• Imagine, For A Moment, that Subaru And Toyota Built A High-Performance AWD Hatchback

Subaru and Toyota might join forces again, this time around for a hot-hatchback

Subaru and Toyota, the companies that co-developed the 86 and BRZ twins, might be working on a new high-performance car. According to a report from Japan, the two brands are jointly developing an all-wheel-drive hatchback inspired by rally-spec machines from the 1990s. Sounds exciting, doesn’t it? But what is it?

Imagine, For A Moment, that Subaru And Toyota Built A High-Performance AWD Hatchback
- image 970175

The report comes from Japan’s Best Car magazine and claims that the jointly developed hatchback would be the size of the Subaru Impreza hatchback.

The vehicle would be powered by a turbocharged, 2.4-liter boxer engine, also sourced from Subaru.

This mill powers the latest-generation BRZ in naturally aspirated form, but it also motivates the Ascent in turbo layout with 260 horsepower. The reports also mentions a Subaru-sourced all-wheel-drive system.

At first glance, it sounds like a Subaru-developed project. Basically a slightly different variant of the existing WRX STI. Are we looking at a Toyota-badged version of Subaru’s iconic hatchback? It sure seems like it, but Subaru isn’t willing to share the WRX STI, so it might be a different vehicle altogether. But there’s another problem here. Subaru doesn’t really need another WRX STI, so maybe this hot-hatchback will be sold as a Toyota only. Could it be a Toyota-badged WRX STI with a 2.4-liter engine instead of the STI’s 2.5 four-banger?

Imagine, For A Moment, that Subaru And Toyota Built A High-Performance AWD Hatchback
- image 970176

Some reports claim that this project might spawn the much rumored next-generation Celica. Toyota recently refreshed its trademark for the Celica name, a badge that it hasn’t used since 2006. Granted, the old Celica wasn’t exactly a traditional hatchback, but the high-performance engine and the AWD system fall in line perfectly with the iconic Celica GT-Four (All-Trac in the U.S.). Other reports say that this would be the hot-hatchback that Toyota promised to bring to the U.S. in the absence of the GR Yaris. Up until now, it was believed that this hatch would be based on the Corolla.

It’s not very clear what we’re dealing with here and some of the info coming from Japan doesn’t add up, but we wouldn’t mind seeing a new hot-hatchback on the road soon. A Toyota-bodied Subaru (just like the BRZ) isn’t a bad idea, but it remains to be seen if this new joint-venture is more than just a rumor.

Source: Best Car Web (Japanese)

Ciprian Florea
Ciprian Florea
Senior Editor and Supercar Expert - ciprian@topspeed.com
Ciprian's passion for everything with four wheels (and more) started back when he was just a little boy, and the Lamborghini Countach was still the coolest car poster you could hang on your wall. Ciprian's career as a journalist began long before earning a Bachelor's degree, but it was only after graduating that his love for cars became a profession.  Read full bio
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