Subaru 216A, the Uber Toyota FT-86

As if Toyotaku weren’t already miffed enough that the long-awaited return of the AE86 was packin’ a Subaru 2.0L boxer under its sloping hood, here’s a little salt for that wound: it appears that the top line version of the Toyota FT-86 will actually be a Subaru.

Not only will the Subaru 216A wear a seven star badge, it’ll run AWD and sling a turbocharger good for about 308ps. According to Best Car magazine as reported on 7tune, it will also measure 20cm larger in every dimension, weigh 220lbs more, and cost about 10 grand more than the FT-86.

[Source: 7tune]

This post is filed under: subaru, toyota and
tagged: , , , , .

44 Responses to Subaru 216A, the Uber Toyota FT-86

  1. Khaled said:

    Bastard 🙁 we don’t need another wrx. When i heard this car had a subaru engine it was a big let down. So much of what made the ae86 so good was the toyota 4age engine. Why couldn’t they make the FT-86 have a 2zz type engine like in the celica gts and keep it toyota. It seems like they made an attempt to resurrect the 86, but got distracted, took some shortcuts, gave up, threw a subaru engine in there, and sold it to subaru……

  2. G-zilla said:

    Sorry i’f anyone disagrees, but i think it’s better looking than the -86

  3. Speedstar said:

    I can just see wangan battles between the two!!!!!

  4. Jeremy said:

    I am very hesitant to agree, but G-zilla is right; it looks so much better. At least its not a Chevrolet.


  5. cesariojpn said:


  6. miles.bidd said:

    yeah… i’d have to agree… it does look better… but remember, its still based off the toyota design.. actually it very much could still be designed by toyota, its the badge that kills it…
    why couldnt toyota just offer this model as well??? like a FT-86 GTS???? hello?!?!

  7. Lincoln Stax said:

    You all need to remember this is just what BestCar magazine photoshopped together from the FT-86. The production Subaru will likely look different. Possibly very different. I think I prefer the Toyota (regardless of what the Subaru eventually looks like) because I prefer RWD and lightweight over AWD and horsepower.

  8. Kev said:

    If teh FT86 is the ToyoBaru, then this surely is the SubOta

  9. banpei said:

    I think I already know what the most common engine swap will be of the ToyoBaru counterpart! 😉

    I think it is a good thing that Subaru sticks to its roots. I could not imagine them launching an RWD sportscar… For Toyota it would not be that weird since they had their history with the Celica GT-four.

    And don’t forget this is the first time we got any (unconfirmed) specs of the SubOta so it could very well change within a week, like we saw happening with the 086a specs.

  10. Dan said:

    Keeping the “low-end” model Toyota is fine by me. Lighter + RWD = more in line with the original AE86 anyways. This will definitely make for some interesting engine swaps though =D

  11. totes mcgotes said:

    awd = expensive and imo failure. besides, someone will just swap (mistake maybe???) hopefully keeping a toyota engine inside of it

  12. Mr.L.J. Nordvik said:

    I never trust rumours so I’ll reserve judgement untill the thing actually hits production. Also,I don’t know why but I’ve got a feeling Toyota has something else on the way too,in terms of affordable sportscars…

  13. DerrickS said:

    Heavier = “FAIL”
    Lighter = “FUN”

    The Toyota is still ugly though. Not much you can do about that. But who cares? Why would you buy this car? Sporting fun? No. You already have an old car for that. You want to get around town in style with a little fun splashed in? Well, you can buy most any car available today to do that with. I don’t see the point except to create a car for me to shop around craigslist for in 10 to 15 years.

  14. Sr-FairladyZ said:

    Man, I have been ALL FOR the FT-86 and still am totally, BUT (insert bitching here) I really can’t stand the Sub boxer engine sound. When I hear AE86, I think of 9,000RPM banshee screams crying to be released into the awaiting gear. I don’t think of the lazy misfiring like burble of a boxer engine. This fact is just eating me up inside! I am so excited about Toyota’s reborn sports car category, but because of that engine (NOT cause its a “Suby” engine, but because its a boxer engine). I mean Suby is just a name, but we are talking engine configuration and I just think any 86 sibling should scream the note of it’s successor. Even more so, the LFA (queue angelic vocals and epic violins) is cracking out one of the most unreal engine notes in the last 30yrs (or ever), you would hope that their entry level sports car would try to imitate this in a smaller scale, say a 240hp 20 Valve VVT-I 2.0 Red @ 8,500rpm? It’s too bad Toyota didn’t match up with Honda. This thing S2K powered would be spot on my desire.

