Toyota’s 2JZ-GTE twin-turbo engine is probably the most legendary tuner engine of all time. Toyota put it in the MKIV Supra starting in 1993, and it quickly gained a reputation as one of the nastiest and most build-able inline-six motors ever created. Even today, more than three decades after the engine’s original debut in 1991, enthusiasts are still building 2JZs to well over 1,000 whp. As many of them will tell you, f you’re serious about a high powered 2JZ build, you will want to consider upgrading your 2JZ intake manifold.
The Supra intake manifold is more than suitable for stock power levels and average builds, but for those wanting more than 600 whp an aftermarket intake manifold can really help with top-end power. That’s why one of the best 2JZ upgrades is to the intake manifold. You will gain horsepower while shedding weight and improving efficiency.
This guide will cover everything you need to know about upgrading your 2JZ intake manifold. We’ll cover what intake manifolds are, before exploring differences between aftermarket and OEM, and then we’ll cover benefits to upgrading. Finally, we’ll give you recommendations of the top 2JZ intake manifolds on the market to choose from. Let’s get started.
*This guide applies to the twin-turbo 2JZ-GTE engine. However, it is possible for the naturally aspirated 2JZ-GE engine to be modified to take the 2JZ-GTE front facing intake manifold (FFIM). The FFIM mod is outside the scope of this article, but it is possible to use 2JZ-GTE intake manifolds on the 2JZ-GE engine with the FFIM.
Table of Contents
- What is a 2JZ Intake Manifold?
- 2JZ Intake Manifold Benefits
- 5 Best 2JZ Intake Manifolds
- 2JZ Intake Manifold Guide Summary
What is a 2JZ Intake Manifold?
Before we get into the differences between OEM and aftermarket 2JZ intake manifolds, let’s talk about what intake manifolds are. Intake manifolds are part of the system that pushes air into the 2JZ engine. The chain starts with the intake filter and tubing, which attaches to the turbochargers, which then connects via piping to the throttle body. Most setups have an intercooler in the piping between the turbos and throttle body to cool the compressed (charged) air. The throttle body attaches to the intake manifold, which then attaches directly to the cylinder head.
Toyota Supra Intake Manifold Parts
There are a few important parts of the intake manifold that we’ll mention here first. The plenum is the “top” part of the intake manifold that looks like one large cylinder. Connected to the plenum on 2JZ intake manifolds are six individual runners or ports – one runner per cylinder. Inside of the runners are butterfly valves that open or close to determine how much air flows into the cylinders.
While it’s not part of the intake manifold, the throttle body is also important. The throttle body controls how much air flows into the intake manifold from the turbochargers. Similar to the valves in the manifold runners, throttle bodies have a throttle blade that opens/closes to determine airflow. On 2JZ engines, it’s common to get a larger throttle body when getting a larger intake manifold.
Now that we have an understanding of intake manifolds let’s move on to upgrading them.
2JZ Intake Manifold: OEM vs Aftermarket
There are important differences between the stock 2JZ intake manifold and aftermarket versions. The most obvious is going to be the size of the intake runners and plenum. Aftermarket Supra intake manifolds are going to have wider runners to increase flow and decrease restriction. They will also have larger and better flowing plenums.
The wider intake runners will allow for more air to pass through the manifold and into the engine. The better flowing plenum accommodates the shorter but wider runners, while also allowing for proper pulse-reversion control.
Pulse-reversion control, without getting too technical, is a phenomenon of any intake manifold. Basically, when the butterfly valves inside of the intake manifold close, like when a driver lays off the gas pedal, the air inside of the runners is forced back up into the plenum. Properly designed plenums minimize turbulence and allow for smooth reversion of the exhaust pulses back into the runners once the valves reopen. Poorly designed plenums exacerbate turbulence and impede flow.
Aftermarket intakes are also usually made of lighter material than stock versions. Stock 2JZ manifolds are built from heavy cast iron, but most aftermarket manifolds are made from aluminum. Aluminum manifolds are lighter and flow better, making them an obvious choice over cast iron.
When to Upgrade From the Stock Supra Intake Manifold
The time to upgrade from the stock intake manifold is somewhat debatable. Generally, it’s accepted that the stock intake manifold flows well enough to achieve 1,000 whp. However, that doesn’t mean that you have to have a 1,000+ whp build to benefit from an upgraded manifold.
You probably won’t see much of a benefit at power levels below 600 whp, but from 600 whp – 1,000 whp you will see substantial power increases with an aftermarket manifold. The improved flow and pulse reversion will increase peak power and improve the power band.
It’s important to note that wider and shorter intake runners, like those on many aftermarket 2JZ intake manifolds, have a tendency to push peak torque to higher RPMs. This increases top-end power and the expense of low-end power, and might actually make for a slightly smaller power band. Still, the increase in top-end power is usually worth it, even if you lose some grunt down low.
