTION ABOUT the launch of a new Supra is, what took Toyota so long?

It’s been 17 years since the last version of the Japanese sports car, and in that time a lot has changed in the sports car market, not least the arrival of the Porsche Cayman and Alpine A110. For most, such a lull – and such competition – would make it an uphill task to drum up interest in a new model. But luckily (or as we shall see, perhaps unluckily) for Toyota, that hasn’t been a problem.

That’s because the Supra name has taken on a cultish life all its own. First seen in 1978 when it was given to more powerful versions of the Celica, it morphed into its own distinct model which quickly joined the Skyline and NSX in the pantheon of modern Japanese classics - a position it cemented with a starring role in the first Fast and Furious film and in Sony’s Gran Turismo game.

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Featuring our exclusive lead story on Martin Brundle being reunited with his Jaguar XJR-12, an extract from Gordon Murray's new book, and our tribute to the phenomenal driver that was Niki Lauda.