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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
After a lot of thought, test drives, more thought, analysis and so on I think that an MKIV Supra is the ticket. I have always loved these cars, in a way I guess you could say it is my unicorn. I feel that todays newest cars just do not offer enough, either their styling is questionable, the reliability or there performance/price. I was looking for some input and advice regarding this matter. I want something that is a capable handler, it does not have to be a razor blade like an EVO but capable, something that is good for cruising and darting around. I need a solid amount of power and an exhaust note that is difficult to get tired of but most of all reliability, upkeep/maintenance costs (low) and overall enjoyment for the dollar.

I have done some homework on the MKIV Supra and I have heard conflicting ideals. Some people say to buy the best condition, lowest mileage Supra regardless of color/transmission, others say buy based on condition only even if the miles are high and lastly... forget the rest and buy what transmission/color you'd like as long as the price is right. Which is the one I want to go with if I want to least problematic experience?

When does the MKIV Supra start to slip in reliability? By this I mean, what modifications are safe to buy a car with that isn't too conservative? I also noticed that single turbo Supras are the same if not less expensive than stock or close to stock ones, would it be a good idea to buy one of those? I want a cosmetically/mechanically clean no worries quick Supra out of this, I am not trying to be the fastest or to beat out any specific car nor do I have a track trap goal I simply want a car that someone sees and says, mmm nice car. I do not want to have to have any worries that I can't just turn the key any day and drive across the country if I wanted to.

When is the mileage TOO high? I am looking to spend in the low $20,000's but when is the mileage too high regardless of condition? I want to keep this for a while, I will mod over time unless I find a great example with a lot of things done that I had planned to anyways. Some say the mileage, no matter how high does not matter because these things are turn key monsters... one of the most reliable sports cars ever built.

Things to consider when buying?

I have driven C5's galore, s2000's, 350z, RX-7 TT, M3 etc... they all seem to have something that just doesn't sit well enough with me for it to be my one prized possession so I am hoping an MKIV Supra will be the right one, any advice is appreciated thanks in advance
 

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I have done some homework on the MKIV Supra and I have heard conflicting ideals. Some people say to buy the best condition, lowest mileage Supra regardless of color/transmission, others say buy based on condition only even if the miles are high and lastly... forget the rest and buy what transmission/color you'd like as long as the price is right. Which is the one I want to go with if I want to least problematic experience?
Really, you should buy what you can afford. I have owned both the 6-speed and Auto. Having driven both, I can say that for a daily driver, especially in traffic, the Auto wins hands down. Also if you dont mind putting in a built tranny, then I would go Auto. If you dont want to spend as much upgrading...6-speed. Overall the 6-speed is much, much more enjoyable to drive. I loved it.

When does the MKIV Supra start to slip in reliability? By this I mean, what modifications are safe to buy a car with that isn't too conservative? I also noticed that single turbo Supras are the same if not less expensive than stock or close to stock ones, would it be a good idea to buy one of those? I want a cosmetically/mechanically clean no worries quick Supra out of this, I am not trying to be the fastest or to beat out any specific car nor do I have a track trap goal I simply want a car that someone sees and says, mmm nice car. I do not want to have to have any worries that I can't just turn the key any day and drive across the country if I wanted to.
It starts to slip in reliablity when you buy one that has been abused. Other than that, its a pretty solid vehicle. I have driven 200k mile Supras, and no problems, other than maybe the valve stem seals...an easy fix if you know what you are doing.


When is the mileage TOO high? I am looking to spend in the low $20,000's but when is the mileage too high regardless of condition? I want to keep this for a while, I will mod over time unless I find a great example with a lot of things done that I had planned to anyways. Some say the mileage, no matter how high does not matter because these things are turn key monsters... one of the most reliable sports cars ever built.
Too high miles, well that depends on if it was, yet again, abused. Like I said
Things to consider when buying? For the most part, mileage doesnt matter.

I have driven C5's galore, s2000's, 350z, RX-7 TT, M3 etc... they all seem to have something that just doesn't sit well enough with me for it to be my one prized possession so I am hoping an MKIV Supra will be the right one, any advice is appreciated thanks in advance
Is the MKIV Supra right for you. Well, if you have to ask, probably not. You either know it is, or you shouldnt get one. This is what most owners are going to say. The Supra is a blast to own/drive. It is one of the only classic imports, IMO. Just think, no more Supras...none in the plans to ever be remade, and the price has been fairly consistant over the years. I have driven most of those cars as well, and I have to say that the Supra is overall the best I have driven. It is extremely reliable, has pretty much bullet-proof engine block, and turns heads. I personally LOVE the Supra, and will always own at least 1...but Im already looking at a 6-speed to add to the garage.

Good luck in your decision. Ultimately, it comes down to you and what you want. If you can afford one, and want one, then buy one. Easy enough.
 

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Im in the same boat you are except I am selling my evo. I modded it thinking I would be happy and im just not..I pretty much bought it because it had potential and was easier to get and there was a guy right in my town down the street selling it.. not a good reason to buy a car for sure but I cannot wait to sell it and go with a supra.

