With the impending return of the Supra, it was only inevitable that Toyota would announce its official participation in some form of motorsport. Well, the first one is here, before the car has even launched. We just didn’t expect it to be NASCAR. SuperGT, D1GP, or Formula D? Sure, those would make sense, but oddly enough after looking into it the connection isn’t that bizarre.
It turns out that the Supra will compete in the NASCAR Xfinity Series, which functions as sort of a minor league to the NASCAR Cup Series. The bush league cars are actually the more interesting models, if only in name — after all, in both leagues the cars use templated bodies that only vaguely resemble the road cars they’re supposedly representing.
In Xfinity, Ford, Chevy and Dodge use Mustang, Camaro, and Challenger bodies, so the Supra is in good company with its fellow coupes. Underneath the skin they’re running V6 engines, as opposed to the Cup cars’ V8s. Since the Supra is and has always been a six-cylinder car — albeit an inline-six — it makes slightly more sense than at first glance. [Correction: the series now uses detuned V8s] At least, it make more sense than the Cup cars, which feature RWD, V8-powered Camrys, Impalas, and Fusions.
Because of the rules, though, the Supra ends up looking like a set of FT-1 headlights grafted onto a sedan body. So, if you ever wanted to know what a Supra sedan looks like, NASCAR’s got you covered. Or, you can just get yourself a Chaser/Mark II/Cresta.