Modern Toyota MR2 Concept Brings Back the Mid-Engined Sports Car in Sharp Render

Modern Toyota MR2 rendering 1 photo
Photo: Rain Prisk/Instagram
There was a time when the Toyota badge meant quite a lot on the performance car scene. And, for quite a few years now, the automotive producer has made efforts to bring back that shine. But will that work include a revival of the MR2? Until we get a definitive answer from the company, this independent rendering shows what could be done for the mid-engined nameplate.
Toyota built three generations of the MR2, with production spreading between 1984 and 2007. Ever since its departure, enthusiasts have been begging for a return, and it's not difficult to see why: with its midship configuration, its compact nature, and its not-a-bank-breaker pricing, the Japanese machine pushed more than a few right buttons.

Rumors and vague hints from the Japanese carmaker have been keeping the topic in the spotlight for the past decade, but we didn't get to enjoy much else. The current result of the two is a narrative that aims to bring hope for a fourth-generation MR2 that would slot between the 2022 GR 86 that landed earlier this week and the Mk V Supra.

For the record, the second-gen Toyobaru is expected to kick off at around $30,000, while you can have a turbo-four Supra for at least $43,000 (add $8,000 for an extra pair of cylinders).

Meanwhile, digital artist Rain Prisk has come up with the proposal we have here, which mixes the midship machine's DNA with a futuristic approach. For instance, the air intakes sitting just before the rear wheels are an ode to the second-gen model, while the minimalist front end seems to suit the badge, with the sleek LED lights appearing to tell the velocity story rather well.

Then again, things aren't that simple back in real life. For one, Toyota's Gazoo Racing has already brought us the briliant AWD hot hatch that is the 2020 Yaris GR, while the go-fast division is preparing to introduce a GR Super Sport range topper as the road-going part of a Le Mans Hypercar program. And since making a profit from performance vehicles requires an extremely delicate balance, building a business case for the return of the MR2 might be impossible.

Of course, there's always the possibility of the MR2 nameplate being used for an all-electric sports car, even though this pathway comes with its own obstacles. For one, Toyota has proven to be EV-shy so far. Then there's the fact that the sports car segment is all about generating emotions, something that electric motors are not that good at, at least when compared to internal combustion hardware.

PS: Yes, this is the same artist who dreamed up a modern AE86 based on the 86.

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About the author: Andrei Tutu
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In his quest to bring you the most impressive automotive creations, Andrei relies on learning as a superpower. There's quite a bit of room in the garage that is this aficionado's heart, so factory-condition classics and widebody contraptions with turbos poking through the hood can peacefully coexist.
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