Toyota GT86, like its sister model Subaru BRZ, was already a very interesting car, but had to struggle a little with the 2.0-liter boxer engine from Subaru: the maximum torque of 205 Nm was available only at 6400 – 6600 rpm, i.e. You always had to drive at high speed to be able to summon the Force… but it didn’t really seem like enough. Sure: it would have been enough fun if you knew how to subtly “switch” the lush performance gaps, but this should have been “a bit more”. And now it can.
Toyota entrusted its in-house racing division, Gazoo Racing, with the development of the GT86 for a good ten years. Mind you, ladies and gentlemen who have proven with the Supra, but more recently with the GR Yaris, that they know very well how to make great little sports cars. And “spoiler alert”: they’ve done it again here. Once again in collaboration with Subaru, at roughly the same weight, the driving pleasure machine we’ve all been waiting for so long has been created.
The two-seater sports coupe based on Toyota’s new global architecture retains the rear-wheel drive, six-speed manual transmission and the classic naturally aspirated engine. The displacement of the four-cylinder boxer engine, which again came from Subaru and was slightly modified by Toyota, increased by 0.4 liters from 2.0 to 2.4 liters, and the maximum output increased from 147 kW / 200 hp to 172 kW / 234 hp. The maximum torque rises from 205 Nm to 250 Nm. The special feature here is that this is already there from 3700 rpm and delivers significantly more torque. At first glance, the values don’t look particularly impressive, but if you take the weight into account, the GR86 weighs at least 1,264 kg, depending on the equipment, and you get a very good power-to-weight ratio. For comparison: the large battery in a modern electric car alone weighs 600 kilograms – the car as a whole can weigh up to 2.6 tons.
Weight distribution is nearly perfect at 53 percent at the front and 47 percent at the rear, and a Torsen differential is installed on the rear axle. 0 – 100 km/h takes 6.3 seconds, more than a second faster than the GT86 in 7.6 seconds, and the top speed is 226 km/h. Alternatively, the GR86 also comes with a 6-speed automatic, but that’s lower than the manual shifter in terms of acceleration (6.9 seconds from 0-100 km/h) and top speed (216 km/h) and according to Toyota, it will likely be a maximum of 20 percent of cars sold. According to the #safethemanual tagline, the majority of customers are happy with the phone version.
And how does the GR86 drive now? In normal road traffic you can swim along comfortably in the low speed range and upon acceleration you will notice huge differences in power development compared to the predecessor, how well we were able to experience it at Circuito Monteblanco, the motor racing track in La Palma del Condado.
No more drop in performance from 3500 rpm, the ultra-accurate steering in relation to the extremely low vehicle weight leaves a big smile on your face. The material combination of high-strength steel and aluminum increases torsional rigidity by 50 percent compared to the GT86. Track mode can be activated by pressing a button, which slightly resets the ESP and changes the throttle characteristics, thanks to the rear-wheel drive, and drifting is also not a problem. With a speed range that changes only to the red range of 7500 rpm, the sound is also pleasing.
The interior is clearly laid out, there are buttons, switches or rotary controls for the most important functions, and the infotainment system is displayed on an 8-inch touch-sensitive screen. The user interface is simple but very intuitive.
Unnecessary bells and whistles for this car class were left straight by Toyota. There is no automatic start and stop and no lane departure warning system, so it offers a few simple steps to deactivate it when the vehicle is started. There is also no navigation system, but a mobile phone can be connected to the system via Android Auto or Apple CarPlay and used as a navigation system. Despite the good overview, there is a decent reverse camera and the audio system works well too.
The seats are made from a mixture of Alcantara and leather, provide great lateral support and are manually adjustable, while the rest of the interior is all plastic. There is a back seat in the 2+2 seats, but it’s somewhat unhelpful for adults. After all, there are two types of Isofix child seats. The best way to use the rear seat is to fold it horizontally, thus increasing the luggage compartment volume from 226 liters to a week’s shopping volume – that is, suitable for everyday use.
Two points carry a somewhat negative weight, a specific WLTP consumption of 8.7 – 8.8 l/100 km and CO2 emissions of 200 g/km, but because Toyota is a leader in CO2 savings with its hybrid models, the limited GR86 production doesn’t hurt the footprint The carbon footprint of the fleet, to the delight of fans of spirited sports cars.
The GR86 costs in Germany in the Pure equipment from 33,990 euros, in Austria at least 38,490 euros is due. If you still want a copy, you should hurry, the unit for the build year 2022 has already been completely sold out for Europe. It will be in production for another two years, so you still have a chance to visit your local dealer until 2024.
Toyota GR86 specifications:
– Length / width / height: 4265/1775/1310 meters
Engine: 4-cylinder petrol engine
Displacement: 2387 cc
Power: 172 kW / 234 hp at 7000 rpm
Maximum torque: 250 Nm at 3700 rpm
Transmission: Six-speed manual
– Acceleration: from 0 to 100 km/h in 6.3 seconds (automatic 6.9 seconds)
– Top speed: 226 km/h (automatic 216 km/h)
– WLTP fuel consumption: 8.7 – 8.8 l / 100 km
– CO2 emissions: 198-200 g/km