The joint venture between Subaru and Toyota to produce a low slung, two door, coupe has been a raging success in the form of the Toyota 86 and the Subaru BRZ. On Subaru’s side, with the car being the sole entry in an otherwise all wheel drive family, it’s been a standout. 2017 saw the single trim level car receive a mild refresh.The car itself remains largely untouched; there’s a sole powerplant choice, being Subaru’s own horizontally opposed four cylinder, and a choice of six speed manual or six speed auto. There’s slight differences between peak power and torque, depending on which transmission you choose, with either 152 kW or 147 kW and 212 Nm or 205 Nm available. It’s the torque figure that makes for curious reading, as peak twist is on between 6400 rpm to either 6600 or 6800 rpm. The engine is a snob, too, preferring 98 RON inside the 50L tank. Economy is rated at 8.4L/100 km on the combined cycle, a figure pretty well matched in the week long drive.That torque figure also belies the sheer tractability of the BRZ. It’ll rev happily to the redline figures, emitting a raspy snort somewhat at odds with the note you’d expect from a the boxer four. The gearing is such that although the PEAK torque is well over 6000, there’s plenty enough below for the BRZ to use it and use it well enough to see a zero to one hundred time of 7.4 to 8.2 seconds. The short throw, snicky, gear lever aids in this, making each gear just that much more accessible to the torque. It kinda helps that there’s less than 1300 kilos (dry) to get moving…There’s no change to the excellent ride, progressive and communicate braking, and handling either, with the BRZ willing to cock a rear corner when pushed yet still provide a comfortable enough ride from the MacPherson strut front and double wishbone rear suspension across a variety of road surfaces. On western Sydney’s mix of freeway and highway and residential roads, the BRZ varied between ignoring the various surface imperfections to feeling mildly unsettled without losing composure. The steering rack is also “fast” with instant response and a tight turn to lock either side, making for a real connection between driver and car. There’s skinnyish 215/45/17 Michelin tyres which, when combined with some exuberant driving (legally, of course) will have the car’s rear end liven up, skip around, feel like it’s about to break loose, and brings a smile to a driver’s dial.Getting in and out is still an issue, one that is not avoidable due to the low height. The roof is just 1320 mm above the tarmac, with the driver pretty much in the middle of the 2570 mm wheelbase, aiding the weight distribution and handling. With an overall length of 4240 mm it’s not the longest car in the world but with that wheelbase leaving around just 700 mm either end, it’s a long and lowish profile to drink in with the eyes.
There’s a bonnet longer than a boring conversation, a roof with a flattened vee for aero before sloping down to the new LED tail lights (which match the LED driving lights up front in Subaru’s current C shape ethos) and the stubby tail which hides the 218 litre cargo space and the space saver tyre.Inside…well, it’s a different story. There’s a mix of nice and not-so, with retro look tabs for the aircon, ill fitting soft touch material in the upper dash, a typical Toyota inspired blocky look to the actual dash fascia, mixed in with a simple to use yet effective touchscreen at 6.2 inches in size, backing up the 4.2 inch LCD screen embedded behind the speed and tacho dials. The sports seats are well bolstered, covered in grey and black material, and the driver gets alloy pedals for the sporting look. There’s auto self levelling headlights, steering wheel mounted Bluetooth audio controls, 2 12 volt sockets, and there’s a CD player also.No, there’s no room for adults behind the driver and passenger; it’s hard enough for the slide and tilt mechanism to cope with two children so adults genuinely have no hope. Even for a normal height driver, the gap between the front and rear seat makes it essentially unsafe to consider throwing anyone under 12 inches in height in the back. Although there’s the familiar (to anyone that’s had a two door car) pull strap to fold the upper seat section and slide the lower section forward, there’s just not enough leg room behind the two seats at all for genuine safety for the rear seat passengers.Warranty is Subaru’s standard three year/unlimited kilometre coverage, with 12 months road side assistance and the three year/60000 kilometre capped price servicing as well.
At The End Of The Drive.
Subaru lists the manual BRZ at $32990 plus ORCs, with the auto two thousand more. There’s a reasonable amount of standard equipment, enough to satisfy most in the hunt for a driver’s car and that’s the crux. It IS a driver’s car, especially with a manual transmission. It’s tightly sprung yet not so to be a teeth rattler. It’s snug inside and seriously not to be considered a family car…but you knew that, right?
For more details, head on over to here: 2017 Subaru BRZ