Toyota GR86 to go back on sale in UK

Toyota anticipates the new batch of GR86s will be another sell-out

The GR86 is back with Toyota announcing that a fresh allocation of the sporty coupe will come to the UK. 

There aren’t too many affordable two-door, rear-wheel drive sports cars on the market and with Toyota’s GR brand introducing the long-awaited Supra and the excellent GR Yaris, it was no surprise that the GT86’s successor sold out in 90 minutes when it first went on sale here in 2022. 

Pricing for the GR86 was £29,995 a year ago but, like just about everything else in the UK, its gone up and buyers will be asked to pay £32,495 for the new allocation. Toyota says there will be an “online purchasing process designed to ensure that those who signed up for the waiting list, in chronological order, have the first chance to buy”. The date when the GR86 will go back on sale is yet to be announced.

Should customers wish to get their hands on a manual, rear-wheel drive GR-badged Toyota this year, then the recent launch of the manual Supra may come as some comfort. 

Back to the GR86, we expect the specification not to change over the 2022 model, featuring standard 18-inch black alloy wheels wrapped in Michelin Pilot Sport 4 tyres, adaptive LED headlights, auto-folding mirrors and a reversing camera.

Inside, you’ll find heated seats, dual-zone climate control, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto connectivity, and leather/Ultrasuede upholstery as standard. Factory-fitted safety features include autonomous emergency braking, adaptive cruise control and lane-keeping assistance. 

Just like its predecessor, the GR86 is the fruit of Toyota’s partnership with Subaru, sharing the same platform and engine as the recently refreshed Subaru BRZ. Toyota claims it has “engaged in a friendly rivalry” with Subaru to develop two new sports cars with distinct characters.

The Toyota GR86 is powered by a naturally aspirated 2.4-litre flat-four “boxer” engine, which replaces the 2.0-litre unit found in the old car. European specs are yet to be confirmed, but the Japanese version of the car produces 232bhp and 250Nm of torque.

That’s 35bhp and 45Nm more than its predecessor, the GT86, which means the GR86 will get from 0–62mph in 6.3 seconds, or 1.1 seconds faster than the old car. These figures could change once the car is away from Toyota’s home market, though.

As standard, the new engine will be mated to a six-speed manual gearbox, with an optional six-speed automatic transmission.. Both send drive to the rear wheels through a limited-slip differential.

The GR86 is built on the same basic platform as the GT86, which means it retains the same proportions as its predecessor. However, Toyota is keen to stress that the shell has been upgraded with more strengthening panels and stronger bonding techniques, which improve the chassis’s stiffness and sharpen up the handling.

Torsional rigidity is up by 50 per cent as a result and, thanks to some new aluminium body panels, the whole car tips the scales at just 1,270kg. Toyota claims the GR86 is the lightest four-seat coupe in its class.

The “GR” in the coupe’s name stands for Gazoo Racing. It’s Toyota’s in-house tuning division, which has helped hone cars like the GR Supra and the GR Yaris hot hatchback, so it’s no surprise that the tuners have also had a hand in the GR86’s chassis development.

The car’s styling mostly matches that of the Subaru BRZ, sharing its headlamps, daytime running lights and smooth front end surfacing. However, Toyota has managed to place some distance between its sports car and Subaru’s offering by fitting a new front apron with a large rectangular air intake, compared to the BRZ’s more angular detailing.

The GT86’s gently sculpted roof remains, while at the rear the chunky bumper houses a new diffuser element and a twin-exit exhaust. As with the BRZ, the GR86’s bonnet, front wings and roof are made from lightweight aluminium.

Inside, Toyota has fitted its new compact sports car with much more technology, including a seven-inch digital gauge cluster and an eight-inch touchscreen infotainment system, as part of a thorough redesign of the centre console and dashboard.

Automatic versions of the GR86 will also be available with Subaru-developed EyeSight driver assistance technology. Making use of a forward-facing camera setup, this provides pre-collision avoidance support. 

Check out the best sports cars on sale now…

Senior news reporter

A keen petrol-head, Alastair Crooks has a degree in journalism and worked as a car salesman for a variety of manufacturers before joining Auto Express in Spring 2019 as a Content Editor. Now, as our senior news reporter, his daily duties involve tracking down the latest news and writing reviews.

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