• Delectable dynamics; brilliant steering; great driving position; surprisingly comfortable ride; well specced and free servicing for three years;
  • Limited availability; Toyota 86 can be bought for less; narrow boot; interior could feel more special

9 / 10

Subaru BRZ Review
Subaru BRZ Review
Subaru BRZ Review
by Jez Spinks

Subaru became famous globally for going sideways with its all-wheel-drive World Rallying Championship cars, but the Subaru BRZ aims to excite driving enthusiasts by drifting with just one pair of wheels.

If you haven’t heard yet about the Subaru BRZ – or its near-identical twin, the Toyota 86 – it’s probably time for you to slip out from beneath your rock dwelling.

The two rear-wheel-drive sports cars are a collaborative effort between the two Japanese brands – a natural alliance considering Toyota owns 17 per cent of Subaru’s parent company Fuji Heavy Industries.

It’s fair to say that one probably could not have lived without the other.

Toyota’s production plants are already full to capacity building its vast number of volume-selling models as the company bids to reclaim its position as the world’s largest car maker, and there isn’t room for a niche sports car.

Subaru would have struggled to finance the project for its own low-volume model.

Its existence in Australia was still not guaranteed, however, as Subaru Australia had to make an exception to a 15-year-old strategy of selling all-wheel-drive vehicles only.

Subaru Australia has retained its ‘All 4 the driver’ tagline even for the BRZ, however – not so much because ‘All 2 the driver’ doesn’t quite have the same ring to it but more that it still applies in a more literal sense.

Subaru BRZ Review
Subaru BRZ Review
Subaru BRZ Review
Subaru BRZ Review

And, just like its Toyota blood brother, the Subaru BRZ is a great driver’s car.

Head for a twisting section of bitumen and the BRZ displays a terrific rear-drive balance – sitting beautifully composed on its outer-rear wheel as you turn into corners.

The ground-hugging stance and a low centre of gravity – the latter aided by the lowest placement yet of a ‘Boxer’ engine in a Subaru – helps the cause.

There can be a hint of understeer initially in damper conditions, but the BRZ’s chassis adjusts to even the most subtle of lifts off the throttle.

Moist road surfaces are also best for sensing some slip angle from the rear end as the 17-inch tyres – despite being the same as those fitted to a Toyota Prius i-Tech – provide decent grip.

Even with stability control reduced or switched off entirely (via separate console buttons), the engine’s fairly modest torque of 205Nm, which also doesn’t kick in until 6600rpm, means power oversteer is not exactly on demand.

We can imagine aftermarket specialists being kept busy, but the BRZ’s four-cylinder is still enjoyable.

It can sound a bit flat at lower revs, but push beyond 3000rpm and that trademark throb of the Boxer engine becomes increasingly evident – and another good excuse to work it hard.

Subaru BRZ Review
Subaru BRZ Review
Subaru BRZ Review
Subaru BRZ Review

The linear nature of the naturally aspirated engine and the corresponding throttle response is also highly likeable.

Our test car was equipped with a six-speed automatic that, based on our experience of the Toyota 86 manual, is slower to rev towards the 7500rpm redline that brings greater performance rewards.

Not coincidentally, the auto BRZ is also slower from standstill to 100km/h compared with the six-speed manual – 8.2sec v 7.6.

Even with the latter transmission, though, the BRZ is not a staggeringly fast car. But it is satisfyingly quick.

And much like the entry-level Porsche Cayman against which the Subaru BRZ was benchmarked, the greater satisfaction comes from that brilliant handling.

The progressive brakes are great but the steering is my highlight. You never get bored seeing how quickly the (super-stiff) front end reacts with immediacy to the slightest movement of the steering wheel.

It also imparts reams of information from the road surface to the hands on the steering wheel without being corrupted by bumps.

It’s the kind of steering that is so pure that it’s appreciated at all times and at all speeds.

Subaru BRZ Review

And yet while there’s a firmness to the suspension – a slightly stiffer set-up to the 86 – that complements the body’s high rigidity, the ride is remarkable compliant – and superior to that provided by another compact coupe, the Audi TT.

The driving position is also classic sports car – low. Vision all round is still excellent, though.

The front seats – the optional, $1500 leather/Alcantara in our test car – are comfortably snug.

The rear seats, in contrast, are uncomfortably snug. Adults can just about squeeze in if the driver and front passenger are either short or extremely generous.

At least they offer the option, though, and the single-piece seatback folds completely flat to expand the cargo area.

