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The 2020 Toyota Supra might technically be one of the most popular sports car models of the year. Even so, many people are still questioning the legality of this sports car in America. To be fair, the Supra has somewhat of a checkered past, so we can understand there is some confusion. If you want to buy a new Supra you’re in luck because the model is very much alive today in the U.S. However, are the rumors that an older version of the Supra being banned true?

The illegal Supra in question

A black 1994 Toyota Supra which features the sleek exterior and aggressive spoiler drivers fell in love with.
1994 Toyota Supra Turbo | Toyota

The long-standing rumor is that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) banned the 1994 Toyota Supra model because of serious long-term reliability issues. If that were the case, it would be extremely hard to find this model anywhere in the U.S. It wouldn’t be able to be imported either because the NHTSA would have blacklisted it.

However, that’s not true. The folks at Slash Gear received an e-mail from the NHTSA confirming the 1994 Toyota Supra was never banned. There are currently 10 complaints about this vintage Supra on the NHTSA website, but there is no evidence of the organization banning the car. Also, you can still import a 25-year-old Supra, according to NHTSA’s FAQ.

Supra production suspended 

The Supra remained popular for a while and was still considered an excellent performer and hailed for its upscale cabin and technology. However, in 1998, Toyota ultimately discontinued the Supra in North America because of low sales, according to Car Sales Base. In 2002, Toyota stopped producing the Supra because it didn’t align with Japan’s updated fuel-efficiency guidelines.

Supra the reprise 

After being on hiatus for over 20 years, Toyota revived the Supra for 2020. Enthusiasts still love this coupe because of its thrilling performance, gorgeous interior, and user-friendly technology.

Each 2020 Supra model is powered by a smooth BMW turbocharged six-cylinder engine mated with an eight-speed automatic and makes 335 horsepower. Rear-wheel drive is also standard on the 2020 Supra, and all-wheel drive is not officially available. But you could convert your Supra.

The Supra’s handling capability is ideal for the street and the track and can compete with the likes of the Chevy Corvette and even the Porsche Cayman GTS.  It can go from 0 to 60 mph in under four seconds. The Supra also has an above-average fuel-economy rating with a combined 26 mpg.

Inside the Supra

Since performance capability is the same on each 2020 Supra model, the interior is what really separates the trim levels. The standard GR Supra 3 model offers a suede-like material and an attractive infotainment display.

A host of advanced safety features come standard, including forward-collision warning and automatic emergency braking. On the Premium trim, you get an upgraded infotainment system and leather upholstery. The Supra 3 starts at $49,990, and the Premium model starts at $53,990.

Reliability ratings

The 2020 Supra earned a lower reliability score from Consumer Reports due to the three recall notices on the model. One has to do with a headlight failure, another with the backup camera, and one for issues with the front seatbelts. Impacted owners have been notified of these issues.

Since the Supra is so new, there isn’t much extensive data available. Generally, the Toyota brand is known to be reliable, but some of these issues are BMW-related.

Editor’s note: Leigh Fields contributed to this article. 


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