After making its official debut two months ago at the Tokyo Auto Salon, the Toyota FT-86 Concept a modified 21st century incarnation of the old AE-86 Toyota Corolla better known as the Hachi Roku has already been spotted on the cover of the Japanese Option magazine, a journal that can be considered the bible for JDM tuning enthusiasts. Mimicking the classic Sprinter Trueno two tone paint scheme with its red and black stripes the tuned FT-86 also appears to be wearing what could be an oversized set of deep dish Panasport rims, a true nod to Initial D.
Just like the Japanese cartoon show prompted Toyota to start selling twenty year old parts again and has made the rear wheel drive Corolla even more valuable today than it was off the showroom floor by breathing a breath of fresh air into the affordable and fun to drive new car segment. Our hope is that the production version of the FT-86 gives Hyundai’s Genesis Coupe a kick in the pants and gets American automakers back into the sport compact market, which has been empty since General Motors nixed the Pontiac Solstice and Saturn Sky from their lineup. Hopefully there is more than meets the eye to this red and black FT-86, but it is unlikely that we will find out until next year’s Tokyo Auto Salon, or an Initial D remake.