YEP, you’ll see this one coming in the rear-view mirror at your next track day.
Toyota has lifted the lid on an orange-hued, manual-only version of its strong-selling 86 four-seat coupe – but only 60 of them will be sold down-under.
It’s a long way away from the recently revealed, closely related, be-winged Subaru BRZ tS that’s destined for US showrooms. Toyota’s tweaks for the 86 don’t offer much in the way of cosmetic enhancement over a normal 86, with only an eye-searing (and wallet-stinging) $4550 orange paint job the only exterior change - but this one is about more than just wings and stickers.
Priced from $41,490, just 60 of the Solar Orange 86s will land here. Each will ride on Sachs high-performance dampers pinched from the 86’s European-market options list.
There’s also a set of distinctly beefier vented brakes, which step up to 326mm x 30mm discs wrapped in four-piston Brembo calipers at the front (up by 32mm and 6mm respectively) and fitted with 75-square-centimetre pads that are almost half as big again as the default ones. Down the back, there are 316mm x 20mm rotors clamped by two-piston calipers (up 16mm and 2mm respectively) with slightly larger 32-square-centimetre pads.
However, despite the extra cornering and stopping prowess, the limited-run 86 wears the same Michelin Primacy rubber as the 86 GT on which it is based; something we’ve found is a limiting factor in the current model that will dissolve into mild understeer unless it is forced into wagging its tail.
Don’t bother looking under the bonnet, as the hachi-roku-orenji uses the same 152kW/212 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine fitted to the six-speed manual 86 GT.
Offsetting all that orange are blacked-out highlights on the spoiler and door mirror caps, and dark grey 10-spoke 17-inch alloy wheels.
Despite a recent upgrade that included minor under-bonnet tweaks, the Toyota 86 has struggled a bit since its Stars-and-Stripes sportscar nemesis, the bigger, brasher and somewhat more expensive Ford Mustang, arrived on the Australian market more than a year and a half ago.
So far this year, Ford has sold almost 3800 four-pot and V8-engined Mustangs compared with just 820-odd 86s.