That’s useful because the boot is small and very narrow – and further squeezed by the full-size spare wheel (which was exposed in our test car but covered in an 86 we had).

The interior of the Subaru BRZ is best described as purposeful. (And just like the Cayman, the rev counter takes priority in the centre of the instrument panel – though a handy digital speedo is integrated.)

While not bereft of touchy-feely materials and there’s little wrong with the buttons and dials, hard plastics are in the majority and the overriding sense is that the interior wasn’t one of the highest priorities for the project budget.

It’s important to put this all into the context of the price, though.

The Subaru BRZ can be driven away from a dealership – though not until you’ve purchased it online only (see our separate story) – for $37,150, or $39,780 if you opt for the auto gearbox.

That is a higher starting point than the 86 but the BRZ’s single specification effectively sits between the two (GT and GTS) offered with the Toyota.

So while it doesn’t come with the GTS’s colour touchscreen sat-nav system or premium heated sports seats, it does get auto on/off bi-xenon headlights, alloy pedals, dual-zone air-conditioning, cruise control, CD audio and Bluetooth, leather-wrapped and stitched steering wheel, handbrake and gearshift lever, sports seats, 17-inch alloy wheels, foglights and daytime running lights, trip computer, electric windows, engine start/stop button, limited-slip rear differential.

Safety is aided by seven airbags, electronic stability control and a maximum (five star) ANCAP crash rating.

Services for the Subaru BRZ are also free for three years or up to 60,000km.

The BRZ’s price also makes it more affordable than that other certain sporty Subaru that has three capital letters in its name. Availability will be particularly limited in 2012, however, with only about 200 BRZs coming to Australia, and about a quarter of those are going to dealers as demonstrator models (with Subaru selling the BRZ exclusively online).

There’s certainly no reason why the Subaru BRZ – standing for Boxer Rear-wheel-drive Zenith – can’t become as much of a cult car as the WRX.

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Subaru BRZ Review
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  • mrxandthexfactor

    Buying the 86 or BRZ is a matter of preference. But the GTS 86 does offer a bit more ‘luxuries’. And the Toyota has D4-S

    • srieps

       The BRZ has D4-S as well.

      • mrxandthexfactor

        Granted. I was a bit doubtful but now that you’ve told me, I’m sure. Thanks

    • David

      This, and the Toyota, are nice cars indeed BUT they need a bit more oomph.

  • Waggaclint

    Personally id go with the BRZ because you can get in WRC-inspired Blue Mica paintwork, but otherwise flip a coin as the 86 is basically than same…

  • 86ubaru fan

    For people that we’re going to get a GT but wanted HID,Digital speed readout. this is a good compromise! The free servicing first 3 years or 60k this already is winning strategy. I would pay that bit more for this over a base GT.

  • F1

    7.6sec is very good for a 2.0L engine…

    But this car isn’t really about straight line performance

    • Edward

      Not really. My type-R from the UK is also a naturally aspirated 2.0L, but with a stated time of 6.7 secs. The japanese version is even more hardcore.

      Theres definately room to grow in the power department, but yes i agree that straight line speed isnt that important. I personally have the most fun in corners

      • madmac

        I used to have a Civic TypeR too and loved it so I am familiar with the handling and the vtec effect. I drove the BRZ on the weekend. It doesn’t kick in the high end like vtec but has more torque down low and is more progressive. It still revs high but not quite 8000rpm and the 0-100kph time also goes down to the driver and the tyres that you have. Remember this is also a lighter car than the TypeR. On both stock cars, sadly the BRZ will leave the TypeR in the corners. I do agree that there is still a lot of room to get more out of that engine.

  • Sakdjfhlajdhfladfladf

    Can’t wait for the STi model!! 

  • John

    i hope they make a RWD 4 door sports saloon of this platform, for the family person, then they will have the market covered.

    • Phunken

      still gonna be tight and compromised… i think this unique platform is totally focus on low compact coupe form, they even hinted that a convertable would be too much of a compromise.

  • Tuzii

    still a slow car.

    • Sakdjfhlajdhfladfladf

      Take it around a Touge in Japan, and it’ll keep up or even be faster than cars that are faster than it on a straight. 

      • WinDz

        Do we live in Japan ? Are there any Touge road in australia ? Pointless… It’s not  like people will corner around the street in 100km/h ….

        • Sakdjfhlajdhfladfladf

          I don’t care if we live in Japan or not, I’m just proving a point that it’s not slow. 