I have heard the same as you ive been told mileage doesnt really matter but try to find a low mileage affordable one. As for spending low 20's I would guess that you are gunna have to go with a high mileaged one.

Im looking to spend no more than 35g's so im thinkin I might be able to snag one with less or 50k in miles.

Good luck with your search I will be doing the same as soon as my evo sells :)

I like the response so far and its true you either know you want one by seeing videos or test driving one or riding in a buddies which I have had the luxury of doing.

I personally don't think that you would regret owning one of the baddest cars on the planet that wont be made again.

To me its not a hard choice I really dont think you will regret it and this is coming from a noob who doesnt know as much as the veteran owners and I havent had the pleasure of actually driving or getting the head turning experience from cruising around in it.

I say go for it!

Also I think when ya find one def have a shop give it an inspection to make sure its good or meet up with a local supra member and have them inspect it for ya or whatever idk. Def take your time tho.
 

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I would not buy a Supra if it is going to be your daily...

I love these cars, but I would highly recommend you buy a $1000 civic, or sentra to daily if you buy a supra. Especially if you do not have the cash on hand to replace expensive parts.
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I have been scouting the classifieds section of this forum for a while. I either see a 100k+ car for low $20's and other times I see newer with lower mileage for around the same if not cheaper. I think it's a waiting game with these cars, waiting as in one will jump out and get ya.

I don't question whether or not the Supra is in the cards for me, I hands down would take the keys if it were parked next to the competition. I am just looking for advice, concrete advise on how to go about it, and how you all went about it. One of my biggest concerns is the people that say the Supra is VERY expensive to own, while others say... oil changes only type deal.
 

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One of my biggest concerns is the people that say the Supra is VERY expensive to own, while others say... oil changes only type deal.
I was wondering the same thing as after looking at prices on aftermarket and oem parts it doesnt seem very pricey considering.

Very good thread, lots of the same questions im asking myself as im looking towards a Supra purchase.

More input from some Supra MKIV owners please.:agreed:
 

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It depends I guess? I spent 4500-4800 on my AMS 35R turbo kit. I see T-71 turbo kits from boost logic for 3400ish to 4800ish..those put out more power and the stock supra motor can handle more..im sure you might need to replace other parts here and there but I guess im missing the boat as well..from what some of the people were saying I expected to see 11,000 turbo kits and thats it.

I guess it depends on the situation, and I guess we'll see man :)
 

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hmmmm
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I'm also in the same boat. I've wanted a Supra for years now. Tried goin the "lil sister" way and did a 1jz SC300, but obviously that left me wanting more.

Now I'm torn between an M3 and a Supra. Part of me feels no matter what I buy, if it's not a Supra, I won't be happy, lol. You really can't beat the bulletproof qualities of the Supra, and the styling is timeless. The sky's the limit with the Supra. The M3 is pretty much stuck an NA car unless you wanna throw down 11,000 on a supercharger that'll give you 450 hp, or a turbo kit for 40,000 bucks. Its crazy. Which is why I think in the end, I can look at other cars, but I will end up getting my Supra after all these years.

Wish I could be more help, but I've never owned one, but just joining in the pre-supra owners club, lol.

And I can assure you, the Supra community here on the boards is one of the best I've seen on the net. I don't post much, but I've been lurking for years and there are tons of great people on these forums.
 

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I looked at a M3 as well. Dont feel like paying 11g's for a supercharger that gives you 420bhp or something close to that. Its a waiting game im gunna play this time :) and im gunna win damnit! lol
 

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The supra has the reputation to be highly reliable car as a whole (engine, tranny, everything) with very minor engineering goofs that you dont even have to bother thinking about.

I also do not recommend a Supra as a DD.. Get a cheap reliable car for that.. I have a Honda Accord 97 that I use as a DD.. Its a bit beat up but knowing full well that my Supra is nicely tucked away at my garage and not worry about it getting dinged during my daily runs is a blessing.

I had my Supra for a while now.. I take care of it, and baby it. I plan on keeping this puppy forever. But make no mistake, parts are expensive.. Tranny alone $6k, Engine varies from $2k (very cheap/lucky) to about $4k, give or take a few hundreds, Tires about $240 (for good ones), synthetic oil about $7 bucks a quart, etc...

The problem starts with upgrading the hp on these things. As you know, the more you modify anything, the more you are changing its engineering build. Expensive when things go wrong. But the Supra can be highly modified with fantastic results. Plenty of community support and the market notices this and offer new products and support for the Supra.

GL with your decision..

Whatever you want in the end, auto or manny, get what you want. Dont bother swapping it out unless you are totally into that sort of thing.
 
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I am mainly looking to do BPU ish, with some nice clean up cosmetic and the rest should go to making sure everything is in top notch shape at all times. The Supra can't be my DD with the weather I face, but it would be driven as much as possible. The transmission question for me is a big one, if my budget gets me a nice 100,000 mile example in auto for example, how much does it cost to keep the auto in tip top shape to handle the power or how much to upgrade it and with what parts etc. I think a 6 speed will be a tough find at my level, I think I will have to sacrifice overall condition to get a 6 speed in my range and I'd rather not I think and just go with one that is in great shape all around instead of the lesser condition 6 speed, or should I?
 

