Photo courtesy of Toyota
BY H. THROTTLE
The bright red “Ablaze” colored 2017 Toyota 86 two-door coupe was the subject of a mountain drive this springtime week. Built in Ota Gunma, Japan, this is a small, sleek, fast and inexpensive sports car.
Built for a small frame and a skilled driver, the 86 takes some talent to drive with a six-speed stick shift linked to a “Boxer” four-cylinder engine with 205 horsepower. The fuel mileage is low at 24 mpg average.
The transmission is smooth through the six speeds, but shifting in metro traffic is constant clutching to low gear. Not a good drive in busy rush hours, and there is traffic most of the day into the evenings.
Taking the coupe on E-470, the compact coupe became a fun fast drive. It was hard to keep it under the speed limit, and no telling how fast this little package could go. The car seemed to handle and control better at high speed in fifth and six gear. The car has great suspension with outstanding cornering control. Power comes from the rear-wheel drive, very sports car oriented.
Running fast, a driver needs the front and rear ventilated disk brakes to slow down with the high performance. A hint at cornering comes with the famed McPherson front struts, just like the race cars, complimented with double wishbone rear suspension and “Torsen” limited-slip differential. The Japanese engineers created a simplistic sports car with almost no room in the rear seat, a small trunk and compact front seating. The dash is Spartan with few buttons and knobs.
This product has the Star Safety System Smart Stop Technology, front, side and curtain airbags in the very compact front seating area. No arm rest on the right side to rest the arm while doing a lot of gear changing.
The suggested retail price is a modest $27,120 with no extra options added to the pricing, except a delivery charge of $825.
This is a strange little car, high in performance at high speeds, and made for a younger driver who knows how to drive a stick shift and maintain safe speed levels. This car wants to run fast.
The safety rating is four-star average with the overall score not yet published on this very new model.
Good looking, fast moving, gear shifting high performance at a low price, but too small for a set of skis or snowboard.
Millennials might really go for this car?
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