        • Sakdjfhlajdhfladfladf

          Oh and if you really want to prove whether it’s fast or not, take it to a Touge styled track … and then you can corner at 100km/h. You can’t prove much on the roads

          • Sumpguard

              Well you can but expect to pay for it! You’re right Schn. It isn’t all about straight line speed and given the choice I’d take the car that is more likely to save my life if I misjudge a corner.

                Handling ability is a no brainer and the car has enough performance. They have obviously also left the door open for incremental upgrades oer the life of the car and I’m taking bets early that this car will be around for many years to come!

               The aftermarket tuners are already hearing the sound of tills opening.

          • kazuo

            so u mean there is so much road in Australia that allows u to drive a much faster car? 

          • WinDz

            Why dont you ask yourself which one is easier ? 

             A) Accelerate fast in the straight line to 100-120km/h and then slow down to legal speed (which you can achieve this in 5 secs in a normal fast car i.e EVO, STI, GTI)


             B) Cornering in a 50km/h zone at 120km/h ??

            I think it’s pretty logical to say cornering at 120km/h in 50km/h zone is impossible and Stupid..

            And 99% of the time, you won’t noticed the different between a SUPER FAST handling car with just a normal descent car in day 2 day cornering.

            I DARE to say normal Mazda 3 or even suzuki swift sport can handle our road as quick and as fun as you can have in FT86/BRZ in a safe manner (of course I’m not comparing them when they are cornering in 140-160km/hour)…. But again who does that in our road, unless you want to die

          • Alex

            So your point is that you cannot prove if this car is fast or not on the road. That is where I believe most people will spend 99 – 100% of their time. If you cannot tell if it is fast there what is the point. Unless you don’t want to go fast.

          • WinDz

            My point is…. Cornering and handling speed is irrelevant 99% of the time in our normal road.

            Straight line speed (even though is not legal to go above the speed limit), but you can easily push it to 140-150 very quickly and slow down to the legal speed again.

            And plus, having more torque is more pleasant to cruise in our big high way where there’s lots of uphill and downhill. 

      • Gus

        you watch too much initial d. 20 year old silvias and rx7s kill this thing. its too underpowered to trade in for. I have an sr20det s13 and am looking to get a new car. I took the gts 86 for a test drive and it was not even on the same playing field in any aspect of performance

        • matt

          lol find me a 20 year old silvia or 10 year old 200sx that hasn’t been turned into a 500hp uninsurable mess. no doubt the 86 had no go to your s13.. just conveniently forget that they had around 200hp stock from the factory too 😉

          • Gus

            mine only has mild mods and 3rd party insured. an FMIC, 3″ turbo back and a piggyback ecu. able to get high 13’s at kwinana motorplex. stock the redtop s13 was only 206hp but it has 100 more lb-ft torque than the brz. useable power and torque also comes in mid revs unlike the brz which you have to absolutely wring its neck which I did, and was not cool, not something you want to do to a car you’ve just forked out 40k for

          • Ford Fairlane

            i can’t see why thay just don’t make a 2.5 liter version as well as the 2.0.
            Say 165kw and 245nm of torque at slighty lower revs,it would still keep its linear revability and offer more useable bottom end torque.

          • Housecat84

            So go buy the Toyota equiv for a much lower price and when you’re ready, drop a turbo kit in it. 
            Not everyone wants a 20 year old import. They lose out on things like a 5 star ANCAP rating and other nice safety features. There is nothing out there in the market now like this for the price. Remind me how much S13’s and RX7’s were from new 20 years ago? Why are you even comparing when there is virtually nothing “brand new” that will have the weight/RWD/power combo, you’re looking for.. assuming thats what you want. 

        • Sakdjfhlajdhfladfladf

          I haven’t seen Initial D in a long time, never learnt the word Touge from Initial D anyway. I’m just purely pointing at the focus of this car and it was made to be ‘fun to drive’ to be a car with superb handling. 

          • WinDz

            Fun to drive – 100% Agree
            Superb Handling – Rubbish…. It won’t even exit the corner faster then most of its competitor. It does not have good tyre, brake, or enough torque to exit the corner fast enough then most of its competitor. This is the reason why its so slow around the track

          • Edward

            I find it odd that when you talk about handling, you mainly mention speed.

            We all know many fast cars that handle like rubbish, and many slow cars that handle great. To say the BRZ is slow AND handles like rubbish is a big claim.

