The Subaru BRZ is the company’s own variation to the Toyota GT86. A collaboration between the said companies, the GT86’s sister model sports the same lightweight and other common parts. The only difference we noticed was with the interior design, the softer and grippier rear suspension, and the badges.
The Subaru BRZ is promoted as the better equipped, pricier, and more focused version of the Toyota. Apart from being a collaboration between two big manufacturers, the BRZ also takes its cue from the Porsche Cayman R. But the BRZ is 100kg lighter than the Cayman R.
The BRZ’s sole engine is fun to drive on the road. The four-cylinder 2.0-litre petrol unit has a low chassis that allows for better handling. This engine comes with either the six-speed automatic or manual gearbox. The manual achieves a 62mph sprint in 7.6 seconds. The automatic is slightly slower at 8.2 seconds. Both are relatively fast with the manual’s 140mph top speed and the automatic’s 130mph maximum. The automatic gearbox’s modern twin-clutch semi-automatic is able to shift gears smoothly and quickly. Throttle is blipped upon going on the down shift—an experience race car fans and driving enthusiasts will appreciate.
Handling is another great asset of the Subaru BRZ. We can attribute this to the vehicle’s low gravity centre, as the front seats and engine are positioned low into the chassis. Another effect of this feature is the car’s ability to shift quickly into any direction at each turn from the steering wheel. Feedback is adequate as well on the steering wheel, allowing for well distributed weighted steering and accurate movements on the front wheel. Even on high speeds the vehicle maintains enough balance and rarely understeers as it goes quickly into corners. Stability is also maintained at very high speeds via the 2570mm wheelbase.
The Subaru BRZ also boasts of supreme comfort in its cabin interior. The 17-inch wheels make the vehicle compliant ride wise and the seats are supportive enough for any type of journey. The interior is simple in design, focusing on basic functions to get the job done. Drivers will have no problem viewing the big rev counter and reading the speedometer on the left side. The right side shows the fuel gauges and temperature. Readability is found in all these necessary features.
The BRZ’s 2.0-litre flat-four front engine or FB20 is not much of a change from the Impreza. Although the engine sits lower in the engine bay than its predecessor, the engine only has a 197bhp output at 7000rpm. It’s no more powerful than what you get with an Impreza.
Being a collaboration between two big car manufacturers, your decision in getting the BRZ won’t be a matter of budget or features. Since the BRZ sports many features comparable to the Toyota, it will be a decision on how well the BRZ fares in combining some of each brand’s features. Overall the car performs well ride wise and in handling, but the limited engine could deter the more serious car buyer.
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