Chan Romero could have been singing about the manual version Toyota GR Supra GT when he wrote the song titled ‘Hippy Hippy Shake’ back in 1959. This is because the rear-wheel drive GR Supra shakes its curvaceous hips to the left and the right whenever you unleash the power from the raspy six-cylinder engine.
Toyota listened to sports car fans and customers alike and now offers the GR Supra with a manual transmission that has been engineered and tuned specifically for use with the coupe’s straight-six engine. The Toyota engineering team were able to modify existing transmission housing, driveshaft and gear set and remove elements that were not required, such as the acoustic package, which further reduced weight. The powertrain in the manual transmission has been lightened by 18kg compared to the automatic transmission.
The GR Supra’s traction and braking have been optimised for operation with manual transmission meaning the Supra’s hips wiggle in a fun, but not scary way and out of the corners it also allows you to slightly drift before the traction control intervenes. Officially the manual GR Supra is slower from 0-100km/h than the auto, 4.4 seconds compared to 4.1 seconds, and has the same top speed that is still limited to 250km/h.
The GR Supra GT manual is powered by a sweet 3.0 litre, in-line six-cylinder petrol engine with a twin-scroll turbo charger that produces 285kW between 5,800-6,500 rpm and 500Nm of torque between 1,800-5,000 rpm. The soundtrack gives the impression that it is all natural with no artificial pops and bangs emitted from the twin exhausts.
The 6-speed manual gearbox is taught though and you really need to concentrate on your gear changes by watching the revs on the large central taco and slot the next cog before the 7,000rpm red line. Reverse is difficult to select, there is no lift up or press down mechanism to help you engage reverse you just have to push hard and to the left and on most occasions, it took multiple attempts before I found reverse.
There are two drive modes to select from, Normal and Sport. Sport mode can be configured to your personal preference for damping, steering, engine and transmission. My preference was Sport as I found the ride was not too harsh for everyday driving and the noise emitted from the exhaust deepens in this mode. Overall the GR Supra manual feels solid underneath you and very entertaining to drive.
Toyota recommends using 95RON petrol and the official combined fuel consumption is 8.9L/100km and for my week I used 12.6L/100km nearly two litres more per 100km than the amount of fuel I used driving the auto GR Supra (10.8L/100km). So, if my fuel use is a reflection of my enjoyment of the two Supras, it looks as though I like the manual version better.
The interior in this GR Supra remains relatively unchanged from the last GR Supra GTS I drove in 2021 apart from some cosmetic changes that were required to accommodate the manual shifter. The leather interior smells nice and the cabin is stylish with its carbon fibre centre console and a metal ascent that stretches across the air vents and dash. I like that the 8.8” colour touchscreen can still be accessed via the rotary controller as this means that you don’t get finger marks on the screen. Voice control is also available and designated with a microphone rather than a masculine silhouette like that used on other Toyota models. The voice commands worked well for me when I used it for making phone calls, changing the radio station and setting a destination on the sat nav.
This is a sports car for the taller individual thanks to the roof design and the seating position adjustments available. The seats are heated with power adjustment for height, recline, forward/back, 4-way lumbar support and side bolster support and two memory positions for the driver to store their ideal driving position.
Storage in the Supra is still very limited with only small door cubbies that are just large enough for a sunglasses case. At the front of the centre console is a cubby for your smart phone with wireless charging for compatible devices and wireless connection to Apple CarPlay only. For corded connections there is one USB-A port and one 12V socket in this cubby as well.
The boot is a good size though and would fit enough luggage for a weekend away or the weekly shop, but there is still no partition between the cabin and boot, which is great for listening to the base from your subwoofers, but not great if you brake hard and items come flying forward. The boot still lacks an external boot release button meaning you need to open the power assisted boot lid from the key fob or the button in the cabin and manually close it down. The tyre repair kit is neatly packed in the side of the boot and there are four substantial tie down points, and a 12V socket located in the boot.
The Toyota GR Supra does not have an ANCAP safety rating, but it is still fitted with seven airbags and a number of active safety features. These include blind spot monitoring, rear cross traffic alert, front collision warning, lane departure warning and the manual only has standard cruise control. The Supra has a standard rear-view mirror with 3600 sensors, auto wipers, auto lights and adaptive high beam.
All new Toyotas sold come with a five years/unlimited kilometre warranty and Toyota will increase this under the Warranty Advantage Extended Engine and Driveline coverage to seven years, provided your vehicle is properly serviced and maintained per its Warranty and Service Book. The serviced interval for this GR Supra is every 12 months or 15,000km, whichever comes first and the first five services are capped at $415 each.
Also when you purchase a GR Toyota you gain membership to the exclusive Gazoo Racing owners club that allows members can unlock special access to motorsport events, driving experiences, club meet-ups and merchandise. Plus, members get 8 cents off premium fuel at participating Ampol service stations.
The Toyota GR Supra GT manual is priced from $87,000 excluding on-road costs, which is more than $10,000 less than the automatic GR Supra GTS coupe I drove in 2021. As tested with Azure Blue premium paint ($575) this GR Supra was priced at $87,575 plus on-roads. You can Build and Price your manual GR Supra GT online or visit your preferred Toyota dealer for more information.
|The manual GR Supra is fun to drive||Reverse gear is difficult to engage|
|The sweet in-line six-cylinder engine||Fuel use is greater in the manual GR Supra|
|The price||No ANCAP safety rating|
Photographs by Driven Women Magazine.