        • Gibbut

          some people prefer reliabilty to all out performance. ive owned turbo heaps of junk before and ill NEVER own another turbo car.

          try a sr20de s13 (non turbo)  siliva against a brz. compare apples with apples.

          these toyotas and subies are designed to be modded, wait till a turbo kit is available.

          then see how the HEKTIK lads like their nismo stickers.

          • Gus

            people in my car club are getting 15 second 1/4miles with their sr20de silvias. Apples with apples: turbo silvias and brzs are about the same driveaway upon release, the comparison is rwd performance for the price. The original 86 was a rwd mazda 3 equivelant in terms of price which made it so damn good. this thing is sports car money, but without sports car performance, thats all im saying its hard for me to justify trading in my sil for this, waiting on the genisis coupe to see how that is

          • bobdevo

            BRZ 1/4 mile time is 14.9 @ 95 and 0-60 in 6.3 with a competent driver, faster than a Dino Ferrari or a Porsche 944s.

          • Amlohac

            Ferarri dino and the 944 were pigs of cars.

          • Igomi Watabi

            spoken with true revisionist ignorance, Amlohac.

          • Phunken

            Ummm the Genesis is a V8 RWD coupe (i believe its heavier), which isn’t really comparable with the 86/BRZ. 

        • Johno

          I test drove one as well and definately not that impressed with it, does not live up to all the hype.

      • Richard

        MOTOR Mag has the 86 at Wakefield Park Track. It was 4 secs a lap slower than a Scirocco R, slower than a Clio RS and WRX and a tiny 0.7 sec faster around the track than the 7 yr old MX5.  Even a family hack Commodore SV6 was less than 1 sec slower around the tight Wakefield track.  It proves its not quite as fast as you expect.

        • WinDz

          exactly! ITs all the Marketing that hyped that this car…. !

          • madmac

            If what you are after is straight line speed, push you back in the seat torque or massive power, then this car is not for you and it appears that Richard and WinDz fall into that category and there is nothing wrong with that. It really depends on what you are looking for in a car that will decide if you will like this car or not. Some ppl prefer grunt and torque. Some actually do not mind not getting much grunt as long as the car is fun to throw around corners and it doesnt necessarily have to be 100kph round a bend. Even going around a corner 5kph more than you normally would changes the car behaviour and this car can cope with that, some gruntier cars might not. 

    • bobdevo

       So how  often do you drive faster than 145 mph?

  • Guest_pest

    Still  hopelessly under-powered for a sports car.
    The 7.6 sec 0-100 looks ok on paper but you gotta thrash the engine to get those kind of figures.
    A measly 205 nm @ a whopping 6600 rpm is a sick joke.Can’t believe it got 4.5 stars.

    • John

      Can’t believe it got 4.5 stars, yeh i can’t believe it either, should’ve been 5

    • F1

      Better then what you drive..

    • F1

      Hahhaaaaa Pest your an idiot..

      You have to thrash (WOT) every car to achieve its best times!

      What a stupid statement from a stupid person

      • Guest_pest

        Every car?
        ever heard of common rail, direct injection diesels fanboy ?Who’s the stupid one now?

        • RSC200

          Well that’s the difference from a true driver and a wannabe, a true driver will never back off on a corner and a wannabe will always slowdown in the corners.
          Have you seen the Clio RS 200 beat the Commodore SV6? Just check the Motor Magazine and find out your hero 0-100 cars be out cornered  by the Clio RS 200 and 86/BRZ, yes the ones with 147kw and 205 / 215(Clio) of torque. By the way the Clio Rs 200 was quicker that the Toyota 86 by 1.5 seconds and slower than the Subaru WRX by only 3ms, the hero Crappadore was left behind by a far distance.
          So bring on the lazy and boring common rail any day to a local track a watch it be Humiliated by the underpowered Clio RS 200 and Toyota/Subaru 86/BRZ.

          Engineering Perfection and Driver Involvement is not for everyone to understand, unfortunately…

          • F1MotoGP

             Sachsenring lap times:
            Renault Clio Sport 1m 49.69sec
            Seat Leon FR TDI 1m 49.39sec

            Autozeitung test track:
            Renault Clio Sport 1m 48.80sec
            VW Golf GTD 1m 47.40sec

          • Info

            …Maybe a SS Commodore would be better, at least you can take some people with you when you go for a drive.

      • WinDz

        Trash every car to achieve the best time ???? Have you heard or even seen the Evo, WRX STI, Skyline, Golf GTI, Renault Megane RS, Golf R, Scirocco R… lol!

