Subaru BRZ no one-generation wonder, says FHI boss

The Subaru BRZ will not just be a one-generation wonder, insists the boss of the Japanese car maker’s parent company.
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Fuji Heavy Industries president Yasuyuki Yoshinaga told Automotive News the brand would again collaborate with Toyota on a successor to its current rear-wheel-drive, two-door sports car, which is twinned with the Toyota 86.

Yoshinaga’s comments came on the back of an article by Fairfax, which quoted Toyota 86 chief engineer Tetsuya Tada saying it was not yet decided Subaru would remain involved in the development of its next-generation sports car.

“If I were to be told that, I’d pass out,” Yoshinaga told Automotive News. “It’s not going to be just one generation.”


The 86 and BRZ were co-developed by the two Japanese brands and are produced at Subaru’s Gunma plant at a ratio of eight to one in favour of the Toyota.

BRZ sales are outperforming that production ratio in some key markets, however. In the US, BRZ sales are up six per cent this year to 4295, while sales of the Scion FR-S (as the 86 is known in that market) have fallen 24 per cent to 7662.

In Australia, the Toyota has outsold its Subaru twin at a rate of roughly four to one in 2014, with the pair recording 2159 and 522 sales respectively to the end of June, the 86 down 38 per cent, the BRZ down 31 per cent.

Yoshinaga admitted that the BRZ wouldn’t be viable without Toyota’s volume, however.

Production of the 86/BRZ twins started in January 2012, meaning the next-generation models should reach production before the end of the decade.

Both Toyota and Subaru will launch mildly updated versions of the 86 and BRZ in Australia in the coming months that introduce subtle suspension, steering and interior tweaks.