Toyota introduced the MR2 Spider model in 2000 and was designed to see how consumers react about it producing and filling a niche for sports car enthusiasts seeking exhilarating performance and bold styling at an affordable price. It is powered by a 1.8-liter twin-cam 16-valve four-cylinder engine that features VVT-I cylinder head technology. The model is able of delivering 138 horsepower and 125 lb. ft. of torque and it can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 6.9 seconds. The power is being sent to the wheels via a standard five-speed manual transmission and also the new thing about the 2001 model is that is also available with an all-new sequential manual transmission. The coachwork features steel panels that are bolted onto a high-rigidity unit-body, making repairs and customization easier and less expensive. The soft-top folds completely out of sight and it is manually operated.
The Toyota MR2 Spyder is a two-seat, mid-engine, soft-top roadster distilled to its most basic nature. Introduced in Spring 2000, it was designed to immediately impact how consumers think about Toyota products and fill a niche for sports car enthusiasts seeking exhilarating performance and bold styling at an affordable price.
The MR2 Spyder was developed to deliver five key criteria, including:
True driver enjoyment, blending good movement...low inertia... and light weight.
A long wheelbase to enhance vehicle handling and fresh new styling.
A mid-engine design for steering and cornering without the weight of the engine up front.
A body structure as simple as possible to allow for easy customization.
In early performance testing, the Spyder proved capable of delivering a level of acceleration, braking and maneuverability that comes very close to vehicles pegged at nearly twice its price.
Weighing in at approximately 2200 pounds, the MR2 Spyder rides on a wide, low-slung platform, supported by MacPherson struts at all four corners. It has a wheelbase of 96.5 inches and an overall length of 153 inches.
The same 1.8-liter twin-cam 16-valve four-cylinder engine offered in the new Celica GT, also powers the Spyder. The engine features VVT-i cylinder head technology, a variable-valve timing with intelligence system similar to the design currently used in Lexus engines. Rated at 138-hp at 6400 rpm and 125 lb-ft of torque at 4400 rpm, the Spyder's favorable power-to-weight ratio has contributed to a zero-to-60 acceleration time of under 6.9 seconds.
Power is applied to the rear wheels of the MR2 Spyder through a standard five-speed manual transmission. New for 2001, MR2 Spyder also is available with an all-new sequential manual transmission (SMT). The MR2 Spyder is the first U.S.-market Toyota model to feature this new, sophisticated transmission. The clutch pedal and gear selector have been replaced with a single shifter. The SMT clutch and gear selector operations are performed by ECU computer controlled actuators and the engine is also equipped with electronic throttle control to allow the ECU to reduce torque during shifts. Upshift or downshift is achieved by moving the selector to the + or - positions. The lack of a clutch provides the convenience of an automatic transmission with the interaction of a manual transmission.
The Spyder's steering system is a newly developed electric hydraulic power unit designed to save weight, while providing exceptional responsiveness and road feedback. The Spyder's braking is equally exceptional, making its four-wheel ABS system capable of 70-to-zero deceleration in only 167 feet.
The Spyder's coachwork features steel panels that are bolted onto a high-rigidity unit-body, making repairs and customization easier and less expensive. There are storage compartments under the front hood and behind the seatbacks. The center cluster console is designed to accommodate audio equipment, or can be removed completely, for additional weight savings. The manually operated convertible soft-top folds completely out of sight.
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