        These cars can be in 1 gear ahead and still pull this FT86 in a rolling acceleration. LOL

        • Bbxh

          How do you know? Have you driven this?

          Have you raced it against GTI golf..

          7 seconds Is very good, the manual one would easily do 0-100 in late 6’s..

          One thing for sure it handles much better then the competition.. And feels better to drive as a result..

          Not to mention that it’s a Toyota, so it’s also reliable..

    • F1MotoGP

       I agree with you. Just checked on the Subaru website and the power and Nm graph tells another story too. After about 3000 rpm the torque drops till 4000 rpm than rise again. Power is nearly same. Up to 3000 rpm power rise sharp than hardly goes up than from 4000 rpm sharp again. I could not buy it online. I need to drive it how it feel around 3-4000 rpm.

    • Edward

      Unfortunately this argument isnt new, thanks to all the high revving Type-R’s we’ve had for the last decade. Ive had one for 5 years now and i never get tired of revving its nuts off to get power.

      People say revving is too much work, but people like me say low-down grunt is too lazy.

      Different engines for different people it would seem.

  • Jamie

    With the weak engine that needs to be thrashed to feel sporty, this is a toy for kids & immature hoons. 
    This is a disaster waiting to happen. Immature drivers + a car that needs thrashing to perform spells danger for our roads.

    • RoFlmaTiC

      Immature drivers with cars with powerful engines aren’t more of a danger?

      What a stupid comment.

      • JooberJCW

         I agree, stupid comment, a hoon is a hoon, there are more accidents of stupidity from fools with cars not built for speed and handling,

        • PaulM

          Apparently all the motoring journalists have got it wrong. According to them, the 86/BRZ communicates very well that the cars limits are being approached and is extremely controllable at the limit. Compare this to a WRX that reaches warp speed at 7/10 with the first warning given that it’s limits have been reached is when it wraps itself around a telegraph pole.
          Just because an engine does it’s best work at high rpm doesn’t necessarily spell disaster, especially when compared to point and shoot weapons such WRX’s and V8 Falcodores.

    • Norm

      Ok I’ll bite….in what kind of car is an immature hoon NOT a disaster waiting to happen?

      • John

        car rot…..bitten

    • Igomi Watabi

      The issue with immature drivers is well illustrated on here, where they’re all getting stuck into what all the experienced motoring journalists are calling one of the great driver’s cars for being underpowered. One would hope that anyone with maturity will see the beauty of sublime handling over straight-line performance and buy this car, and the ill-informed will stick to their timebomb, ageing drifting cars.

    • Edward

      Hoons arent children that treat the roads like a playground. A lot of the time they just dont know better. 

      For example, everyday on my way home i have to stare at a tree decorated with flowers because someone didnt know about understeer and their vehicle’s limits. I know that in my car i could do no more than 70kph on that same corner before understeering, and less in the damp. Everytime i see that tree i cant help but think of how that knowledge could have saved that person’s life. 

      I think the type of person buying this car isnt going to be the immature hoon. I think they would know a thing or two about driving and they dont care that much for power. For 30k you can buy something much more powerful especially in the 2nd hand market.


    good car and all no denying that. but it’s still slow. why couldn’t they crank in a few more kw’s and Nm’s? It desperately needs a bit more punch even if it’s not meant to be a fuel guzzling HP monster. Just a bit more punch would make it so much funner since we aren’t going to be redlining it around every corner we see. 

    I’m no engineer but would fuel economy really have suffered that bad if it was a bit more powerful? 

    and speaking of fuel economy, why the hell would people worry that much about fuel economy on a car that’s supposedly meant to be a raw sports car? seems the camry mentality has somehow found its way to the 86/brz

    I was so excited about this whole thing since the first day rumours came out years ago. But after driving it (86) it felt like waiting for grass to grow

    I was hoping we could finally go back into the days of affordable and crazy fun jap cars of the 90s. But it’s not quite in that class

    actually it sort of reminds me of what the rx8 was to the rx7

    then again there is the aftermarket…just a shame its not out of the box and you have to void warranty

    STI version PLEASE

    • F1

      Those fun 90’s jap cars were fuel guzzlers..

      There was nothing stopping Toyota from giving this more power, but it would of consumed more fuel and since political correctness holds reign thee days, they did what they did..

      Plus 200HP is not what I would call underpowered.

