With a revised version of the Toyota GT 86 / Scion FR-S rumored to arrive in 2016, the Japanese coupe might finally get the more powerful drivetrain it deserves. Meanwhile, Scion has released yet another "all show and no go" version of the FR-S that gets all sorts of goodies and gadgets but the same 200-horsepower engine.

Meet the FR-S Release Series 2.0, described as "the most stylish version of the sports car ever offered."

If the name sounds familiar is because Scion has already launched a Release Series version of the FR-S. It made its official debut at the 2014 New York Auto Show with a mild aerodynamic kit, a TRD quad exhaust system, a lowered suspension, HID headlamps, and black seats with a "T" pattern. Only 1,500 units were built.

The Release Series 2.0 is pretty much the same thing, sans the TRD exhaust but with a more luxurious cabin. "The FR-S is well known for being a fabulous sports car, and now we’re taking it up a notch in the luxury arena,” said Scion Vice President Andrew Gilleland. “It’s the perfect car to take from the race track during the day to the red carpet that evening.”

So, what’s it all about and how much does it cost? Keep reading to find out.

Continue reading to learn more about the 2016 Scion FR-S Release Series 2.0.

  • 2016 Scion FR-S Release Series 2.0
  • Year:
    2016
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • 0-60 time:
    6 sec. (Est.)
  • Top Speed:
    130 mph (Est.)
  • Price:
    29510
  • Price:
  • car segment:
  • body style:

Exterior

2016 Scion FR-S Release Series 2.0
- image 653550

With only a special paint, 17-inch alloy wheels, and a small aero kit as extras, the Release Series 2.0’s exterior is far from impressive, but it does stand out when compared to a standard FR-S. The Lunar Storm paint is unique to this model, while the gloss-black, multi-spoke TRD rims give the coupe a racier appearance. The aero kit adds only a black front splitter and a body-colored trunk lid spoiler, but it’s just enough to make a difference. Finally, this special-edition model also comes with HID headlamps and LED daytime running lights. Needless to say, the Release Series 2.0’s exterior is indeed stylish and a bit more aggressive at the same time.

Interior

2016 Scion FR-S Release Series 2.0
- image 653555
2016 Scion FR-S Release Series 2.0
- image 653553
2016 Scion FR-S Release Series 2.0
- image 653552

This is where the Release Series 2.0 received a lot more attention. Although Scions are far from luxurious on the inside, this particular FR-S does have a more premium feel. The first thing that catches the eye is the black upholstery with brown (Scion calls it "camel") accents. The bolstered seats are part leather and part Alcantara and feature brown stripes on the sides, as well as similar inserts on the headrests. The front seats are heated.

The same two-tone, black-and-brown theme carries over to the leather-trimmed steering wheel and the door panels. More leather is found on the shift knob, parking brake lever, knee pads, and center armrest this time finished in black and with brown stitching. More "camel" accent stitching adorns the dash insert, while each car has its Release Series badge embroidered in the same color (sequentially numbered from 1 to 1000).

The push-button start feature and the dual-zone automatic climate control system round off the special interior.

Drivetrain

2016 Scion FR-S Release Series 2.0
- image 653554

Unfortunately for those still waiting for a more powerful FR-S, the Release Series 2.0 is motivated by the same 200-horsepower and 151-pound-feet unit found in the standard coupe. The 2.0-liter, flat-four engine can be had with either a six-speed manual transmission or a six-speed automatic gearbox with paddle shifter and Dynamic Rev Management technology. Sprinting from 0 to 60 mph takes a little more than seven seconds, while top speed sits at 136 mph. Fuel economy remains unchanged at 34 mpg on the highway and 25 mpg in the city.

Prices

Pricing for the Release Series 2.0 starts from $29,510 for the manual transmission and $30,610 for the automatic gearbox. The sticker doesn’t include the delivery, processing and handling fee of $795. The special-edition comes with a $2,310 premium over the standard model, which isn’t bad considering the unique paint, the aero kit, and all that leather inside the cabin. Only 1,000 units will be built.

Competition

Mazda MX-5

2016 Mazda MX-5 High Resolution Exterior
- image 614490

If you want the same driver-focused experience and you don’t mind not having a metal roof above your head, the Mazda MX-5 is the sports car you need to consider. Redesigned for 2016, the current Miata is down on power compared to the FR-S, but it’s actually a bit faster thanks to its lower weight and similar torque. On the other hand, the MX-5 has a smaller trunk and offers seating for only two people. At $24,915, the Mazda is more affordable than the FR-S and the Release Series 2.0.

Find out more about the Mazda MX-5 here.

Subaru BRZ

2014 - 2015 Subaru BRZ High Resolution Exterior
- image 519967

If you’re not comfortable with a Scion badge, but still want an FR-S, you can look to Subaru for a similar car with a "BRZ" badge. Only minor exterior details set the two apart, while the engine and the transmissions are identical. The suspension setup of the Subaru is different from the Scion, however. The BRZ is also more affordable than the FR-S, starting from $25,395. But, only if you’re happy with the manual transmission. For the automatic, you need to go with the more expensive Limited trim and pay $28,495 before options.

Read more about the Subaru BRZ here.

Conclusion

2016 Scion FR-S Release Series 2.0
- image 653549

When it comes to exclusivity, Scion isn’t the kind of automaker you’d look into, but the FR-S Release Series 2.0 changes that a bit. While it might not be more powerful than the standard FR-S, the Release Series 2.0 is an appealing proposition to FR-S/BRZ enthusiasts in need of a more premium interior and a bespoke exterior. The Lunar Storm paint might not be to everyone’s taste, but at least it’s unique to this limited-edition model — at least for now. Until the FR-S gets an updated drivetrain, the Release Series 2.0 is the best option if you want to stand out at local FR-S and BRZ meetings.

  • Leave it
    • * The same old 200-horsepower engine
    • * An update FR-S is right around the corner
    • * The Miata is quicker and more agile

Press Release

Drivers of the 2016 Scion FR-S Release Series 2.0 will look better than ever in the most stylish version of the sports car ever offered. The new FR-S Release Series 2.0 comes with luxurious appointments and premium features, and with just 1,000 vehicles available, it’s the most elusive and exclusive Scion Release Series yet.

2016 Scion FR-S Release Series 2.0
- image 653555

The interior creates the lap of luxury with heated seats in black Alcantara and leather with camel-colored accents. The same black and camel theme continues to the leather-trimmed steering wheel while the shift knob and parking brake lever are covered in black leather. Camel trim also appears on the door armrest and the upper door trim while the center armrest and knee pads are black. Camel accent stitching is prominent throughout the interior and embroidered on the dash insert is the release series badge, sequentially numbered from 1 to 1000.

Additional luxury features include Smart key with push-button start, dual-zone automatic climate control and HID headlamps with LED daylight running lamps.

On the outside, the Release Series 2.0 will make a statement with Lunar Storm paint and 17-inch forged alloy wheels. For added flair and distinction, a unique aero kit features spoilers on both the front lip and trunk.

2016 Scion FR-S Release Series 2.0
- image 653556

“The FR-S is well known for being a fabulous sports car, and now we’re taking it up a notch in the luxury arena,” said Scion Vice President Andrew Gilleland. “It’s the perfect car to take from the race track during the day to the red carpet that evening.”

The 2016 FR-S Release Series 2.0 will come with either a six-speed manual transmission or a six-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters and Dynamic Rev Management® technology. The manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) will be $29,510 for the manual transmission and $30,610 for the automatic transmission, excluding the delivery, processing and handling (DPH) fee of $795.

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