Jumat, 20 Januari 2017

The revised Subaru BRZ in the winter test


It sometimes lives well in the niche: the all-wheel specialists of Subaru even openly and still celebrate. For the first time, one million vehicles have been sold annually, especially the United States like Subaru. At the same time, the new Impreza was voted "Auto of the Year" in Japan. But until it comes (probably in summer 2017) also to us, it looks with real novelties of the brand rather mau. As consoling plaster, there is a facelift of the BRZ offered since 2012. Reason enough to feel the only subaru without all-wheel drive on the tooth.

Flat zenith
The 4.24-meter-long sports car is based on a collaboration between Subaru and Toyota. There the GT to the GT86 and gets also an overwork. It is to boost the very manageable sales figures of both cars in Germany. In the year 2016 only 299 GT86 were brought to the man, the BRZ is not even listed independently and appears under the 73 "other" Subaru. By the way, the name BRZ points to the technical concept: boxer motor plus rear wheel drive. The Z stands for the "zenith" in the pass. So do we have to deal with a completely underestimated fun grenade?

Cayman of the little man
The two-liter Boxer with 200 hp developed by Subaru still represents the now rare school of the suction engine. The maximum 205 newton meters of torque are available only between 6,400 and 6,600 tours. No bang so, but the high running time convinces in everyday life. Above 4,000 revolutions a sound generator flatters the ears. And even if the engine is mounted at the front in the direction of the driver, one would say: Here comes the Porsche Cayman of the small man. Modified for 2017 were the spring rates and the shock absorbers, at the same time the rear stabilizer was strengthened.

New look
Let us focus on the changes to the BRZ: New are standard LED headlights, a modified front apron as well as taillights with LED technology. Added to this are 17-inch alu in the new ten-spoke design. The interior is not exactly high-quality. Both the door panels and the dashboard receive new materials, some with red contrast seams. In addition, the leather and Alcantara sports seats with the BRZ logo and heating are on board. The two analogue instruments are joined by a 4.2 inch LCD screen. It contains not only the tank clock, but a stopwatch or a G-monitor, depending on the interest, to display the longitudinal and transverse acceleration. The leather steering wheel became somewhat more compact and now has operating buttons. Who selects the automatic gearbox, additionally gets shuttles to the valance clamped.

Watch out while touching
But as nice as the new multi-function steering wheel may be, at the latest when drifting reveals its disadvantages: In the case of strong and fast steering work, the fingers catch a button once and activate, for example, inadvertently the voice input. The latter is part of the Starlink system from Subaru, which is located on the now 6.2 inch measuring touchscreen and also integrates the smartphone.

First of all, however, the driver has to be integrated into the GT. The seat position is low as the center of gravity of the vehicle, so that you can pump into the well-contoured seat. After that, however, you feel perfectly integrated into the cockpit. The rear view shows the now standard rear spoiler (helpful for parking) and rear seats, which can be viewed as an additional shelf. If the backrests are folded, the luggage compartment expands from 243 to 330 liters.

Dance on the snow
But whoever attaches to a Subaru BRZ does not make this for practical reasons. Shape and passport are the two really important F-words. The final point is particularly evident in the Finnish snow: depending on the mode set, the GT is literally drifting according to drifts. In between, the VDC called stability program now has four modes: The two-stage Sport mode has been combined to a track mode. It allows for easy overrunning with dedicated cornering, but also allows race-like starts. This means that even less drift-minded people can approach the art of the cross-way, in case of doubt, the VDC just throws the anchor in time. In general, the BRZ can be easily persuaded to drift. In the ultimate mode without VDC and deactivated differential lock (only for the manual gearbox) much work is required on the steering wheel. The rear of the Subaru wags quite quickly, and a master of the accelerator needs a nice circle.

No cheap pleasure
Unfortunately, the pricing of the BRZ drifts very neatly: starting at 32,400 euros, who would prefer a six-speed automatic, pays 1,550 euros additionally. Of course, the BRZ is very well equipped in its latest version, including a two-zone climate control system. But do you need all that for pure, unadulterated fun? At Toyota one is different view and offers the identical GT86 with less luxury already for 29.990 euro. And even then it will not be easy for both models, because the brand new Mazda MX-5 RF is available from 29.890 euros. He has "only" 160 hp under the hood, but can also be driven open.