The big T is the latest to get on the super-sleek two-door band wagon, with the unveiling today of a special new Toyota 86 Shooting Brake concept.
Developed right here in Australia with a mission to “explore the ways to expand its appeal while retaining the purity of the coupe”, the 86 Shooting Brake is a fully-functional and driveable vehicle.
Revealing the concept at this week’s Festival of 86 in Canberra, the concept was designed and modelled by Toyota Australia’s Product Design group, but the final concept was hand-built in Japan.
The project first came into being in late 2014, when Toyota 86 global chief engineer Tetsuya Tada visited Australia and was shown a one-quarter scale clay model of the Shooting Brake concept.
“I was totally surprised – and I liked it so much I arranged for my expert takumi prototype craftsmen to hand-build the Shooting Brake concept based on the Australian design,” Tada-san said.
Toyota Australia’s design chief, Nicolas Hogios, said the local team went through plenty of “enthusiastic” debate over the changes that had been proposed from across the group. Eventually it was decided to remodel just the roof and the rear quarter - and, of course, the 86 has been given an official makeover in the time since this project began.
“Like kids in a lolly shop, we thought about restyling more of the car; however, like a good parent saying ‘no’ to too many sweets, we made the conscious decision to keep as much of the original 86 as possible, only changing what was absolutely necessary.
Hogios says that the changes have helped to maintain a “sporty, taut and energetic” look, while introducing a more practical rear space and, for those carting around surfboards, bikes and storage pods, a more useful roof.
“As a result, we have expanded the appeal of the coupe while intentionally retaining the purity of the now-iconic 86 style,” he said.
Don’t expect the Shooting Brake to appear in showrooms, however. This is purely a design concept.
“While we never say never, and I would love this concept to become a production reality, it is very much a concept that demonstrates the passion within Toyota for cars that are fun to drive,” Tada-san said.
For more on the Toyota 86, catch our links below. You can also watch a video of the concept's unveiling at Facebook.com/CarAdvice
Click the Photos tab above for more images from today's event.
What do you think of the 86 Shooting Brake concept? Would you like to see it in showrooms?