By Otsile Kadiege
In September 2019, Toyota and Subaru entered into a new business and capital alliance, and committed to making ever-better cars in new segments. Both also share a desire to continue delivering the excitement, thrill, and joy of driving sports cars.
The new Toyota GR86 was jointly developed with Subaru which means it shares the same base as the Subaru BRZ. However, Toyota focused on delivering the unique driving feel of a GR vehicle with intuitive handling and instinctive responsiveness, linear response as well as outstanding agility at the upper limits of performance.
With fender tops that extend horizontally to the beltline, the GR86 silhouette highlights its appeal as a front-engine, rear-wheel-drive vehicle. Its low, horizontal underbody and narrow cabin rear combine to underline the breadth of the vehicle and its low centre of gravity, and hint at its intuitive responsiveness.
The front of the vehicle features the GR-specific Functional MATRIX Grille, which fuses performance and aesthetics. Toyota has redesigned the GR86 logo to mark its evolution from the 86 to the GR86.
Inside, the GR86 operating system ― which includes the horizontally-accented instrument panel and various switches―is optimally located to enable the driver to focus on driving.
Equipped with a BOXER Meter, comprising a 7-inch touchscreen and LCD metres, the car’s opening animation sequence is inspired by the piston movements of the GR86’s horizontally opposed engine, and fosters a sense of excitement even before the drive begins.
The metre display embodies the GR86’s sports performance, changing according to which driving mode is engaged.
The GR86 features lightweight front seats which use independent pads used to support the body, and, in order to withstand the lateral and longitudinal g-forces generated during aggressive sports driving, they are covered in an extremely grippy material.
The 2.0-litre engine in previous generation Toyota 86 has been increased to 2.4-litre. It remains a naturally aspirated 4-cylinder engine but now develops 173 kW at 7,000 rpm and 250 Nm at 3,700 rpm.
Toyota claims the new engine also delivers a “smooth, stress-free sensations from low to high rpms.” Power is sent to the rear-wheels via a 6-speed manual transmission or the optional 6-speed automatic transmission. The automaker also claims the GR86 will sprint from 0-100 km/h in 6.3 seconds, which is 1.1 seconds faster that the previous generation Toyota 86.
The GR86 is equipped with D-4S, a dedicated twin injector that optimally controls two types of injection according to driving conditions: direct injection, which directly injects fuel into the combustion chamber, and the more common port injection, which directly injects fuel into the intake port.
The dimensions of the new GR86 are almost identical to the previous model. However, by limiting both the overall height and hip-point of the vehicle, and by positioning the seats further toward its center, the car realizes a lower center-of-gravity and enhanced turning performance.
The GR86 is equipped with EyeSight5 Driver Assist Technology (AT grades only). Featuring pre-collision braking technologies that help avoid collisions and mitigate damage, the system provides support for safe everyday driving.
Toyota South Africa Motors says local timing for launch as well as sales will be confirmed in 2022.
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