Let’s be real, the only reasons BMW and Toyota are working together are for two things both brands (and the industry) needs: Weight reduction and mass volume sporting electrification. Mix the two together and you get lightweight sport hybrids for under $100,000 and the beginning of where everyday sportscars will be.

There won’t be anything special about the gas-only powered models. The upcoming BMW Z5 will be a softtop 2-seater and the Toyota Sportscar will be a 2-seater coupe. The cars will have about the same exterior dimensions of the Porsche 911 but be priced right in the 718 Boxster/Cayman market (so there’s your value). More importantly though, they will have a similar curb weight to the current Porsche 718. Again, Im just talking about the gas-only versions we’ll see unveiled next year. Here’s what I’m thinking:

  • Toyota Supra
    Coupe only, manual and DCT transmission options.
    No AWD availability.
    $49k or $55k (depending on how well the $55k version throws down).
  • BMW Z5
    Soft top convertible only, manual transmission and DCT options.
    RWD and AWD availability.

As far as gasoline engines to plug into go, I’m thinking something like this:

  • B48 - 250-300 hp and 260-300 lb-ft.
    - Not available in the Supra.
    - Available in Z5 sDrive30i and xDrive30i
  • B58B30O0 - 335-360 hp and 350-375 lb-ft.
    - Not available in the Supra.
    - Available in Z5 sDrive40i and xDrive40i.
  • “B58B30T0" - 376-420 hp and 380-410 lb-ft
    - Available in the Supra.
    - Available in Z5 M Sport sDrive50i and M Sport xDrive50i

*I know there are a ton of BMW enthusiasts here that can better speculate on the ACTUAL engine that would be used, the designation, and the performance aspects. I don’t see the N55B30T0 being used, but maybe you do. I say that a “B58B30T0" is coming in order to be an engine specially developed with a hybrid compatibility in mind to supplement it.

Now I’m going to bet that Toyota will touch the I6 and that the current prototype we have been seeing on the Nurburgring is simply running reliability testing and gradually being bumped up as Toyota plays editor/censor to that foreign powertrain. I know they trust the chassis and vehicle dynamics and would have piggybacked off of whatever the Z5 prototype has been laying down in testing otherwise and saved the cash.


So here is the lineup I’m thinking:

2018 BMW Z5 sDrive30i and xDrive30i (Softtop Convertible)
- 6MT, 7DCT
- 270 hp and 285 lb-ft (B48)
- Starts at $53,000. Lowest weight at 2,900 lbs


2018 BMW Z5 sDrive40i and xDrive40i (Softtop Convertible)
- 6MT, 7DCT
- 355 hp and 360 lb-ft (B58B30Oo)
- Starts at $61,000. Lowest weight at 3,050 lbs

2018 BMW Z5 M Sport sDrive50i and M Sport xDrive50i (Softtop Convertible)
- 6MT, 7DCT
- 400 hp and 410 lb-ft (BMW/Toyota developed “B58B30To”)
- Starts at $79,000. Lowest weight at 3,200 lbs


2018 Toyota Supra Base (Coupe) - If Low Price Point Needed
- 6MT, 7DCT.
- 320 hp and 350 lb-ft. (Toyota-ized B58B30O0)
- Starts at $49,000. Lowest weight at 2,800 lbs.


2018 Toyota Supra GT (Coupe) - Most Likely Version We’ll See
- 6MT, 7DCT.
- 376 hp and 380 lb-ft. (Toyota/BMW developed “B58B30To”)
- Starts at $55,000. Lowest weight at 2,950

2018 Toyota Supra GT-S (Coupe) - If Toyota Decides To
- 6MT (maybe), 7DCT.
- 405 hp and 395 lb-ft. (Toyota/BMW developed “B58B30To”)


I don’t know, let’s say the Supra GT-S will be about a $62,000 vehicle weighing right on 2,950 lbs still. But the more important vehicles will be a plug-in hybrid Z5 iPerformance and the performance hybrid Supra Hybrid. I think the BMW will be a very lightweight plug-in hybrid (as in 3,500 lbs max) while the Supra will end up being a lightweight performance hybrid (again as in 3,400 lbs max). Both vehicles would have electric motors sending power to the front wheels, maybe one more on the rear differential in the case of the Supra Hybrid. I don’t think the BMW Z5 iPerformance will be higher than the top end M Sport (or whatever they call their Z5 M that isn’t a Z5 M) but it should be a pretty big deal. The Supra Hybrid will be the top end performer and an enthusiast hype machine.

Let’s say the BMW Z5 iPerformance plug-in hybrid will be starting at $70,000 with 350 hp and 400 lb-ft of torque and weighing about 3,400 lbs as the goal. Then we’ll say the Supra Hybrid will start at $73,000 with about 470 hp and 450 lb-ft of torque and weighing in at an astounding (for a hybrid) 3,350 lbs.


Whatever happens, I think the goal of this project is to create the most lightweight, low priced (under-$80k), hybrid sportscar possible right now. Once these two variants hit the market then we’ll get a ton of rumors that the next Corvette, F-Type, 718, and pretty much every sportscar starting between $50,000 and $70,000 will be getting a hybrid version that matches the Z5upra. Should be a good time!

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