History Repeats Itself: The Rumored Toyota MR2 Revival May Get Help From a German Automaker

Journalists and enthusiasts alike have mocked the new Toyota Supra for secretly being a BMW in disguise. But with the rumored Toyota MR2, history is repeating itself. Rather than go it alone, Toyota plans on partnering with a more experienced sports car manufacturer. However, this time, the Japanese brand is speaking guidance from one of BMW’s rivals –– the German Automaker, Porsche.

Toyota Alessandro Volta Concept Car
Toyota Alessandro Volta Concept Car | Ilona Studre/ullstein bild via Getty Images

The Rumored Toyota MR2 may get some help from Porsche

Before continuing, everything in this article lives in the hypothetical, with information gathered from Car Buzz. So while this new Toyota MR2 is becoming a priority, it hasn’t been planned for a full-production run yet, and may just end up being another concept car.

But the press releases say that this new MR2 will be inspired by an older Toyota concept vehicle, the Toyota Alessandro Volta (pictured above). This futuristic wedge debuted back in 2004 at the Geneva Motor Show. But while the styling will be all Toyota, the car’s inner workings will be outsourced. First, it was the Supra, which has BMW M4 blood, a flagship in the lineup of this particular German Automaker. And even the 2020 Toyota 86 is secretly a Subaru.

But the logic behind developing the car is sound, as if Toyota started from scratch, they’d have to create new technologies from the ground up. That, in turn, would be extremely expensive. So the brand is communicating with Porsche, as well as British automaker Lotus, to lower costs. However, the powertrain Toyota is hinting at isn’t what you’d expect.

The new MR2 will be a mean, green, hybrid sports car

Original 2003 Toyota MR2 Spyder
Original 2003 Toyota MR2 Spyder | Toyota

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If the car comes to fruition, the Toyota MR2 will be a plug-in hybrid sports car. Paired with either a 3.0L V6, the alleged heft of the MR2 ranges from about 345 to 395 horsepower. Compare that to the six-cylinder Supra, which manages 382 horsepower, and there’s a chance the MR2 might make the Supra Toyota’s second fastest car.

Perhaps we’re seeing the dawn of sports hybrids, similar to what Honda attempted with the CR-Z. Though, while the CR-Z was a hybrid that also had a stick, there are no hints as to whether or not the new Toyota MR2 will also be a manual.

In terms of price, estimates are saying that the Toyota MR2 will cost six million yen, or about $52,700. By comparison, the Toyota Supra 2.0 starts at $40,000, and with all the extras (including the more powerful six-cylinder), it’ll go for $55,250. Assuming that the alleged $52,700 is the MR2’s starting price, this new hybrid sports car could be expensive.

If all goes according to plan the Toyota MR2 will debut in 2024

Original 2000 Toyota MR2 Spyder
Original 2000 Toyota MR2 Spyder | Toyota

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While the new MR2 has been greenlit for development, that doesn’t mean it’ll get mad. But if the sports car is put on the production line, you can expect to see it as soon as 2024. Though, with part shortages and high new car prices, there could be delays further down the line.

Just because this new Toyota MR2 would be built in part by some third party doesn’t mean it’ll be bad. In fact, it would be amazing to see this classic Toyota sports car reimagined as a hybrid sports car. But again, everything is hypothetical, so we haven’t gotten our hopes up yet. If it all does in fact come to pass, it will certainly be interesting to see what Toyota and German automaker Porsche come up with.

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