This, boys and girls, is the new Toyota GT86. And you’ll see immediately that it looks quite a lot like the car it replaces.
It’s a sure sign that a car is quite good when updates are kept mild, and given it’s a previous Top Gear Car of the Year winner, the little ’86 is certainly pretty decent.
The facelift for the GT86 coincides with the introduction of the Toyota 86 in America, which steps into the shoes filled by the departing Scion FR-S.
The drivetrain is unaltered, so you might still be left wanting for torque and grip if you’ve been bred on turbocharged hot hatches, but you shouldn’t be left wanting for smiles if you appreciate a slick gearchange and the agility of a light, simple rear-driven sports car. The bald stats? 197bhp, 0-62mph in 7.6 seconds and a 140mph top speed.
Changes are all aesthetic, then; there are new LED-equipped lights, more dramatic bumpers and air intakes, and some new, flashier alloy wheels. It looks more premium and a bit more assertive than before.
Toyota is also promising “improved sensory quality” inside, with leather, Alcantara and a new sports steering wheel, which now comes with audio controls for the first time. There are no interior pics to back any of this up yet, mind.
Prices and specs aren’t yet ready, but expect things to stay below £25,000 for an entry-level car, and sales by Autumn. The GT86 – and its slightly more powerful, American ‘Toyota 86’ iteration – will appear at next week’s New York motor show.
Like the looks?