  15. Too much coupe STi. Hey there is still the Hyundai Genesis for RWD inline 4 fun.

  16. bert said:

    We all have to remember that the sports came to be because of motor swapping, trading designs, modifications, and more importantly just doing the best you can with what youv’e got. ESPECIALLY in bad economic times. I would really love to see some form of a 4AGE successor in this thing, but let’s be real, they haven’t been in production for some years now. Right now Toyota is trying to give the masses what they want with what they can get, and Subaru is trying to get back to their somewhat sporty roots. I think we should all be glad that the old formula of obtainable (read cheap!) and lightweight sports car is not totally dead yet. Besides, with todays modern advances, engine swaps are more possible today then they were some years ago.

    • Ben said:

      Sr-fairladyZ – That would be awesome. Honda spent way too many R&D dollars on the F20C to use it in just one model, which is now dead.

      bert – I agree. Let’s be grateful some great cars are coming our way.

      One of the keys was making the FT-86 affordable, as in under $20K, so using an existing engine and spreading the design across platforms was necessary.

  17. SubaruGuy said:

    I love Subarus and Toyotas and more. I’ve owned both. A couple of notes to make people happier, maybe.

    First, equal length headers gets rid of that boxer sound. Sounds more like a deep I4.

    Second, there is a lot of aftermarket support and swap options for the ej, the H6 will even mate up to the same tranny.

    Third, ej can rev to 9k pretty easily. The same engine revs to 8500 in Japan stock. We just get limited in US for some reason. Gas quality and octane I think.

    I’ll definately be getting the Toyo version of it. Subaru doesn’t need an AWD coupe. SVX 2.0?

  18. Alan said:

    THE 4AGE WAS A YAMAHA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    good god people Yamaha has built nearly every performance four cylinder Toyota has ever had, not to mention designing, engineering and building the 2000GT.

    I don’t hear people whining about the McLaren F1 having a BMW motor, or the Pagani being powered by a MB unit – this ultra hard line fanboyism is killing brain cells and needs to stop.

  19. Matt said:

    No complaints on this new WRX coupe from me at all! Choices are fantastic. If this has Toyota build quality, and WRX power, this thing will be a killer. My biggest problem with the 2002-2007(?) WRX/STI was the build quality. Closing the doors felt like beating up a tin can in sound and weight. Compared to the 2005+ Legacy, the WRX was a very chintzy car.

    But don’t get me wrong, I’m all for light weight, but quality light weight. I had an original AE86 and the build quality was great. Even at 200,000 miles it was a solid car. A (coupe!) with the the quality of a Toyota sounds great, like a proper car to go along with the Legacy/Outbacks that are just solid cars.

    I don’t think I’ll be in the market at $30k, but that is in the range of the other 300hp cars; Genesis, 370z, Camaro, Mustang, and a discount on the 300hp STIs and Evos. As for the basic Toyota FT-86, the car to beat in my mind is the $24000 Genesis Spec R. Come in at or below that price, with the sports equipment (LSD, Brembos, Sport Suspension) and you have a winner.

  20. smartyhead said:

    motors built by yamaha but not designed, get it right…

  21. GEN2TWINCAM said:

    I’ll check it out in 25 years or so…
    when it’s actually “Nostalgic”.

  22. burabuda said:


    I’ll check it out in 25 years or so…
    when it’s actually “Nostalgic”.

    amen to that … new cars are so out of date

  23. Kostamojen said:

    I’m a huge Subaru guy…

    …but I want the RWD non-turbo version.

  24. Alan said:

    Yamaha did design them, the heads of the performance versions anyway.

    Why would the largest car manufacturer in the world need to farm out for excess manufacturing capacity? I suggest you get it right.

  25. kingtoy said:

    Yamaha designed the heads for Toyota that is all, the engines were all Toyota.

    I have no problem with the way the FT-86 looks, looks like most modern Toyotas.

    The big problem I have with the FT-86 is that it is a bastardization. It has nothing to do with the boxer designed engine, just the fact it didn’t come from Toyota. If Toyota had designed the engine, fine I would accept it, but they didn’t Subaru did. The whole idea behind the FT-86 is great and I was so happy until the prototype hit, then I was destroyed. Just build the Subaru version and leave it at that. The Toyota version is just a waste of time now.

  26. bert said:

    @ Alan- They may be the largest car maker in the world, but Toyota still posted big losses in the last two years, and at some point had asked the Japanese government for a bail out. Subaru has not! The answer then in the car world is to join forces with someone who is financially stable and “farm out” your new vehicles.

