Our sports coupe market has just become even more exciting with the official launch of the Subaru BRZ today by exclusive distributor Motor Image Pilipinas--just five months after its identical twin, the Toyota 86, was introduced locally.
The name BRZ is acronym for Boxer engine, Rear-wheel drive, Zenith, "which embodies Subaru's passion to design and develop an ultimate sports car that features its core technology, the boxer engine."
Developed as a joint project between Subaru and Toyota, the BRZ supposedly realizes both manufacturers' ambitions to offer a wide range of customers a pure sports car with superior steering response and handling.
The BRZ is readily distinguishable from its Toyota twin by its front fascia. It sports a hexagonal-shaped grille instead of an inverted trapezoid, while its daytime running lights are composed of LED strips instead of individually lit LED bulbs.
What also makes the BRZ special for Subaru is that it is the Japanese carmaker's first front-engined, rear-wheel-drive coupe.
According to Subaru, the BRZ is defined by five characteristics:
* Power, courtesy of the unique horizontally opposed Subaru boxer engine;
* Lowest possible center of gravity;
* Lightweight and highly rigid body;
* Advanced in-car electronic system for vehicle stability control; and
* Elegant design with excellent aerodynamic performance
Powering the BRZ is Subaru's newly developed 2.0-liter FA engine that puts out 200hp and 205Nm of torque. The engine is also the first of its kind to combine Toyota's direct and port fuel-injection technology with Subaru's new-generation boxer engine, enhancing the car's responsiveness and fuel efficiency.
With its inherently low center of gravity, the BRZ delivers a new level of handling precision that was achieved by carefully integrating every single element of the car--including the streamlined exterior design, roofline, seat positioning, and the flat, boxer-engine design.
The BRZ's lightweight and highly rigid body, meanwhile, is built with high-tensile steel to reduce weight while making the chassis solid and precise.
Keeping the BRZ in check is its advanced vehicle stability control electronic system, which monitors braking, steering and cornering to keep drivers from losing control as they push the car to its limits.
The shape of the car has also been specifically designed to optimize airflow and aerodynamic performance, while retaining an elegant and stylish look. Clever interior design paves the way for exceptional views from all angles, giving drivers greater command over their surroundings.
Other creature comforts of the BRZ include keyless access with push-button start, dual-zone automatic air-conditioning, and paddle shifters (for the automatic variant, of course).
As we reported just a couple of days ago, the BRZ, whether in six-speed manual or paddle-shift-equipped automatic guise, has a price tag of P1.928 million.
"There has been mounting anticipation for the BRZ since it received outstanding reviews at the Los Angeles Auto Show and Tokyo Motor Show late last year," said Glenn Tan, executive director of Tan Chong International Limited, which owns Motor Image, the official distributor of Subaru vehicles in the ASEAN region. "I am confident that the BRZ will deliver a driving experience that will surpass all expectations, in line with our pure-handling-delight philosophy. For those who have long anticipated the arrival of the BRZ, the wait is finally over!"
Photos by Alfred Mendoza
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