“This is the same car,” we heard that several times. For starters, Toyota didn’t have the GT-86 at all. Only Subaru and Scion had their much anticipated flat-4, RWD coupes on display. Both were definitely production models. One looked like it had certainly been driven a few times a short distance. Several of the folks in our group were kicking this around as our next cars. It’s a very unique vehicle, 7,000rpm redline with 197hp and 151torks. Not to mention is an affordable RWD coupe, which is very rare in the non-gigantic segment (aka. ‘not camaro, mustang, or challenger segment’).
We did get a nice view inside both cars. They wouldn’t let us sit in them, but we got close enough to see the differences. The Scion definitely looks a bit lower rent, the Subaru has the full alcantara and WRX STI treatment on the seats, shifter, and steering wheel. Both carry the same size 215 profile tires. Both have nearly equal sized brakes. The styling is very close. We definitely liked the blue of the BRZ a lot more than the silver Scion.
We also noticed a few other tidbits, like the different side emblems. The FR-S has the small GT-86 monikers on the side panels. The BRZ lacked this treatment. They really are slightly different cars. I’m not sure how Subaru will command more, even significantly more money, even with a nicer interior. We really liked the look of the BRZ shifter and gauge coloring, but that is all purely subjective stuff.
We definitely preferred the look of the Subaru from behind. It doesn’t have those godawful altezza tails that the silver FR-S has. Again, we’re not sure if this justifies the added price. Keep in mind that we don’t know the pricing yet either. Both had plastic rear splitters.
Overall, we’re really excited for this car. It very well could be the defining sports car of a generation. Most Japanese performance is stretching into the 30′s (Lancer Evo, 370Z, a later model s2000, etc). It’s a hope a light, RWD car that is available for the low-20′s could even exist. This very well could be the Miata Coupe they never built, even if it does have the lineage of a wild mutt dog.