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Monday 13th February 2012

Subaru BRZ: big brother's little brother

Want your GT 86 to stand out (a bit) from the crowd? Buy the Subaru version instead then



The Subaru BRZ briefly steps out from behind the shadows of the identical Toyota GT 86 with the announcement that it'll get its European debut at the Geneva motor show in March.
Basic interior on RA means basic
Basic interior on RA means basic
The importer still couldn't give us any news on pricing or specification when it arrives here in July (details that Toyota has already supplied about the GT 86, which will cost £24,995), but Subaru is predicting annual sales 'in the hundreds'.

That's shy of the 4,000-odd Toyota is aiming for, but it will go a long way to restore the reputation of Subaru has a performance brand in the UK.

At the moment the firm is headed more off road than on track. Top seller last year was the Forester SUV with 1041 registered, followed by the Legacy-based Outback jacked-up estate on 700 sales. By contrast the WRX STI saloon sold just 188.

The standard Impreza isn't on sale any more, which essentially kills the badge in the UK (the WRX doesn't wear that name any more). The company says it is in talks about whether bring in the new model, but that won't happen until 2013.

So all hopes are pinned on the BRZ, which has gone on sale in Japan at the start price of 2.06m yen (£16,779). That's for the RA which, like the Toyota GT 86 RC, strips out extras like air conditioning, stereo, fog lamps, alloys and even the plastic engine cover to offer tuners a blank canvas to work with. That also means 16-inch steel wheel as standard, however, unlike Toyota, Subaru does generously pre-paint the bumpers front and rear.

JDM RA revives classic Subaru name
JDM RA revives classic Subaru name
Sadly we won't get this bare bones model in the UK, but the importer has said we will get two versions instead of the one planned by Toyota. We bet that will include a standard boot light (another extra missing on the RC), as well as 17-inch alloys, Torsen rear limited slip differential and the option of a six-speed automatic gearbox.

Subaru wouldn't confirm rumours that the BRZ is likely to come with tauter suspension settings than the GT 86, but did keep hopes alive of a hotter model in the future. "I wouldn't rule out a high performance version of the car" said a spokesman for the UK importer.

So at launch the choice as whether you go Toyota or Subaru depends pretty much on what you think of the badge. "We are convinced that the combination of heritage, brand image and the strength of the dealer network a lot of people will prefer to buy a Subaru over a Toyota," said the spokesman.

The fact that its four-cylinder engine in flat 'boxer' configuration is a Subaru development might sway the decision for some but it's clear the BRZ is going to be a rarer sight on British roads than its Toyota brother.

NickGibbs
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Author Discussion

Krikkit

Original Poster:

5,149 posts

68 months

[news] 
Monday 13th February 2012 quote quote all
I'd take an RA - stick some 16" BBS CHs on there for the GT look and it's a real winner in my eyes... Until you start getting modded bodyparts and lairy cams of course.

Andrew[MG]

2,846 posts

85 months

[news] 
Monday 13th February 2012 quote quote all
No new news here???

mr2j

439 posts

45 months

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Monday 13th February 2012 quote quote all
will any of it come down to aftersales packages for your average buyer? will having a toyota just sound safer, financially and practically (on the face of it at least)?

Vilhelm

406 posts

36 months

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Monday 13th February 2012 quote quote all
I like that base model. frown

Benny Saltstein

567 posts

100 months

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Monday 13th February 2012 quote quote all
Litchfield Imports are already hinting at the upgrade packages they'll offer on their site. I'm sure they'll be looking to import the RA and breathe on it too.

Regarding the aftersales package, I recently got a mailing from Subaru on the XV which listed the new ETC package. Maybe the penny has dropped at IM that with the unfavourable £/Yen exchange rate they'll need to pull something out of the bag although I don't think ETC is inclusive of servicing.
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epom

2,653 posts

48 months

[news] 
Monday 13th February 2012 quote quote all
gold alloys shirley !!

gmh23

249 posts

67 months

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Monday 13th February 2012 quote quote all
epom said:
gold alloys shirley !!
Yup, has to be blue with gold alloys, photoshop anyone?

Mr Gear

9,121 posts

77 months

[news] 
Monday 13th February 2012 quote quote all
gmh23 said:
epom said:
gold alloys shirley !!
Yup, has to be blue with gold alloys, photoshop anyone?
fk that st, I'm loving the painted steelies! Wear 'em proud! No hubcaps!

TEKNOPUG

9,845 posts

92 months

[news] 
Monday 13th February 2012 quote quote all
£24k for the UK model? Must be some grey import bargains to be had once they’ve been out in Japan for 6months or so.

daveknott5

653 posts

106 months

[news] 
Monday 13th February 2012 quote quote all
what about this:



Tasty.

cossey

71 posts

76 months

[news] 
Monday 13th February 2012 quote quote all
I would prefer the Subaru over the Toyota as the car is largely Subaru's work but 5 years warranty vs 3 years for the same money meant that it didn't make much sense.

Kong

1,491 posts

58 months

[news] 
Monday 13th February 2012 quote quote all
daveknott5 said:
what about this:



Tasty.
That is the first incarnation or the GT86/BRZ which i've actually though 'yum!'

What's been done to it?

cjdoyle

19 posts

64 months

[news] 
Monday 13th February 2012 quote quote all
Can't wait to see what style wheel covers they offer.

cptsideways

10,795 posts

139 months

[news] 
Monday 13th February 2012 quote quote all
If the RA version was available to order at or near the yen price in the UK I have a deposit here waiting for one.

Looks like a jdm import for me then

stuart-b

3,059 posts

113 months

[news] 
Monday 13th February 2012 quote quote all
daveknott5 said:
what about this:



Tasty.
Plus a nice big turbo and the world's loudest blow off valve, and we're on the right track wink

Jellymonster

288 posts

81 months

[news] 
Monday 13th February 2012 quote quote all
daveknott5 said:
what about this:



Tasty.
Phwoor.

soad

19,700 posts

63 months

[news] 
Monday 13th February 2012 quote quote all
daveknott5 said:
what about this:



Tasty.
Very nice.

Ali_T

1,790 posts

144 months

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Monday 13th February 2012 quote quote all
They're not bringing in the new Impreza yet and not untiil next year at the earlist? It's been on sale in the US for 6 months already! IM really have no clue.

Gary C

1,113 posts

66 months

[news] 
Monday 13th February 2012 quote quote all
stuart-b said:
Plus a nice big turbo and the world's loudest blow off valve, and we're on the right track wink
And it will fit right in at maccy d's smile



Carpal

661 posts

75 months

[news] 
Monday 13th February 2012 quote quote all
I think that looks great on steelies.
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