- Plans finally firming for 86 replacement
- Rear-wheel-drive will continue
- Turbocharged Subaru engine the hot tip for powerplant
Despite a seeming eternity since the Toyota 86 and Subaru BRZ were launched upon the world in 2012, both brands are now ramping up development of a successor that would see the next-gen model receive turbocharged power to the tune of 190kW.
According to Autocar, Toyota and Subaru have committed to launching a second-generation successor next year that Toyota is expected to brand as the GR 86, dropping the GT86 and 86 names in favour of Toyota's new GR nomenclature that will be applied to the automaker's growing performance car line-up, which now includes the GR Supra and GR Yaris.
It’s also reported that the sports car duo will be based on a Toyota-derived platform rather than following in their predecessor's footsteps by utilising Subaru-sourced underpinnings.
There are no rear-wheel drive-suitable models available in the Subaru stable currently, so the move to a TNGA platform will ensure the new sports car’s dynamics come alive - though Subaru is expected to continue to supply the powerplant.
It’s understood that the car is likely to retain a boxer-style flat-four-cylinder engine but the 2.0-litre version we know will be swapped out for a larger capacity 2.4-litre turbocharged unit that’s currently used in Subaru’s range.
Subaru’s hulking US-market Ascent SUV ekes out just over 190kW from the engine - known as an FA24 - so we wouldn’t put it past Toyota/Subaru to nudge it up to 200kW when the engine is put into service in a performance car.
Forced induction is something 86 fans have been longing for and the pronounced torque hole of the current car's 2.0-litre naturally-aspirated flat-four is well documented, so the superior torque of a turbo alternative should be welcome.
Both Toyota and Subaru are expected to improve the tangible aspects of the 86/BRZ successor to approach a broader range of sports car buyers, too.
Where currently the car is focused on no-frills, no-nonsense, driving purity mixed with affordability, its replacement is expected to bring a lift in safety technology, materials and fit and finish that could see the car positioned slightly more upmarket than it is currently.
Of course, we’re not sure what that will do to the price point, but Toyota won’t want to tread on the toes of the rest of its GR-performance range which already includes the Supra (which already has a budget-oriented turbo four-cylinder in some markets) and GR Yaris.
Toyota's renewed focus on performance is starting to see the Japanese auto giant shed its 'cars as whitegoods' reputation, a stance driven by CEO Akio Toyoda who is a keen car enthusiast himself.
The recent push to market Toyota through its GR performance arm is largely attributed to Toyoda's desire to see his company recapture some of its past glory, and if it can add another feather to its cap in the form of a turbo-motivated GR 86, we imagine Akio would be a happy man.
EXPLORE: More Toyota 86 news and reviews
Is adding more power and performance to the next 86 a good move? Let us know below!