    • Gibbut

      this thing is designed to be modded.

      the aftermarket in japan is a lot bigger than it is here

      • Phunken

        I believe same as the USA, they have already handed the spec to the top tuner houses month before release and they have already come up with packs for the 86 in advanced, just not here yet, even Toyota admit its not their game to do mod, thats the tuners job.

    • Edward

      Im actually glad it doesnt have more. Affordable and powerful cars and the ones the police target, and they do have a valid reason for doing so.

      I could see myself owning one of these in the future but i wouldnt want to be lumped into that kind of crowd for having one. A friend of mine that just bought a WRX is already enjoying the prejudice

  • Chris-wright

    I am a long term Subaru customer but completely disagree with Subaru’s deliberate restriction on the supply of these vehicles . I have just cancelled my order and today traded my WRX for BMW 135 . 6 weeks delivery and available in any colour

    • Sumpguard

         Yeah but it’s a BMW. Ewwww!

    • Igomi Watabi

      why wouldn’t you cancel your order and order a Toyota 86 instead? badge?

      • WinDz

        Because bmw 135i will eat the 86/BRZ in every single way!

        it’s not even a comparison!

        • Sumpguard

            The 135i is about as ugly as cars get. it’s ok for those that can live with the aweful styling but I couldn’t! So no, it doesn’t eat the 86/BRZ in every way. BMW don’t go anywhere near toyota for realiability either so that’s two areas it lags in straight up.

             ….and then there’s the ridiculous price !!

        • Igomi Watabi

          Of course it’s not, which is why I don’t understand cancelling the BRZ order and forking out the premium for the (I agree, better in many ways, except for handling, steering finesse, subtlety, styling….. read the reviews) BMW. If the waiting list was the only reason to cancel at BRZ order, wouldn’t you look for ostensibly the same car from a different source. Or, as I say, is it just badge snobbery?

  • Gaz

    Renault Clio RS200 Cup Trophy is faster. Almost 2 seconds quicker around Wakefield Park as tested by Motor Mag. Gus is right about Silvia though and the lack of modern jdm style cars. That’s what we were hoping for and this car is a disappointment. Let’s not get marketed by Mr Toyota with all this crap about how the the car has enough space for 4 tyres and a helmet, it’s soft and when you compare to other cars it’s not necessarily good value. I was a fan boy but after seeing up close and test drive I pulled out and purchased Renaultsport. You can really see why it’s cheaper (crap tyres, crap brakes, crap wheels and scratch easy interior plastic). Sure the dash design and driver layout is better but that’s were it ends. And if you aren’t into the hardcore feel it’s not even better then Golf Gti. Sorry boys but it’s not good to replace our s15’s. Ironically my Renault feels more jdm.

  • Gibbut

    ive never seen a wheels magazine article about where a standard nissan silvia non turbo has beaten a porsche cayman around a track.

  • hh

    Don’t like the speedo, even when you are doing 100km/hr its going to look wrong given the where the numbers are located

    • bobdevo

       You’re supposed to be looking at the tach.

      • Johno

        I have driven this car and was not that impressed, a bit of a let down.
        Has any one driven one or owns one that can give us their view.

        • bobdevo

           then don’t buy one

  • john

    Is this car underpowered for a performance car? Absolutely. Does it matter? No. Every review I have read on international and local websites have the same conclusion. Fabulous handling, balance, steering but they lack power. Toyota/Subaru got it right. It is the same philosophy that porsche/BMW follows. Get the basics of the car right (ala base boxster/cayman, 3 series/5 series) and then you have a good platform from which to build future hero models. IMO this is just the beginning!

    • Edward

      Glad someone here can see this!

  • Whybother

    All you guys are getting hardons for this and the 86. You still 98ron petrol to run it daily, factor that in and it REALLY doesn’t look like a good buy.. at all.

    • Phunken

      I suggest a Corolla, return decent fuel econ and more practical…

    • Edward

      Most car enthusiasts with a new sports car will put 98 anyway. Performance orientated engines benefit much more from 98. They did a test on Fifth Gear about this. 

      For 5 years i have only put in 98 in mine and it only needs 95.

  • gt86.com.au

    It is an amazing car. Drive it! and you will be convereted immediately :)
    if you want more power, learn how to drive on a race track first. by the time you do that, a turbo or supercharger kit will be alwailable for you to bolt on.

