07 October 2009

The Return of The Hachiroku (86)

I last posted about Toyota and Subaru teaming up to co-develop an affordable sports-coupe.

Now, the official photos of the car (codemamed FT-86) is out. The FT-86 will make its world debut at the Tokyo Motor Show later this month. The production version of this 2+2 seater sports coupe, whose conceptual name harks back to the popular RWD Corolla AE86 or better known as Hachiroku, is due to go on sale towards the end of 2011.

“The FT-86 Concept is neither an electric vehicle nor a hybrid vehicle, but is a sports model with a gasoline engine developed to convey the essential appeal of automobiles in a new era. It is a must-see concept car that expresses TMC’s desire to once again create a Toyota sports car,” the Japanese automaker said in a release published on its official site.

The FT-86 is powered by a front-mounted, 2-liter four-cylinder boxer engine sourced from Subaru that drives the rear wheels. Official details are still scarce but our source says that Toyota opted to equip the concept model with a naturally-aspirated version of Subaru’s 2-liter flat four that produces 150hp in the Impreza. But it is very likely that Toyota has tweaked the engine to crank out a few more horses to boost output closer to the 200 mark.

It’s worth noting that in Japan, Subaru also offers a 2.0-liter turbocharged boxer with 250HP that powers the Impreza S-GT that we all know as the WRX in most markets.

Considering details are scarce, we can only guess at which powertrains will be available on the production version of the FT-86. Two logical choices will be either Subaru’s 2-liter and 2.5-liter four-cylinder boxer engines (depending on the market) in both naturally aspirated and turbocharged forms.

As for the looks of the car, our source suggests that the design of the car won’t change much when it reaches production in 2011. But the same can’t be said of the interior though as it still is too conceptual for production.

As mentioned before, the FT-86 will also spawn a Subaru version that will share the same underpinnings and mechanical hardware but according to the two Japanese automakers, the duo will feautre its own distinct styling.

06 October 2009

Cracked Ferrari

I saw this over at iCars Singapore and I must say its the most ingenious way of simultaneously spoiling a perfectly fine 599 in the name of publicity and making more money.