The redesign of the Subaru BRZ and Toyota 86 doppelganger has been a hot story for months now. But now, the coveted Japanese sports car has been fully revealed with Subaru unveiling its model first at the Thermal Club Raceway in California. Like the previous generation, this one again will thrive on being a driver’s car with a focus on chassis and high levels of agility.
But what will everyone be wanting to know first? What engine the car’s using, of course. While it was rumoured that the engine may embrace forced induction, Subaru has stayed true to its cause and has fitted the new BRZ with a 2.4-litre naturally-aspirated Boxer engine. It produces 228 horsepower and 184 lb-ft of torque – a happy increase over the original’s 205 horsepower and 156 lb-ft. Thankfully, a manual gearbox is still available alongside an automatic ‘box with both sending power to the rear wheels, only this time, they have automatic throttle blipping on downshifts as a feature.
This new Boxer engine has been placed lower in the chassis meaning the car has a lower centre of gravity than ever before, reflecting in a more dynamic and agile chassis than its predecessor. With a “near-perfect weight distribution” and a short 101.4-inch wheelbase, this car will certainly continue the work the original started in the handling department. Plus, weighing only 1,315kg, Subaru boasts that it’s the “lightest rear-wheel-drive 2+2 production sports car sold in the US, although the Mazda MX-5 Miata is still lighter, weighing in at only 1,061kg.
There’s been quite an exterior overhaul, with the front of the car specifically looking far more intimidating than the last-gen thanks to more muscled wings and larger venting. There are also sharper lines that run down the side that integrate with side vents and form into the wider rear arches. Under these arches sit 17-inch wheels on the Premium trim, where the Limited trim gets 18-inch variants.
A lot of effort has gone into the car’s aerodynamics, with these side vents ducting air from the engine bay and wheel arches, reducing drag and adding to the sporty look of this new BRZ, while also guiding air over a side sill spoiler that increases downforce. There’s even a small flick behind the rear wheel arch that helps maintain stability at high speeds, a bubled roofline, and a ducktail spoiler that sits above a pair of angry-looking exhaust exits.
Ease yourself into its bucket seats that feature red stitching and you’ll find that the exterior has had an upgrade, too. It’s now much more driver-focussed, with a 7-inch digital dashboard sat behind the steering wheel allowing almost complete customisation of what data is being shown. It even has a track mode, which only shows the RPM of the engine on a linear graph – like a racing car!
In the centre of the dash sits an 8-inch Starlink infotainment system by Subaru, which offers a host of technology such as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto support, Bluetooth hands-free phone connectivity and audio streaming, a rearview camera, and SiriusXM satellite radio. Choose the automatic, and you’ll even be treated to Subaru’s Eyesight Driver Assist Technology. Not sure why you’d choose that, but the options there.
The 2022 BRZ should be coming to market in the Fall of 2021, and although pricing hasn’t yet been confirmed, we’re expecting it to be under $30,000.