Toyota FT-86 will carry Subaru’s 2.0-liter 4-cylinder boxer engine

Article by Christian Andrei, on May 1, 2011

There’s a significant amount of interest and excitement surrounding Toyota’s FT-86 sports coupe. Fans won’t be in for a long wait as Toyota has revealed that the model will start selling in 2012. The production car is powered by a Subaru’s new 2.0-liter 4-cylinder boxer engine that uses Toyota's D-4S technology.

It features both direct injection and port injection. While Toyota has yet to reveal its performance figures, it claims that the D4-S technology leads to a boost in horsepower and torque without compromising fuel consumption and environmental performance.

The latest version of the 2.0-liter unit is seen in the newest Impreza models, where it has an output of 148 hp and 145 lb-ft (197 Nm), which is 22 hp lower than the outgoing 2.5-liter.

Of course, this much horsepower in a sportscar is unusual but the aerodynamics in the FT-86 is expected to be topnotch. The Toyota FT-86 will not be fitted with the Impreza’s 5-speed or CVT boxes but it will be available with either a six-speed manual gearbox or a six-speed automatic transmission.

Toyota said that the manual will provide quick and precise shifts with a short-throw. On the other hand, the automatic transmission has sporty shifts that are controlled by steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifts. Toyota also said that it will get a limited-slip differential.

Toyota is taking the wraps off its new FT-86 II Concept at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show, presenting what is most likely the final design of its next sports car. The unveiling of the new FT-86 II Concept – designed by Toyota's European design studio ED2 -- would celebrate a return to the passion for driving that has been the inspiration of iconic Toyota vehicles like the 2000 GT of the 1960s.

This marks the latest phase in the development of a new compact rear-wheel drive sports car as being developed by Toyota and Fuji Heavy Industries. The resulting sports car will be launched in Europe in 2012. Just looking at the long, low bonnet, rear-set cabin and high wings of the new Toyota FT-86 II Concept, onlookers could easily conclude that this is a driver-oriented prototype that pays tribute to the carmaker’s vaunted sports car history.

During its creation, the FT-86 II Concept was dubbed as 'functional beauty,' as its sweeping form is a result of careful considerations of function and aerodynamics. For instance, the concept features a low yet highly aerodynamic body shell that’s tightly stretched over its hard points as well as muscular yet compact body work. Its dimensions stand at 4,235 mm in length, 1,795 mm in width and 1,270 mm in height, with a wheelbase of 2,570 mm.

Toyota chose to have the FT-86 II Concept powered by a free-revving boxer gasoline engine with a lightweight and compact six-speed manual gearbox, instead of employing a large displacement powertrain. With this powertrain choice, as well as a low centre of gravity, the new FT-86 II Concept enjoys a good power-to-weight ratio.

Moreover, Toyota was able to make this concept stable and agile even at high speeds by setting the powertrain and the driving position as low and as far back as possible. Its front-engine/rear-wheel drive configuration makes it easier for its driver to access the performance needed to have a spirited drive.

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