2018 BMW Z5 spy shots – Image via S. Baldauf/SB-Medien
BMW and Toyota have been collaborating on a new sports car platform since 2011.
The new platform is to spawn successors to the BMW Z4 and Toyota Supra.
Newspaper Kleine Zeitung reports that both cars will be built by independent vehicle manufacturer Magna Steyr at its plant in Graz, Austria. The plant currently builds the Mercedes-Benz G-Class as well as the Mini Countryman and Paceman.
The new BMW sports car is said to be entering production first, sometime in 2018. Production of the Toyota sports car will likely follow shortly after. Annual production for both is said to only be around 60,000 units. The low expected volume is the reason the two automakers decided to collaborate on the development.
BMW has confirmed plans to build a new model at Magna Steyr’s plant starting in 2018, though is yet to disclose the identity of the vehicle. The new model is unlikely to be the next-generation Countryman since the compact crossover is due out this year. It also won’t be a new Paceman as this unloved model will soon be axed.
The new BMW sports car will be a conventional roadster with a soft-top roof and a turbocharged engine driving the rear wheels. It will likely form the basis of several BMW endurance race cars and we have our fingers crossed for a high-performance M variant at some point.
Toyota’s plans for the Supra successor are less certain. Currently, it’s thought the car, which isn’t confirmed to be called a Supra, will come with some form of hybrid powertrain using technology derived from Toyota’s World Endurance Championship developments.