It will sit beneath the Supra in the company’s burgeoning sports car lineup and probably wear the GR Sport (Gazoo Racing) badge.
Toyota's European marketing boss, Matt Harrison, told Autocar that it has been “a successful ‘halo’ product for us,” and that “Supra is not to replace that car. They are for different audiences and are different products. We see a situation where they will sit alongside each other.”
After Toyota said it would evaluate its lineup, there has been speculation that the 86 and some other low-volume cars may be pared from the lineup as consumers increasingly shift to crossovers, SUVs and pickups.
Harrison also noted the 86 and the Supra are “not about volume globally. It’s about adding excitement to the brand.”
That’s great news because sales have been declining since 2013, but that always happens toward the end of a vehicle's product cycle. Sometimes automakers try to juice those sales at the end of the run with special editions. Toyota did that with the TRD version that offered more grip, bigger brakes, Sachs dampers and Michelin Pilot Sport 4 tires.
That one goes on sale in August for $33,340 as a 2019 model, which means we won’t see a new version of the 86 until at least 2020. Still, the fact that it’s staying around at all bodes well for enthusiasts.
Update: We asked Toyota for comment and the company said it can't confirm plans for a second-generation 86.