    • Smart US

       from ppl that driven it are coming quite opposite impressions… however substance over essence…

      • Gus

        the reviewers are able to take this thing on the track and push it to its envelope in all aspects of driving. you cant do that when you take these things for a test drive down up and down a public road, and there is not enough power for it to be fun on these short runs. either the dealers need to do a ‘test track day’ for these things or let you take it to a tight winding country road otherwise you will just be underwhelmed by the hype

    • Turbodewd

      oh yeah, bolt on turbo and void your warranty…niiice…its a car for the track, totally impractical around town.

    • Edward

      Yeah i would also feel much more comfortable learning about the car first before slapping on more power. I would hate to look like Jeremy Clarkson spinning out

  • Jaycee99

    This is a test only

  • Turbodewd

    BRZ 0-100 slower than the 4 cylinder Falcon?!  This car is a toy for boys.  Toast at the lights vs anyone really LOL.

    • Weewaa

      Another idiot whose only measure of a car is 0-100.  Obviously a Commodore driver.

      • WinDz

        What do you measure your car then ? *WOW I can Corner in that 90 degrees bend around my street in 140km/hour * 
        LOL who is the idiot ?

      • Turbodewd

        Weewaa, if a Hyundai toasts you at the lights then youre not driving a sportscar.

        • Weewaa

          That does’t even make sense!

    • Edward

      Anyone toasting people at the lights is a bit of a boy anyway.

      This might sound unheard of, but i respect the guy that can toast you but chooses not to.

  • Save It For The Track

    Seems that the ‘low resistance tyres’ are adding to the sideways potential of this and the 86. All the talk about fun and ‘sideways action’ is assuming that all owners will take them to the track. As has been evident in a couple of different aus car mags so far, even on a track it is not the quickest thing around against various competition. What i have garnered from these stories and others is that the 86/BRZ will indeed be a ‘fun’ car to drive on a track, but there are quite a few others; Megane RS250, Clio RS200, VW scirrocco, and even the Golf Gti which are not only faster around a given track but will be more useable and indeed faster point A to point B in the real world and more useable day to day. Doubtless given the promotion and writing of these as ‘vehicles to get sideways’ more than one is going to end up around a pole and/or into a tree, as some driver tries ‘getting it sideways’ on a twisty stretch of road, hopefully they don’t kill or seriously injure anyone when it all goes pear shaped.

  • Mr.T

    My brother in law owns an SS Sportswagon and doesn’t mind me utilising the the throttle to the max when I’m behind the wheel and yeah it’s good fun but then I hop into my 22 year old MX5  and enjoy the drive home. That’s right, I drive it. Point and shoot is fun for a bit but it doesn’t require any skill. The journos can’t be all wrong. Can’t wait to buy a BRZ/86. Actually I recently drove one of those RS Renault things. The first corner reminded me of what is wrong with front wheel drive.

  • Save It For The Track

    If you are saying the journos can’t be all wrong, then what is your comment about the RS Renault things and front wheel drive about then???  Which ‘RS Renault’ did you allegedly drive? I know that a Clio RS or a Megane RS will leave an SS for dead in a decent set of corners.

  • Juice08

    Who commenting here has actually driven the car? I haven’t but don’t think ‘on-paper’ numbers mean all that much. Driving is a tactile and emotional thing. What does it matter how fast you can get 0-100kn/h if the speed limit is 60? If you’re dragging someone illegally then you’re an idiot. Take it to the track and if there’s some twisty stuff straight-line speed doesn’t equal winning or fun. Looks is a subjective thing. If someone loves driving their Cherry J1 to the limit and thinks it’s a damn good sports car then great!

    To anyone with an 86 or BRZ congrats! I think you’re gonna have a lot of fun. And if not stick it on the used market and cash in on those desperate to get in one.

    • Perky

      agreed, however, if i had one, i would not be taking it to the track as it voids all insurance you have on the car.

    • PaulM

      All these comments regarding 0-100, 1/4 miles and lap times remind me of when I was 13 and started reading Wheels & (Modern) Motor magazines. Whenever there was a comparison, I used to turn to the last page of the story to see the acceleration times and judge the fastest car the winner, disregarding whatever the fine motoring journalists had written in the preceding pages.
      Now 15 years later, I read the entire story and am shocked to find that the fastest car is not always the best.
      I admit I have ordered an 86 and have joined a long waiting list. I fell in love with the car on the test drive. I know I won’t win too many traffic light drag races, but guess what, I don’t need to boost my ego through street racing. If I wanted a faster car I could have always bought a WRX, Megane RS or a Scirocco, but none of them appealed to me. I wanted a small, light, 2 door, RWD car that was around the 30-40k bracket. I wasn’t interested in winning any races or trying to impress anyone, all I wanted was something that could suit me day to day, but also could be driven on some twisty country roads on weekends.
      It seems like I am not the only person out there who feels that way because both the 86 & BRZ are sold out for the foreseeable future. To all the people who don’t want one, don’t buy one. Find something else you can impress your mates with when you quote it’s acceleration times. You really don’t have any shortage of options.

