Easy Breeze

Subaru re­turns to coupes in a col­lab­o­ra­tion with Toy­ota

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Car News -

Aus­tralia. The BRZ is a joint ven­ture with Toy­ota and, even though Subaru is re­spon­si­ble for the ba­sic chas­sis de­sign and the car’s hor­i­zon­tally op­posed four­cylin­der en­gine, the com­pany is still lag­ging more than six months be­hind its part­ner’s pre­view plan for a car ex­pected to be called the Toy­ota 86.

A pair of FT-86 con­cepts have been on the mo­tor show trail for more than 18 months, with a show­room-ready Se­ries II model un­veiled at the New York show back in April.

The BRZ STI looks much as ex­pected, with the same ba­sic body as the 86 and tweak­ing by STI to give it ex­tra punch— in­clud­ing a new twist on Subaru’s clas­sic World Rally Cham­pi­onship colour called Wr­blue Pearl II.

The STI work is con­cen­trated around the edges— with a deep front spoiler, rear wing, whee­larch flares, rear dif­fuser and twin ex­haust pipes— but there is a car­bon-fi­bre roof.

An Sti­wrx­al­ready has a car­bon roof in Ja­pan but there is no news on whether it will make it to pro­duc­tion. But the roof will cut weight and lower the car’s cen­tre of grav­ity, help­ing with what Subaru is al­ready claim­ing as ‘‘ pure han­dling de­light’’ in the BRZ.

Look­ing closer at the BRZ, the nose gets Subarudna in­clud­ing a hexag­o­nal grille, ‘‘ hawk-eye’’ head­lamps and fin-shaped fog lamps. Subaru says the car’s 2.0-litre flat four­cylin­der has di­rect fuel in­jec­tion, us­ing Toy­ota’s D-4S tech­nol­ogy for a high out­put and high en­vi­ron­men­tal stan­dards, although it gives no power or torque fig­ures.

But the en­gine is set a full 120mm lower and 240mm closer to the cen­tre of the chas­sis than other Subaru cars.

‘‘ As a re­sult, it achieves one of the low­est pos­si­ble cen­tres of grav­ity com­pared to other cars on the mar­ket,’’ Subaru says.

‘‘ By in­clud­ing light­weight parts such as the car­bon fi­bre roof, the over­all weight has been re­duced. The body struc­ture is both light­weight and highly rigid.’’

The other no­table in­clu­sions on the car are Brembo four­wheel disc brakes and STI light­weight 18-inch al­loy wheels with STI sports sus­pen­sion. When the BRZ hits the road it will be­come the first Subaru coupe since the flabby SVX of 1991. That car was in­tended as a grand tourer and had a six-cylin­der en­gine, as well as jet-fighter-style side glass with a small open­ing for the win­dows in the doors.

Pur­pose­ful: The mus­cu­lar looks of the Subaru BRZ

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