The Toyota 86 will be joined by a big brother sports car as part of a new collaboration announced by the Japanese car maker and its new favourite partner, BMW.
Toyota’s second sports car, which could become a spiritual successor to the Supra, will be another joint venture project, following the compact rear-wheel-drive 86 coupe that was produced in tandem with Subaru.
The new sports car forms a quarter of a new four-pronged long-term collaboration announced by Toyota Motor Corporation and BMW AG.
The companies have signed a memorandum of understanding that, in addition to jointly developing architecture and components for “a future sports vehicle, outlines plans to work together on the development of a fuel-cell system, electric drivetrains and lightweight technologies.
BMW and Toyota have already announced the German car maker will supply Toyota with 1.6-litre and 2.0-litre turbo diesel engines from 2014, and in March this year signed a binding agreement on joint research into future lithium-ion battery cell technology.
“We aim to further strengthen our competitive position in sustainable future technologies,” said BMW’s chairman of the board of management, Norbert Reithofer. “Toyota and the BMW Group share the same strategic vision of sustainable individual future mobility.
“Together we have a great opportunity to continue leading our industry through this transformation.”
Toyota said the two car makers could take advantage of each other’s strengths with the partnership.
“Toyota is strong in environment-friendly hybrids and fuel cells ... I believe BMW's strength is developing sports cars,” said TMC president Akio Toyoda. “I get so excited thinking about the cars that will result from this relationship.”
Neither car maker has elaborated on the sports car project, such as whether the BMW architecture used would be from the 3-Series or 5-Series range, be based on the Z4 coupe-roadster, or even an all-new platform.
It's the second Euro-Japanese sports car collaboration announced within a matter of weeks after Fiat and Mazda announced in May a new Alfa Romeo sports car would be based on the next-generation Mazda MX-5.