This fall, we’ll see the updated, and in the case of North America’s Scion FR-S, renamed and rebadged, versions of the Toyobaru coupes, the Subaru BRZ and Toyota 86.
Just like the current iterations, the facelifted models are fundamentally the same car with the same basic body, transmissions, platform and engine, somewhat differing in styling details and equipment levels. There’s a question of whether they’ll have any differences in their suspension and steering settings, but even if they do, they’ll probably be too subtle for most drivers to notice on the road.
It will be a while before we drive them, but seeing the two cars in pictures, Subaru’s 2017 BRZ continues to give the impression of having a slightly more mature face than the more playful Toyota 86. Otherwise, it’s just nitpicking details like the different headlamp fixtures, the 86’s two vs the BRZ’s single strake fender vent, and the BRZ’s standard aluminum boot spoiler.
It’s a similar story inside with the two models differing only in trims, standard and extra features, colors, badges, infotainment systems and instrument panel graphics. Speaking of the instrument cluster, while the pictured 86 lacks the press photo BRZ’s 4.2-in LCD multifunction display on the right side, the latter is standard only on the Limited trim, which will likely be the case with the Toyota model too.
As a quick refresher, both the BRZ and 86 get a revised chassis, an extra 5hp and 5 lb-ft on the 6-speed manual models pushing output to 205hp and and 156 lb-ft of torque (automatic cars keep the same 200hp and 151 lb-ft engine as before), and a new steering wheel with updated controls.
Having said all that, we wonder if there’s even a point in asking you whether you like one more than the other, but you can tell us either way.