A long-awaited new Toyota rear-wheel-drive sports car has now been unveiled in its home market, Japan. Toyota newest sports car is officially known as Toyota 86 or “hachi roku”.
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The unveiling occurred when Toyota president Akio Toyoda drove a production prototype down the main straight of the Fuji Speedway, south of Tokyo.
Mr Toyoda said the new rear-wheel-drive sports car was all about “waku doki” – a car that creates excitement and gets your heart racing. “I am very proud of this car,” Mr Toyoda said. “Thank you for the patience of car lovers. They are going to enjoy this car.”
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Developed in close conjunction with Subaru, the new 2012 Toyota 86 features the world’s first horizontally opposed D-4S engine, combining “boxer” engine technology with Toyota’s cutting-edge D-4S direct injection technology. The engine is installed front mid-ship to create an ultra-low centre of gravity and low inertia. It is the world’s only horizontally opposed engine and rear-wheel-drive package.
The D-4S, with separate twin injectors for both direct injection and port injection, boasts a high compression ratio of 12.5:1. This provides high output and high torque over a wide range of engine speeds and contributes to improved environmental performance. The engine’s redline is 7500rpm with maximum output of 200PS (147kW) @ 6,800rpm and 205Nm of torque @ 6,600rpm. Even so, the engine achieves fuel efficiency and environmental performance that rivals that of a standard 2.0-litre sedan. The D-4S engine is mated with a 6-speed manual transmission or a special sports-driving 6-speed automatic transmission.
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As a result, the 86 offers fun driving at a level unprecedented in earlier sports cars. It carries on the spirit of the AE86 Corolla in its aim to be a car that evolves with its owner.
The lightweight 2+2 configuration rear-wheel-drive platform was designed to achieve superior handling and create the world’s smallest mass-production four-passenger sports car (by volume). The foldable rear seats create a luggage space that can accommodate four spare wheels or two sets of golf clubs.
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The interior design seeks the real meaning of sports cars by emphasising the form, placement and materials of each element. The seatbacks and cushion surfaces are designed to provide support during acceleration G-forces from the front, the back and to the sides. In addition, the shape of the front seats is designed to prevent elbows from interfering with gearshift operation.
The circular steering wheel has a diameter of 365 mm, the smallest in a Toyota-brand vehicle. The wheel’s surface was optimised with exhaustive feedback from test drivers to enhance steering performance and grip.
A three-cluster meter built around the tachometer has been designed with particular attention paid to display placement, markings and typeface to enhance visibility and readability during sports driving.
The Toyota 86 will be launched in Australia by mid-2012. In the other hand, we hope that UMW Toyota will be introducing this model in Malaysia too. Meantime, let’s check out the photos & videos after the jump.
Photo Gallery: Toyota 86[nggallery id=413]