The Toyota/Subaru FT-86 creation has been buzzing about the internet since the two announced their partnership, but after months of concepts and hearsay, a Subaru source has provided a bit of official information about the new sports car. The FT-86 will be arriving in the U.S. badged as a Scion FR-S and will feature one of the lowest centers of gravity of any vehicle out on the market. It will actually be right behind the Porsche GT3 and the Ferrari 458, thanks to the boxer engine provided to Toyota by Subaru. Subaru’s boxer engine has a flat, low profile that balances weight efficiently and provides quick handling response and flat, confident cornering.
We’re expected to see debuts of all the FT-86 variants when the Tokyo Motor Show opens its doors in December 2011 so we’ll have more details on those models at that time. Subaru’s version of the FT-86 is also being considered for an STI version which could come sporting a new generation, naturally aspirated (not turbocharged as with other STI models) 2.0-liter, four-cylinder boxer engine.
Speaking of the STI, Subaru sources also say that the new STI will take at least two years before coming to the market and will be drastically different from the base Impreza. In fact, this is part of Subaru’s plan to separate their conventional models from their performance models. The Impreza was put together with an eye out for economy, but the STI will be a different beast altogether. It will get its own engine, one that will have nothing to do with the Toyota engine created for the FT-86 project and will make it easier for Subaru to market the vehicle as a performance model. No specific figures were given, but we expect the new STI to carry a turbocharged version of the 2.5 liter boxer engine with more than 305 HP on tap. The engine will be mated to a fully synchronized close-ratio 6-speed manual transmission.
The wait is finally over! After long and drawn out wait, it has been officially confirmed: both the Toyota FT-86 and the Subaru BRZ will make their highly-anticipated world debuts at next month’s Tokyo Motor Show. Both models will be displayed in final production form, although its best to point out that according to Toyota officials, the production version of the FT-86 won’t have anything in common with the concepts seen before.
Both models will be powered by a Subaru-derived flat-four engine, mated to a six-speed manual gearbox. For the FT-86, Toyota has confirmed a total output of 200 HP, while output for the BRZ will be kept "under 300 HP." The two models will be almost identical, with subtle and individual changes being made to the wheel designs and to the front grille.
As for the Subaru version, a few things have also been confirmed: it won’t get a turbocharged or an all-wheel-drive version. Convertible versions has also been denied.
Both models will go on sale in mid-2012, with priced for Toyota model to start from about $20,000 and for Subaru from $25,000.
With just two months before its official debut at the 2011 Tokyo Auto Show, the production version of the Subaru BRZ concept has been caught testing once again, this time revealing slightly more details than before. The car is still heavily camouflaged, but you can easily notice a design language similar to the one used on the BRZ’s cousin, the Toyota FT-86.
The Subaru BRZ will be offered with a new generation 2.0-liter, four-cylinder boxer engine and combined with a manual or automatic transmission. It is believed that for the STI version, the output will go up to about 300 HP. People have been discussing whether the BRZ will be an all-wheel-drive or a RDW model, but Subaru has officially confirmed that the engine will send its power to the rear wheels.
The Subaru BRZ will go on sale starting next year with a base price of under $25,000, while the STI may hit $35,000.
At this rate, we’d probably use a paddle and a canoe to get to Frankfurt, Germany for the year’s biggest automotive event. That’s how huge this event is shaping up to be and it’s about to get even bigger after Subaru has announced their intention to bring a new "technology concept" called the BRZ Prologue - Boxer Sports Car Architecture II.
The BRZ, which stands for ’Boxer engine’, ’Rear-wheel drive’, and ’Zenith’, could very well be the Japanese automaker’s answer to Toyota’s version of the FT-86 that, ironically, the two are co-developing.
We don’t know exactly what to expect from the BRZ other than thinking it will be an RWD sports coupe and that it "embodies ultimate passion for the new sports car and confidence in its distinctive trademark and core technology." Subaru hasn’t revealed anything other than announcing that they’re bringing the car to Frankfurt and that the start of production is being planned for the spring of 2012, but hopefully, everything becomes crystal clear when the biggest auto show of the calendar year opens this September.
UPDATE 09/13/11: You remember when we said that we didn’t really know what to expect from the Subaru BRZ Concept heading to the Frankfurt Motor Show? Well, we certainly didn’t expect what we saw. You see, we where actually expecting something tangible that could take the look of a concept car. But what we got looked something like an X-ray mock-up version of the concept, which incidentally still doesn’t have all the elements that would constitute an actual car. What we did find out, and its something that could prove useful in the future, is that the car will carry a naturally-aspirated 2.0-liter horizontally-opposed Boxer engine that features Toyota’s direct-injection technology called the D-4S.
UPDATE 09/22/11: After being postponed for some time, Subaru will finally be bringing a full concept version of the BRZ sports car to the 2011 Los Angeles Auto Show in November. However, this concept won’t reveal anything about the production version scheduled to appear in December. Turns out, both Subaru and Toyota have agreed not to display anything from the final production version of the BRZ or the FT-86 until the vehicles’ official debuts in Tokyo. So we’ve basically been chasing the BRZ and FT-86 carrots only to find out they are actually turds. Not cool. (Car And Driver)