The Scion brand was only around for a short thirteen years. This sub brand from Toyota was meant to strike a chord with younger shoppers to ensure they could purchase a great vehicle at a reasonable price. The overall thought was to offer a brand of vehicles that had only a few options to help keep the pricing consistent and affordable. The transition for a car shopper of Scion was for them to purchase the Scion at an early age, move to a Toyota model in the second phase of car ownership and eventually head to the luxury arm of Toyota by purchasing a Lexus model later in their lives.
Now that Toyota has dissolved the Scion brand and brought most of the models into the lineup for Toyota they have chosen to rename the FR-S the Toyota 86. This new name comes with more than just a quick change of nameplates; the model that will be part of the 2017 lineup will have more of what we want from Toyota in a sports car to give us a car that is even more desirable than before.
The new Toyota 86 will receive upgrades to the interior and exterior to give it a bolder look and more stylish inside. Other changes will include and upgrade to the suspension and to the powertrain. What this means is you can have a new Toyota 86 with 205 horsepower and 158 lb.-ft. of torque. This is only a modest increase from the 200 horsepower and 151 lb.-ft. of torque that were present before, but it is more from this small power plant for us to enjoy the ride. The gear ratios are changes as well but we haven’t received specific details yet, but these are meant to give you a quicker change and much faster acceleration.
Another difference with the new Toyota 86 is the handling. This has been improved using a revised shock tuning and a change to the spring rate. You will certainly feel a difference from behind the wheel and may even love the Hill Start Assist Control that has been added to help keep the 86 from rolling away when you park in steep hills.
Across the outside you will notice a larger center intake, a new set of LED headlights and turn signals, upgraded fog lights and an improved front bumper. When you look to the rear of the car you see a new set of LED tail lights and a revised rear bumper. You may also notice the 86 logos that have been incorporated into the badging which includes the front headlights to give this car a signature name and look.
Another difference for the 86 is the fact this is the car that will be used for the Formula Drift championships by Ken Gushi, Ryan Tuerck and Frederic Abasbo. For this season all three are using the new Toyota 86 making this a car you can admire on the track and then enjoy driving for yourself. Even though the Scion brand is dead, the models live on and the upgrades made to the FR-S to create the new Toyota 86 make this a car that appears to be more fun to drive than ever before.