Toyota have been fiddling with their rear-wheel drive 86 sports car and have revealed a few changes they’ve made ahead of its official launch at next week’s New York motor show. The mid-life update includes some exterior changes, minor interior revisions and very small increases in power and torque. Sadly, there still isn’t a turbocharged engine on offer.
From the front, you’ll spot a newly revised front bumper which houses a larger front grille that stretches across the entire width of the car, which Toyota thinks helps to emphasise the 86’s low and wide stance. There’s also two aggressive looking sharp points along the bottom which almost look like teeth ready to bite. Toyota have also added LED headlights which feature a new indicator design, with a modified fog-light bezel below.
Around the back the rear bumper is all new, and restyled LED tail lights complete the update. From this angle you’ll also notice the new twist-spoke wheel designs, and the fact that the Toyota designers have moved the fender-vent logo lower down the front guard.
The 2.0L 4-cylinder boxer engine’s output has grown from 147kW (197hp) to 153kW (205hp), while torque has also received a small bump from 205Nm (151lb-ft) up to 212Nm (56lb-ft). These minor increases are for the manual transmission models only, with the automatic equipped cars retaining the outputs of the current model. Toyota is promising “additional performance” thanks to different gear ratios for the six-speed manual transmission, and there’s now Hill Start Assist Control. New shock tuning and spring rates promise to improve handling, too.
Another noteworthy change is that the Toyota 86 will no longer be sold as a Scion FR-S in the USA, as part of Toyota’s transition away from their ‘youthful’ Scion branding. “When we announced the transition of the Scion models to Toyota we hadn’t planned on changing the names of our cars, but by popular demand, for our sports car, we decided to adopt the global name of 86,” said Toyota Division Group Vice President Bill Fay.