Is the Subaru BRZ for you? Let’s break it down
As Subaru’s only rear-wheel-drive car, the BRZ has some pretty exciting features that you don’t often see under the star-spangled badge.
It’s sleek, powerful, and yes, it’s got paddle shifters.
You might be looking at the Subaru BRZ and wondering whether this is a car for you.
It’s a good question. And one that we’ll take a hard look at below.
What exactly is the BRZ?
The Boxer Rear-wheel-drive Zenith, or BRZ for short, was born in 2013 alongside its twin, the Toyota Scion FR-S (now the Toyota 86). The sports coupe is the result of excellent Japanese engineering and the hard work of two companies that honestly needed something sporty to put on the shelves.
And not a bad effort at that.
Although it’s classed as a sedan, it somehow manages to compete with the Ford Mustang all the way through to the Mazda Miata and Golf GTI. How can it possibly do all this? The answer is simple – smart engineering, low price point, and strong brand loyalty.
Is the Subaru BRZ safe?
Of course, but it’s not your ideal family car. Think of it more like the car your parents would never let you have, but you went and got anyway. In that sense, it’s a very likable car – even though you know your grandparents would disapprove – but that’s pretty much its charm.
Sure, it lacks some safety gear, like adaptive cruise control, or emergency braking, but overall the car itself is very well designed and gets a 5-star ANCAP safety rating.
Is the Subaru BRZ a family car?
The Subaru BRZ is not a family car. And not for the lack of high-tech safety features. Simply because there’s no room in the boot for three kids’ bags, let alone any of your own things.
As a teenager, the BRZ might be a cool car to look at – but sitting in the back seat once you’ve reached 6 feet will be more like a punishment than anything else. It’s true, there’s limited room back there, for luggage and passengers alike. If you’re thinking of starting a family, or already have one – make sure you’re not doing any long family trips in the BRZ – you might be pushed for space.
Ok, so who is the Subaru BRZ for?
If you like the sound of tyres squealing as you come through the corner, paddle shifters pointed between your fingers, and the smell of rubber seeping through the windows, all for under 40 grand, then this car is for you.
No-fuss driving – that’s what this car is designed to do. And that’s who should be at the wheel – someone who can’t help but cackle at the thought of a drag race with their mates, but also get a kick out of heated seats and leather steering wheels.
Not your average drive
There’s no doubt about it, people own the BRZ to have fun behind the wheel. If you find driving boring – don’t buy this car. Or maybe you should buy it. Because it might even change your mind.
Don’t expect an average drive in the BRZ. Why? Because it’s faster than your average car and it won’t apologise for making loud noises. In fact, many people have actually complained about the noise levels, particularly in the back. Again, you need to really love driving to want to own this car. For those who are all in on the Subaru brand and have genuine fun toying with the upper echelons of the rev count – this can be a wild ride.
Just the right power levels
These days with the markets filling up with 500 horsepower+ sports cars, handing the keys over to a young amateur can be a deadly mistake. However, the BRZ offers the perfect alternative, offering just the right amount of engine enthusiasm coupled with the right look and price to talk someone down from buying a fully-fledged 460 horsepower Ford Mustang. For those on the lookout – the new Subaru BRZ, due to arrive in 2022, will feature even more power than its current 205 horsepower, with 15% more torque. Bring it on.
Time to talk about handling
To get the most out of the BRZ, you’ll want to choose the manual transmission and, if you can afford it, go for the tS trim. Why? It’s the most fun, and yes, you’ll go faster. Being able to maintain high revs when changing gear can greatly improve performance. Then there’s the BRZ’s near-telepathic responsiveness coupled with the low centre of gravity – a blessing on the track.
What features does the BRZ have?
Anyone looking to own a BRZ can expect the same features present in any modern car, from dual climate control, USB and Bluetooth connectivity, and Subaru’s responsive and easy-to-use StarLink infotainment system. For its low price, the BRZ is basically built from leather on the inside – with a letter steering wheel and plenty of stylish accenting around the cabin.
Should I buy the BRZ? The verdict
If you’re looking to save a buck, but also want a sports coupe, you need to consider the Subaru BRZ. It goes without saying that as one of Australia’s cheapest sports cars, it clocks in with excellent fuel economy for its class, and can be a perfect car for anyone wanting a fun day at the track and then go grocery shopping without anyone batting an eyelid.
Think you’re ready to try? Give your local Subaru Dealership a call and book a test drive today.
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