2022 Toyota GR 86 vs Subaru BRZ: What are the key differences?

Updated Apr 07, 2021 | Same topic: Automotive FYIs

These two are still twinning, but with a slight twist.

Toyota has unleashed the second iteration of the 86 sports car for the 2022 model year, now reborn as the GR 86 to reflect its motorsports-based branding. This was preceded by the second generation of its badge-engineered version from Subaru, the BRZ, which was unveiled in November 2020.

 
Comparing the 2022 Toyota GR 86 with the 2022 Subaru BRZ

As with the previous release, both cars essentially run on the same mechanical bits while mostly sharing the same aesthetics. But aside from the badge, what are the things that set them apart?   

Exterior

Once again having a common chassis, the new GR 86 and BRZ sport the same silhouette. The significant differences start at the front, where the sculpted hood terminates in an upturned grille on the Subaru featuring vertical slats. It’s a more serious-looking fascia for the Toyota, as the GR-specific ‘Functional Matrix’ grille with honeycomb mesh pattern gives the impression of a scowling visage, complete with the GR badge on the upper right corner.

Toyota GR 86Subaru BRZ

The 2022 GR 86 (left) again shares its aesthetics with the 2022 BRZ

Even the air intakes at the corners of the front bumper are shaped differently between the two. The GR86 has slimmer ones shaped somewhat like boomerangs compared to the more bulbous openings on the BRZ.

A black lower lip lies below the BRZ grille. Another distinction is the black side mirror housings on the GR 86, which are rendered in body color on the BRZ.

GR 86 wheelBRZ wheel

Both use the same alloy wheels, in different colors

Although both use the same 10-spoke alloy wheels wrapped in Michelin Pilot Sport rubbers, those on the BRZ come in a gunmetal color, while the GR 86 uses gloss black.

Interior

The interiors on both the Toyota and Subaru are identical for the most part, interchangeable even, with only subtle alterations.

GR 86 cockpitBRZ cockpit

The cockpits are nearly identical, except for some minor elements

Apart from the Toyota branding on the steering wheel, the GR 86 again carries a GR badge on the bottom spoke and the engine start button. The same 2+2 seating layout is common to both cars, with the BRZ using a more eye-catching red detail stitching as opposed to the plain black threads on the GR 86.    

Tech & Safety

Tech hardware is the same across both models, having a customizable 7-inch digital instrument panel that Toyota saw fit to preface with a piston animation sequence when starting up. An 8-inch touchscreen head unit with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity can be found at the dashboard’s center stack, along with banks of switches and dials for the climate control system.

Automatic transmission versions of both cars come equipped with Subaru EyeSight driver-assist technology, utilizing stereoscopic cameras on features including collision avoidance and mitigation features as well as emergency rescue support. The assisted steering feature has been removed to shed weight, consistent with the cars’ sporty nature.

Powertrain

Both the GR 86 and BRZ receive a bigger power plant by way of a 2.4L horizontally opposed gasoline engine that makes up to 249 Nm of torque. Power on the BRZ is rated at 228 hp, while the GR86 makes slightly more at 232 hp. Spinning the rear wheels is a choice of either a 6-speed manual or a 6-speed automatic gearbox.  

GR 86 engine BRZ engine

It's the same engine under their hoods, with the GR 86 making slightly more power

The new models ride on custom MacPherson front struts and double wishbones at the rear, combined with a more rigid chassis and aluminum components. This serves to lower the center of gravity, as well as offset the added weight of the new engine and added safety features.

Both the 2022 Toyota GR 86 and Subaru BRZ will be up for sale near the end of 2021, with pricing still under wraps. Motor Image Pilipinas has already confirmed that the new BRZ is coming here, while Toyota Motor Philippines is still being its usual secretive self. Fans of both models (and sports cars in general) will have to wait just a little longer.

See more car comparisons at Philkotse.com.

Know more about Toyota 86

Toyota 86

The Toyota 86, or GT 86 in other markets, is a 2-door sports car produced together by Toyota and Subaru. It shares the same engine and platform with the Subaru BRZ, while having slight variances when it comes to exterior and interior design. Under the hood, the Toyota 86 uses 2.0-liter, naturally aspirated boxer engine. While this engine is produced by Subaru, it uses Toyota's D4-S fuel injection system. At most, the engine can make up to 200 horsepower and 205 Nm of torque. Power is sent to the rear via a six-speed manual transmission.

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Joseph Paolo Estabillo

Joseph Paolo Estabillo

Author

Joseph has been a member of various car clubs since he got his driver's license in 2004 – old enough to remember riding in taxicabs with analog meters, but his fascination with cars goes way back. After nearly two decades of working in broadcast media, he shifted gears by coming on board as Philkotse’s first Filipino member and staff writer in 2017.

Apart from his role in Philkotse as Content Team Lead, Joseph has written episodes for Drive, which has been airing on CNN Philippines for five seasons running. He has also delivered content for various car dealerships based in the U.S., spanning multiple brands such as Alfa Romeo, Maserati, Jeep, Dodge, among others.

Keeping his hopes high and his revs low, he dreams about owning a Kei car when he retires. Hates slow parkers.

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