TOKYO 2013: Toyota 86 Open Concept

THE on-again, off-again, will-they, won’t-they debate about a convertible Toyota 86 is predictably back on again after yet another drop-top concept was unveiled at the Tokyo Motor Show today.

The FT86 Open Concept features the steering wheel on the right-hand side for the first time. That can only be a good sign for local 86 fans, who have made Australia the third-largest 86 market in the world.

The concept is painted in Flash Red and gets an electronically operated roof and new sport seats, along with 19-inch wheels.

Toyota Australia executive director sales and marketing Tony Cramb said the concept car was created to test customer demand for a convertible model. “While reaction to the concept cars has been outstanding, our parent company is carefully assessing the business case, which is highly dependent on economic conditions in each region.

“A convertible would add another dimension to the drive pleasure derived from the 86 platform. We’ve certainly got our fingers crossed.”

The 86 has been an astounding success in Australia, selling more than 8000 cars in 18 months.

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