The Toyota MR2 is a no-compromise roadster designed to excite true sports car enthusiasts. It is fun to drive, good to look at and affordable to own.
Like all the best roadsters, the Toyota MR2 combines traditional sports car characteristics with modern engineering. Returning to concept basics, Toyota drew upon their roots for lightweight sports cars, the Sports 800, and the two previous generations of MR2 to create a new style sports car for the 21st century.
Toyota MR2 is mid-engined, rear wheel drive for precise handling. Toyota engineers have used the very latest technology to cut weight and boost performance. But it is in the area of agility that the mid engine and lightweight design really shines. The mid-engine design, combined with an ideal 'wheelbase to overall length' ratio, makes this one of the most nimble of vehicles on the road. Quick and accurate driver response is the name of the game for the MR2 roadster.
The MR2's 1.8-litre engine has VVT-i (Variable Valve Timing - intelligent) for maximum midrange torque and superb top-end power, with the best fuel consumption in its class.
Modern sports car styling
The MR2 is a sports car with striking looks. The basic characteristics are its long wheelbase, short overhangs and strong horizontal line, accentuated by the dramatic air scoop for the engine. The body is short (3885mm) relative to the wheelbase (2450mm) which increases responsiveness and the low centre of gravity, wide track and long wheelbase also gives it stability.
2000 Toyota MR2
The interior is comfortable but clearly sporting. The bucket seats and the leather trimmed, three-spoke steering wheel create the ideal sports car driving environment, which is enhanced by the aluminium pedals. The dashboard is clean, simple and the race car instrumentation clear to read.
But drivers will not find MR2 lacking in comfort. Power steering, power windows and remote control central locking are among the items that will be offered as standard equipment. An engine immobiliser and, in selected markets, 'double locking' will help make the desirable MR2 more secure.
A detachable hard-top, creating a striking coupe look, will be available as an option. Other options include air conditioning.
Lightweight design philosophy
The lightweight of the Toytoa MR2 is the key to its sparkling performance, low fuel-consumption, agile handling and stable road holding. Design engineers worked to a target of less than 1,000kg, not just reducing the weight of each individual component but looking at the design as a whole when considering performance. As a result, MR2 has the best weight-to-power ratio in its class at 6.96kg/PS.
Modern safety standards
As with all Toyota vehicles, safety has been a critical consideration in the design of the Toyota MR2 which has a strong, stiff body.
Driver and passenger airbags are standard equipment and seat belts are pre-tensioned with force limiters to reduce the risk of chest injury in the event of an accident.
The lightweight platform means excellent braking performance and anti-lock braking is standard equipment.
The electro-hydraulic power steering offers precise steering assistance without drawing on engine power and is itself lightweight and compact.
Intelligent engine technology
Purposeful, agile, technically advanced - the Toyota MR2 is powered by a sophisticated 1.8-litre, VVT-i engine developing 103kW at 6,400rpm and maximum torque of 170 Nm at 4,400rpm.
Thanks to its low body weight (less than 1000kg), the MR2 roadster has the best power-to-weight ratio in its class and performance to match. The car will hit 100 km/h from rest in 7.9 seconds and has a top speed, where allowed, of 210 km/h.
The VVT-i (Variable Valve Timing - intelligent) delivers power where it is needed most - at high engine speeds - and torque throughout the rev range, making the MR2 roadster easy and relaxing to drive. The precise five-speed manual gearbox has a slick, positive action to allow the driver to make the most of this exciting car's performance.
But the power comes without a penalty in fuel consumption. On the combined EU cycle, the MR2 roadster will use just 7.4 litres/100km - the most fuel-efficient car in its class and with exhaust emissions reduced to match.
The Toyota MR2 roadster is also equipped with Toyota Direct Ignition - individual computer controlled coils acting directly onto the spark plugs - which improve ignition timing, cut harmful emissions and reduce service costs. Toyota Direct Ignition means there is no distributor to be maintained and no ignition timing to be reset.
The suspension design calls upon Toyota's long experience with mid-engined sports cars and has been developed to offer a firm, but comfortable ride that keeps the car stable and true.
The rear suspension is a dual link MacPherson strut design which has been refined and engineered for stability and light weight. The front suspension uses MacPherson struts, optimised and re-engineered to suit the mid-engined, rear wheel drive weight balance and characteristics.
Stylish, 15-inch alloy wheels are standard equipment (depending on local markets) with 185/55 R15 tyres at the front and 205/50 R15 at the rear. A limited slip differential for improved traction is also standard.