  • Redfox

    I drive a Mazda 3 SP23, a nice sedan that is just a little bit sporty. I’m not ready nor willing to jump right into a full blown sports car like a 370Z, nor do I have the money to pony up for such an extravagance. The BRZ, and its twin the 86 is a perfect package for me.

    The car is only underpowered because the absolute value HP/kW has been drilled into us as being supremely important. For many reasons I value a car with precise and instant steering over something with significant horsepower. And here’s why: I’ll be driving on the freeway at 100 km/hr like most days, and suddenly I’ll come across a piece of debris laying on the ground. I need to swerve out of the way and this is where the body roll of the SP23 makes such precise movements more laboured.

    I don’t often do much country driving so I rarely need to overtake road trains and what not. I don’t see the point of having such powerful acceleration in my position. But in my daily driving, which is what I’d be doing with this car, better handling (and good brakes) is important. 

    The car is the whole package for me. And yes, I have test driven one but my financial situation means I’ll be waiting for a second hand model next year or the year after.

  • Zzzzzzz

    It is difficult to drive any cars hard at a test drive while the salesperson sitting next to you. Even sport cars. So on this 86/BRZ are you able to rev it all the way to 5000rpm+ to feel the power and the fun at a test drive with the salesperson next to you. Test drove the new Boxster S on the weekend and cannot drive it hard (to its potential) with the sales next to me at all. So didn’t like it one bit.
    So you have to keep it above 5000+rpm to get its full torque (205Nm) hmmmmm….. then coming out from a corner, is that enough…..

  • Pojar22

    Anyone else notice the dash shots in the video are from the 86, and not the BRZ?

  • Marcuspetraska

    in time there will be more powerful versions – most likely turbocharged – then everyone will be happy. youll be able to buy this version with an automatic if you just to be seen in a nice looking sports car, or youll pickup the more powerful option with manual if you are really enthusiastic about youre driving

  • Pete

    People wanting more power have no idea what this car is about. I drove one the other day. Its not power it needs, but a shorter final drive in the rear diff (maybe some 4.11’s). This would give acceleration that bit of extra oomph. 200HP is plenty for a car this light. I don’t like how Toyota have removed the full size spare from their GTS version though. That was a dog act move on Toyota Australia’s behalf.

  • Sydlocal

    The Lexus sourced manual gearbox could be called a “fundamental mechanical piece”!

  • Grieves

    we got ours a couple weeks ago, not that great, we traded it back in. its just to impractical

Subaru Brz Specs

Car Details
Body Type
New Price
Private Sale
$27,390 - $31,130
Dealer Retail
$27,750 - $33,000
Dealer Trade
$21,300 - $24,900
Engine Specifications
Engine Type
Engine Size
Max. Torque
205Nm @  6600rpm
Max. Power
147kW @  7000rpm
Pwr:Wgt Ratio
Bore & Stroke
Compression Ratio
Valve Gear
Drivetrain Specifications
Drive Type
Final Drive Ratio
Fuel Specifications
Fuel Type
Fuel Tank Capacity
Fuel Consumption (Combined)
7.1L / 100km
Weight & Measurement
Kerb Weight
Gross Vehicle Weight
Not Provided
Ground Clearance
Towing Capacity
Brake:0  Unbrake:0
Steering & Suspension
Steering Type
Turning Circle
Front Rim Size
Rear Rim Size
Front Tyres
215/45 R17
Rear Tyres
215/45 R17
Wheel Base
Front Track
Rear Track
Front Brakes
Rear Brakes
Front Suspension
MacPherson strut, Coil Spring, Gas damper, Anti roll bar
Rear Suspension
Double wishbone, Coil Spring, Gas damper, Anti roll bar
Standard Features
Control & Handling
Traction Control System
Xenon Headlights
Optional Features
Leather Upholstery
Service Interval
9 months /  15,000 kms
36 months /  999,000 kms
VIN Plate Location
Centre Eng Bay Scuttle
Country of Origin