  27. Alan said:


    I’m a fan of the Subaru motor in the FT86 – I was talking down the rabid “it sucks ’cause it’s not a toyota motor” fanboys.

    Kingtoy, motors don’t run without heads (arguably the most complex part of an engine) and without Yamaha designed ones the AE86 would have had a 70 HP 4A.

    People getting bent out of shape about the purity of a Porsche or a Ferrari I understand, but (and this is spoken as a big vintage j-tin fan and owner of several old yotas) with Toyota? They make appliances, who the hell cares about some imaginary pedigree?

  28. kingtoy said:

    Toyota bought a majority stake share in Subaru from GM. Thats why this is happening. Toyota owns Subie now, at least part of them.

    Yamaha designed the heads, they didn’t make them, Toyota did.

    And yes Alan… it does matter.

  29. Alan said:


    So if Toyota built the flat four, even though it’s a Subaru design, you’d be OK with it?

  30. bert said:

    @ Alan & Kingtoy………….Wow! I didn’t know what I was getting myself into with this debate! I was just trying to help people understand what a great time this is to finally see some of the biggest names in the car world bring some exciting products to the table. I think we can all agree that this car is going to be the start of some serious love/hate relationships! As for the issue of purity, car companies have been buying, selling, trading and losing other marks for years now. A lot of the cars we drive are going to have shared platforms with someone else’s technology in them………and I don’t see that changing in the near future.

  31. Lincoln Stax said:

    I have a real issue with purity. Purity is the greatest hindrance to innovation and creativity I know. When you talk about purity, you attempt to define the subject, make it smaller, limit it.

    If country and blues singers had kept it pure, we wouldn’t have gotten rock ‘n’ roll. If French painters 150 years ago had decided to keep the influence of Japanese woodblock painters out of their art, we wouldn’t have gotten the Impressionist movement.

    No, the FT-86 isn’t a “pure” Toyota. But what it has is the potential to be is one of the most exciting enthusiast cars to come out in several years. I’ll take that exciting impure FT-86 over all the dull but pure Toyotas we’ve been getting for the past 5 years.

  32. bert said:

    Lincoln Stax_hoorah!

  33. Alan said:

    Lincol_Stax the man!

  34. kingtoy said:

    Well you guys can keep that thing. I will stick with my vintage “True” Toyota.

    Toyota purist for life.

  35. Alan said:

    oh you mean the one with the Yamaha motor.

  36. kingtoy said:

    OK, one last time for those who don’t seem to read well. Yamaha “Designed” the head that’s all. They didn’t make the motors and they didn’t make the heads.

    And by the way, I am sure Yamamha didn’t have anything to do with the 20R, 22R, 2TC or 3TC……. those were big T all the way.

    One day you guys will see the FT-86 for what it is, a Subaru re-tread, thats all.

  37. Alan said:

    The 20R and 22R were also had Yamaha designed heads, and like I said – no heads no motor… the 1.6 4A had 70 HP.

    putting designed in quotes doesn’t change the fact that they’re not Toyota.

  38. kingtoy said:

    Well ok, if some dude named Hiroyoshi designed something for Toyota, are they his or Toyota’s

  39. Alan said:

    If he worked for Toyota? Toyotas. If he worked for Yamaha? Yamahas. What’s the difference between a Yamaha designed motor and a Subaru designed motor? It’s still a Toyota chassis. The 50% of Boxsters built by Valmet in Finland are still Porsches – they may be built by a different company but it’s who designed them that counts.

  40. kingtoy said:

    Thats my point exactly. The chassis is a modified WRX platform. The drivetrain we all know is plucked from the Subaru line-up. This car is an anomoly, nothing more.

    This car would not be what it is if Toyota hadn’t bought GM’s share in Subaru. Bottom line, Toyota saw a cheap short cut and took it.

    Like I have said. I have nothing against the car as it is, just don’t call it something it’s not. Was the FWD Chevy Nova a real Chevy or a rebodied Corolla, and what about the Geo Prism. Is the Pontiac Vibe a real Pontiac, or simply a re-bodied Matrix.

    This may end up as a really fun performance car, but I will go on record now. The core of Toyota enthusist will not accept this as a real Toyota.

    When this car fianlly drops I think it will make a loud thud in the faithful Toyota enthusist community.

  41. bert said:

    And the last word goes toooooo……………………….

  42. Alan said:

    bert of course!

  43. Sarcasmo said:

    Whoa, this thread actually got a SHITLOAD a responses.. chapters actually. 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *