Subaru again rolled out its upcoming rear-wheel-drive sports car, now called the BRZ Prologue in conceptual-skeleton form at the 2011 Frankfurt Auto Show. But with the additional look, a few new details trickled out in Subaru's latest release and remarks.
Under the hood will be a 2.0-liter direct-injection horizontally opposed ('boxer,' or 'flat') four-cylinder engine, code-named 'FA' and unique to this model. And while Subaru still hasn't released an official output, it's expected to be significantly higher--likely around 200 horsepower--compared to the 2.0-liter that's new this year to the Impreza. That will be matched to a six-speed manual or six-speed automatic, driving the rear wheels.
We knew that much, Now, Subaru has also revealed that the BRZ's body will be 165.3 inches long, 69.7 inches wide, and just 50 inches high, with a wheelbase of 101.2 in.
The automaker also extols the BRZ's "Pure Handling Delight" driving dynamics. Fundamentally, it's a pretty conventional—albeit neat and low—layout, with struts in front and a double-wishbone setup in back. Short front and rear overhangs help reduce yaw moments of inertia, Subaru says, to aid handling, and the low boxer engine is positioned nearly five inches lower than in other Subaru models and about 9.4 inches closer to the vehicle's chassis center. Subaru president Yasuyuki Yoshinaga, actually called it the lowest center of gravity in a production car--about 450 mm in fact.
The BRZ, Yoshinaga said, will also mark the introduction of a new pedestrian-detection system that, like Volvo's City Safety system, will be able to apply the brakes to avoid a potential collision.
Browse our pictures, direct from the Frankfurt show floor, for a closer look—but expect to see a lot more about this sports coupe soon. A production model of the Subaru BRZ is due next month at the Tokyo Auto Show; then production will start in spring 2012, with a Toyota version on the way, to be called the Scion FR-S in the U.S. And affordability will be a key selling point; both versions are still expected to ring in at less than $30k.