Overall, you don’t need to upgrade your intake manifold unless you plan on going past 1,000 whp. However, if you do decide to, builds from 600 whp to 1,000 whp will still benefit. We’ll get into how much you can expect to gain a little later, but it’s roughly 40 whp – 70 whp.
Upgrading the Toyota Supra Throttle Body
Most Supra intake manifold kits come with larger throttle bodies than stock to accommodate the larger plenum. The stock throttle slims down from 71mm in the front to 65mm where it attaches to the stock manifold. Similar to the intake manifold, the stock throttle body flows surprisingly well and is capable of 1,000 whp.
However, the larger size of aftermarket intake manifold plenums creates a compelling reason to also upgrade the throttle body. To truly take advantage of all the benefits of the new manifold, a throttle body that is specifically sized for it is necessary. The smaller stock throttle body will still flow adequately, but it will be less than with a larger throttle body. If you are really looking to get the most of your upgraded 2JZ intake manifold, it doesn’t make sense to leave the stock throttle body in place. It might flow well enough to not be a restriction, but a better flowing throttle body will still make more power.
6 VS 12 Injector Supra Intake Manifolds
There are generally two kinds of 2JZ intake manifolds. Standard intake manifolds are designed for six injectors, but there are also big port manifolds for 12 injector setups. The 2JZ-GTE in its stock form has six injectors, but really big horsepower builds add supplemental injectors for extra fueling. The manifolds look almost identical, with the difference being an extra bung for the supplemental injectors on each runner, and slightly wider runners.
2JZ Intake Manifold Benefits
The benefits of upgrading the 2JZ intake manifold are:
- +20-80 whp (depending on build level)
- Decreased intake restriction and improved flow
- Weight Reduction
- Louder exhaust volume
The biggest benefit to upgrading the 2JZ intake manifold is going to be the power increases. On smaller builds you can see gains of 20-30 whp. Larger builds, those above 700 whp, can add 40-80 whp with an upgraded and better flowing manifold. The increase is going to be more on the top-end than on the low-end, but the majority of the powerband will see increases. It’s impossible to give precise numbers for gains, because every setup is different, but these are averages from Supra builds.
Another benefit of an upgraded 2JZ intake manifold is weight reduction. The lighter aluminum or cast aluminum sheds crucial weight over the heavy cast iron version. Aluminum manifolds also usually outflow cast iron manifolds, meaning more power.
Finally, you will likely see an increase in exhaust volume following the installation of a larger intake manifold. It won’t be drastic, like installing a cat back, but the volume will definitely be louder.
Veilside Supra Intake Manifolds
If you have spent any time talking to the Supra community about intake manifolds, you have undoubtedly heard of the Veilside intake manifold. The Veilside was one of the most popular 2JZ intake manifolds in the 1990s and early-2000s. While it wasn’t great for low end performance and spool, it made huge top-end power.
Unfortunately, the 2JZ Veilside intake manifold has not been manufactured since the late-’90s-early-’00s. There are some genuine and rare ones still available in the wild, but it’s not an easy find. Many companies produced knockoff “Veilside style” intake manifolds using supposedly similar dimensions, but they do not perform nearly as well. If you can find one available then it will also likely be pretty pricey – and used.
While the 2JZ Veilsides were certainly solid performers, there’s no reason to go to extraordinary lengths to seek them out. In addition, the “Veilside style” manifolds are cheap clones that should probably be avoided too for the most part. All the 2JZ intake manifolds listed below perform exceptionally, are better than knockoffs, and won’t carry a crazy price tag.
5 Best 2JZ Intake Manifolds
The top 5 best 2JZ intake manifolds are:
- Sleeper Designs
- Virtual Works
- Sound Performance
- Ross Machine Racing
These intake manifolds combine the best in price, performance, quality, and aesthetics. While there are literally dozens of different manifolds available, these are the top options if you’re looking to upgrade. We included both standard and big or race port manifolds in the guide, for the broadest selection possible.
1) Hypertune Supra Intake Manifold
Price: $1,669.00 – $1,980.00
Runner Ports: Street and Race (6/12 injectors)
The Hypertune 2JZ intake manifold is one of the most well known in the Supra community. It has been around since the early-2000s and has developed a reputation as one of the top performing manifolds on the market. It is great for mid-range and top-end power gains, and is capable of massive horsepower.
Hypertune offers two different Supra intake manifolds, both a street and big port race style. The street can flow up to 1,500 hp, and the big port is designed for 1,500+ hp builds. The plenums both have velocity stacks to increase airflow velocity. The Hypertunes are sold without fuel rails, but do come with throttle bodies. There is also a 102 mm throttle body, which is a direct fit for the big port version but can fit the standard, too. There is also a 90 mm throttle body for the standard manifold.
