General

The new GR86 may be the best sports car Toyota has ever made

GQ-UK

This car replaces the GT86, which was produced from 2012 to last year and was a great success with enthusiasts. The third car in the GR range, alongside the GR Yaris and GR Supra, the GR86 – (named after Toyota’s official Gazoo Racing motorsport and performance division) – is lower, wider and 35hp more powerful than the GT. long fought for the extra appearance that the chassis could clearly have. Now it has a playful 231 horsepower. It also weighs 10kg less and has 50 percent increased torsional rigidity, so it spins like a spooky bug.

Zero to 60 mph in 6.3 seconds makes it over a second faster than the GT86, even if it’s still not blazing fast. It’s just as fast as the comparably priced Volkswagen Golf GTi, although the Golf hits the Toyota’s 140 at 250 mph. The thing with the Toyota; you can have tons of fun without losing your license. The upcoming Honda Civic Type-R will likely have 350 horsepower, a 0-60 times closer to five seconds and a price around 30,000. Good luck with the insurance.

Simplicity extends to the design of the rear-wheel drive car, which is bold and sporty, but not aggressive – at least compared to Type-R. There are only three color options: red, white and black, the Toyota Gazoo Racing swatch book.

Why is this segment an endangered species? As manufacturers move away from pure gasoline performance models and anything even resembling it, a high dose of CO2 can be emitted. Hybrids are, of course, heavy and expensive. Soon, the Mazda MX-5 may be the only affordable sports car on the market. The GR86 will no longer be available in Europe in 2024, so with a two-year runtime it will be a very limited and sought-after used car – something flippers have already taken notice of, it seems. The reason for the short lifespan is an EU mandate that will soon require the sale of new cars with more safety equipment, such as cameras for reading road signs and better protection against passenger collisions – things that make cars more expensive and heavier.