Subaru x Toyota: The BRZ and FR-S. Not since Lamar Odom and Khloe Kardashian, the vampire from Twilight and the pale, skinny chick, or Bobby and Whitney (too soon?) have we seen so much hype from a blessed union. It’s for good reason, too. The Subaru-developed platform shared by Toyota (badged as a Scion for the U.S. market) looks to be dynamic, fun and, most importantly, affordable -- a rare combination in the market today.
With the first of the Subaru/Toyota cars fresh off the Japanese production line heading for U.S.-bound container ships, here are five reasons why you should think about making this your next car. With expected deliveries starting in May, that gives you about two months to come up with the down. Start hustling.
1. Rear-wheel Drive
This is the stuff sports cars are made of. Sure, front-wheel-drive cars are fast, but when’s the last time you saw a Formula One car light up its front wheels in anger? Braking doesn’t count. For fans of rear-tire-smoking drifting, you can add the Subaru BRZ and Scion FR-S to your list of potential cars.
Like prom queens post-graduation, cars have been progressively growing heavier over the years. The addition of safety measures and a list of growing standard features have added on the pounds. The BRZ and FR-S look to Jenny Craig the standard by coming in at about 2,700 - 2,800 pounds, Kate Moss-like for today’s standards. For comparison, a Ford Mustang (also rear-wheel drive) clocks in at over 3,400 lbs.
Okay, so the 200 hp and 151 lb.-ft. of torque the Subaru/Scion makes might not sound like a lot, but for a small, normally-aspirated, non-turbocharged 2.0-liter engine, that’s a grip considering its size. Factor in the lightweight factor from above in a balanced chassis and you have a car with plenty of pep.
4. Fuel Efficient
Scion just released fuel efficiency figures for the FR-S; a six-speed manual transmission FR-S puts out 22 city/30 highway miles per gallon while the six-speed automatic Scion achieves 25 city/34 highway. While far from a Toyota Prius, they’re respectable numbers for a sporty car.
Equipped with a six-speed manual transmission (the proper trim), the FR-S will start at $24,200. Tack on an additional $730 for destination fees and the FR-S still retails for under $25k. Not bargain basement, but affordable for a fun, rear-wheel drive car.
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