It wasn’t too long ago that the T88 turbo was something only fit for drag racing and highway pulls. Huge, laggy, and very spiky in its delivery, the T88 was the Big Kahuna, and using it on a road course was not for the faint of heart.
Nowadays, drag turbos are even bigger, and so the T88 seems medium-sized by comparison. It now seems well-suited to accompany a motor in a track-oriented JZA80 Supra, somehow. Perhaps they’re a little crazy in Japan, but with a slew of supportive modifications, this Toyota’s owner makes the monstrous turbocharger work. And work it does – well enough to keep a modified Ferrari F360 Challenge in his sights. In fact, he looks slightly quicker.
The 2JZ-GTE motor is kept cool with an enormous ARC intercooler, which looks like a set of bared, gleaming teeth in the mouth of a dragon. The familiar six-cylinder howl and turbo whoosh come thanks to an Amuse R1 titanium exhaust, and appropriately-strong stopping power is due to the Endless big brakes. With a massive surge of torque in the mid-range, the T88 has been made somewhat usable, but it still makes the Advan A050 tires chew for grip whenever it comes on full-song.
What’s surprising is how well the car keeps up with the Ferrari mid-corner and even at the corner exit. The mid-engine layout in the Italian supercar does give it the edge in traction, but the Supra manages, even if it means dialing in a bit of opposite lock while the rear wheels spin. Sideways or not, the Supra generates a surprising amount of launch and of course, the jet engine sitting under the hood gives it more than enough poke to outgun the Ferrari on the straight. However, it seems that the Supra’s driver enjoys the sound of the 360’s exhaust, or simply loves staring at its rear haunches, since when his engine power allows him to squirt by, he upshifts and respectfully declines. For a bit, anyways.