Tuesday, November 29, 2011

New Subaru BRZ Sports Coupe

After the unveiling of the Toyota 86 (GT 86 in Europe) on Saturday, it's time for Subaru to take center stage with the presentation of its version of the jointly developed rear-wheel drive sports coupe in production guise.
The new BRZ was revealed today less than two weeks after Subaru exhibited the STI-badged concept model at the Los Angeles Auto Show, and just before the sports coupe makes its first public outing under the spotlight at the 2011 Tokyo Motor Show on Wednesday, November 30.
To the surprise of no one, the production BRZ loses the concept’s neat aero-kit with the large rear wing and carbon-fiber parts, but no need to worry as it's almost certain that Subaru's STI division will offer either the same or similar components as an option in due time.
Even though we knew from day one that the Subaru BRZ, the Toyota 86 and the upcoming Scion FR-S were all jointly developed by Toyota and Subaru, we had some hope that the cars might differ in appearance and flavor. As you can see for yourself, this never happened – at least with the BRZ and the 86.
From this first set of pictures, we see that the exterior styling changes between the BRZ and 86 are limited only to the re-sculptured front bumper, the alloy wheel designs, the fender trims and the tail lamp graphics (even the shape remains the same). We don't have any photos of the interior yet, but we’re willing to bet that there won't be any noticeable differences between the two cars.
The same goes for the mechanical hardware with the BRZ and the 86 sharing Subaru's 2.0-liter flat-four engine with Toyota’s “D-4S” direct injection and port injection technology, which is rated at 200-horsepower and 205Nm (151 lb-ft) of peak torque.
Power is transferred to the rear wheels through a six-speed manual gearbox with a short stroke shift lever or an optional six-speed automatic with paddle shifts on the steering wheel, while the BRZ also gets a specially tuned electronic stability control. The basic model will ride on 17-inch wheels wrapped around 215/45R17 rubber.
We could go on with the dimensions and the suspension setup but we'd be practically repeating what we said about the 86. In fact, come to think of it, we could have just swapped the words "Toyota" with "Subaru" and "86" with "BRZ" and be done with it. Too late now…
By John Halas


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