The Hypertune intake manifolds are also highly customizable. You can get anodized and powder coating for the plenum, runners, throttle body, and head gasket flange. The Hypertunes are some of the best on the market, and you can see gains of 40-80 whp depending on build size.
2) Sleeper Designs RMR Style Supra Intake Manifold
Price: Contact SD for Price
Runner Ports: Street (6 injectors)
Purchase Link: Sleeper Designs Intake Manifold
The next 2JZ intake manifold option we have is the Sleeper Designs RMR style manifold. The RMR 6 port manifold was one of the top Supra manifolds of the late-’90s and early-’00s – like the Veilside. However, the 6 port version was discontinued in the late-’00s. Sleeper Designs’ intake manifold is based on the RMR style, but is not a cheap clone.
The SD intake manifold has lots of great reviews and is a top option in the Supra community. SD redesigned the intake recently to include 1-piece lightweight billet runners instead of fabricated runners. This helps reduce weight and prevents the necessary modification to the stock location fuse/relay box and battery.
SD designed their 2JZ intake manifold to work with the RMR 90 mm throttle body. Gains are approximately 40-80 whp, depending on build size, right in line with the other top performers. The SD runner ports are set up only for six injector setups and not 12.
3) Virtual Works Supra Intake Manifold
Price: $2,850.00 – $3,000.00
Runner Ports: Street (6 injectors)
Purchase Link: Virtual Works Supra Intake Manifold
Our third 2JZ intake manifold recommendation is the tried and true Virtual Works intake manifold. The Virtual Works manifold is another long-standing manifold in the Supra community that is highly revered. It is capable of flowing over 1,300 whp, and is primarily designed for builds of over 700 hp.
The VW Supra intake manifold kit comes with a 95 mm throttle body and additional upgraded throttle cable. Importantly, VW charges an extra $150 for their intake manifold if you buy it from scratch. If you send in the lower runners from an OEM Supra manifold they do not charge extra, as they reuse them for the core.
The VW intake manifold performs just as well as the Hypertune or SD manifolds. It was actually shown to outflow the Veilside intake manifold. The VW runners’ ports are set up for street applications and six injectors, and are not 12 injector compatible.
4) Sound Performance Supra Intake Manifold
Runner Ports: Street (6 injectors)
Purchase Link: Sound Performance 2JZ Intake Manifold
The next Supra intake manifold we recommend is the Sound Performance Race intake manifold. It is another very solid intake manifold that has been around for many years. There are countless Supra builds utilizing the SP intake manifold. It is important to note, that though it is called a race manifold, the ports are set up for six-injector street applications.
The SP comes with a 75 mm throttle body, which is the closest to stock size out of all our suggested manifolds. You can always put a larger throttle body on there to increase flow if needed. Similar to the Virtual Works manifold, sending in your lower intake runners saves you from extra costs since they reuse them in the core. For SP, the savings is pretty considerable at $400, so it’s something to keep in mind.
Overall, the Sound Performance intake manifold is another top option for 2JZ Supras. It probably won’t flow as some of the other options, but it will definitely be good for mid-range and top-end.
5) Ross Machine Racing Supra Intake Manifold
Runner Ports: Race (12 injectors)
Purchase Link: RMR 2JZ Intake Manifold
For many years, the RMR intake manifold was the top option on the market with the Veilside. In the late-’90s and early-’00s, they were the most sought out intake manifolds available. Unfortunately, RMR has since discontinued their street version that was 6 injector capable, and only makes the larger race port 12 injector setup now.
RMR designed their intake manifold out of lightweight but durable T6061 aluminum stock. They also engineered it to take the 90mm throttle body from the Ford Coyote 5.0 L V8 engine. It comes with dual fuel rail fittings and fuel rail clamps to accommodate the extra set of injectors.
Flow and power wise, the RMR Supra intake manifold is going to be the absolute top of the line. It is meant for ultra high horsepower builds, and that’s exactly what it delivers. If you have a big 1,500+hp build, the RMR is definitely your best choice.
2JZ Intake Manifold Guide Summary
The 2JZ engine is one of the most legendary motors ever created, and if you really want to make some serious horsepower out of it then intake manifolds are a great mod. You’ll see a considerable improvement to horsepower and torque output, while also making your engine more aesthetically pleasing and lighter.
We looked at a couple of different 2JZ intake manifolds in this guide, and they are all very solid. The Hypertune and RMR manifolds have been on the market the longest and are tried and true options. The Sleeper Designs, Virtual Works, and Sound Performance manifolds are also solid performers that have great reputations in the Supra community. You really can’t go wrong with any of these manifolds, as they are all top options and performers.
What intake manifold are you thinking about picking for your build and what goals are you looking to achieve? Let us know in the comments below!