Subaru and Toyota planning further derivatives of their respective 86 and BRZ rear-drive coupes
The twins, especially the Toyota, put reasonably priced rear-drive Japanese sports cars back on the map. GT86 suppliers have struggled to meet demand. Above, a rendering shows what a GT86 sedan could look like.
So it’s no surprise the family will grow. Recent concepts have indicated at least a convertible and a possible shooting brake. But the big surprise will be under the hood.
First , Toyota unveiled the expected at the Geneva Motor Show: A convertible. Then Subaru showed a wagon BRZ concept in Tokyo. Now, the next piece of the puzzle is slowly coming into focus: a GT86-based four-door sedan.
A source close to Toyota has divulged that Subaru’s Cross Sport provides telling hints of what the Toyota four-door will look like. “It’d be easy to bring the B-pillar forward, add a rear door and slant the rear roof section to create a viable sedan look,” said our source.
Bearing a development code of 734A, we’re told the GT86 sedan measures 187 inches long, 70 inches wide, 55.1 inches high. It rides on a 108.2-inch wheelbase.
Making the car about the same size as Subaru’s current Legacy, the four-door will be 20.1 inches longer and 4 inches taller than the 86 overall, and its wheelbase 7.3 inches longer.
Given the 86 sedan’s extra size and weight, the stock coupe’s 200-hp 2.0-liter boxer engine would need beefing up. A source tells us that in place of the naturally aspirated 2.0-liter four-cylinder would be a combination that was initially said to be impossible for the 86.
Yes folks, a turbo. But not just any turbo. Toyota will insist on a 2.0-liter turbo-boxer being bolted to a revised version of its tried and proven hybrid system, pumping out around 300 hp.
In addition to a hybrid turbo powerplant, Toyota’s R&D department is currently testing in-wheel motors. Fitted at the front, they would make the four-door an all-wheel-drive sedan.
However, rather than a full-time AWD set-up, the idea would be to employ this in-wheel motor system at the front-end to act like Honda’s SH-AWD system. In other words, the system would only engage when rear-end traction is broken to quickly restore stability.
Of course, cost remains an important point for the R&D team. What will the market pay for expensive in-wheel motors and a hybrid-turbo powertrain– more than $30,000 for the standard 2.0-liter turbo and upwards of $40,000 for the hybrid turbo AWD?
Our source suggests Toyota will test the waters first, by introducing a 2.0-liter turbo sedan by late 2016. Depending on its success, it could follow this up with an AWD hybrid powertrain – in either the same car or a Lexus model.