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I am mainly looking to do BPU ish, with some nice clean up cosmetic and the rest should go to making sure everything is in top notch shape at all times. The Supra can't be my DD with the weather I face, but it would be driven as much as possible. The transmission question for me is a big one, if my budget gets me a nice 100,000 mile example in auto for example, how much does it cost to keep the auto in tip top shape to handle the power or how much to upgrade it and with what parts etc. I think a 6 speed will be a tough find at my level, I think I will have to sacrifice overall condition to get a 6 speed in my range and I'd rather not I think and just go with one that is in great shape all around instead of the lesser condition 6 speed, or should I?
If you're looking spending low 20's then you're not too far off from finding a nice clean six speed for a little more. In my opinion 6 speed is the way to go unless you're a true fan of autos (which I also think are great). It's just that in the end, I think it's easier to have a reliable tranny that can hold a shitload of power. For a six speed, typically a quality clutch solves any issues.

I would recommend that you wait it out a bit and put together some more funds first. Shopping for these cars in the high 20's to low 30's price range can often get you a much cleaner example. It's definitely worth it in the long run. A lot of people get anxious and settle for a cheaper car that needs some work. Well a little work leads to a lot of work and more money on top of what you paid...just doesn't pan out all the time. It's a good chunk of money to spend and you should make sure that you get exactly what you want the first time around. Hope that helps.
 

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hmmmm
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Good advice Justin. It's so easy to jump into something because you want a Supra so bad. I've considered buying one with problems, or just a roller and getting a motor, but I've thankfully held back. I think it's much more worth the wait and get a nice clean, exactly what I want Supra than rush into anything. Now for some people, getting one with issues might fit them better, but like the OP, my budget will be between 20 and 25 grand, and I am going to wait until maybe Feb or so to pick one up so I can have that 20 to 25 grand instead of getting a cheaper one now. In the end I'll be happier, but dang, that wait till next Feb is gonna suck. But then again, look at the date I joined here, thats when I first "wanted" my Supra, hahaha.
 

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It took me 3 months to find the supra that fits me! I had to fly to NY and drove it over 3400miles back to Vegas and the car did it great! I always tell ppl if you have the money get one the car is something else! The respect ppl give you on the road when you drive one is crazy and girls love it!! =)
 

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It took me 3 months to find the supra that fits me! I had to fly to NY and drove it over 3400miles back to Vegas and the car did it great! I always tell ppl if you have the money get one the car is something else! The respect ppl give you on the road when you drive one is crazy and girls love it!! =)
LOL 3 months? Took me 11 years to find my unicorn. The wait was well worth it. My gf hated the idea that i bought another car, but everytime we go out she would always ride in the supra. I asked if u didnt like why do you want ride in it all the time, she said "cuz its sexy" It is expensive to maintain, i spent $2500 so far just to replace minor wear and tear and just got my IC installed. In the end when your in your supra you think of nothing else.
 

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Sounds like your mind is already made up. Don't need an internet forum full of strangers to convince you of anything.
 

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hmmmm
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Please stop referring to the Supra as a "unicorn"....
I don't think they are referring to the car in general as a unicorn, but, "your" Supra, the one you search for and cannot find, the perfect one you spend months or years searching for to make sure it has every detail, color, trans, roof, etc, is referred to as your "unicorn." And why does it matter anyways, lol.
 

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One of my biggest concerns is the people that say the Supra is VERY expensive to own, while others say... oil changes only type deal.

I was wondering the same thing as after looking at prices on aftermarket and oem parts it doesnt seem very pricey considering.

Very good thread, lots of the same questions im asking myself as im looking towards a Supra purchase.

More input from some Supra MKIV owners please.:agreed:
I understand where you guys are coming from... first of all do you work on your own cars or do you have a mechanic? That's is going to cost a lot more because you prob don't want your neighborhood mechanic working on your car you want someone that knows about Supras.

I bought my supra a few months ago. Its great, love it, it's my daily until my lazy ass gets the engine back in my honda odyssey. Its BPU which I thought would be fast enough... its about as fast as my old ls1/240. And after being around 1000hp supras I want more power. Its gonna be a money pit. Now 2k miles later the turbos are starting to smoke. car has 90k on it. running 16psi. little break down of cost... of my on coming build.

TIG welder- 1k
turbo kit custom - 2500
clutch - 2600
ecu- 2000
fuel - 1000

doesn't include building the motor. and all that stuff. which I'm planning later down the road. It sucks because I can either replace the stock turbos=alot of work. or go with a big single but not really worth it to do just a "single kit" you need to do fuel clutch, and stand alone otherwise the car wont be very drivable at all.
 

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I don't think they are referring to the car in general as a unicorn, but, "your" Supra, the one you search for and cannot find, the perfect one you spend months or years searching for to make sure it has every detail, color, trans, roof, etc, is referred to as your "unicorn." And why does it matter anyways, lol.

Like he said the perfect one the dude i got mine from had a pic of every inch of that car and I had him make a video of the car just so I can see it running before I go pick it up!
 
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