This week features an old import icon. From the streets of Tokyo in Initial D to the tracks of Formula D, and probably Need For Speed: Underground 2, comes a Toyota. More specifically, the AE86 Corolla. A RWD, 2 door coupe or 3 door hatch back, Corolla that was a more performance oriented vehicle. So some modifications and you got a pretty nasty sports car.
For its time, it was pretty cool and sporty but nowadays, it’s not enough to bang with today’s sports cars. Luckily, I’ve figured out how to make this come alive for today’s market. There’s two questions however. How can they make this and what about the FR-S? It will all be explained momentarily.
First of all, the AE86 Resurection would require an FR-S. More specifically, a shooting brake style. The reason being is that, the AE86 hatchbacks are more known and loved than the coupe versions. All Toyota would need to do is design a 3-door version of the FR-S and boost the engine. 300HP from the factory anybody? A single, maybe twin, turbo version of the engine it has would work. Maybe the 3.5L V6 from SE Camry. 268HP is a huge jump from the FR-Ss standard 200. A few badges and other accents to show of the AE86 heritage, and maybe name it, the FR-S GT-S, Trueno or SR5 would bring it all together. There is one slight issue however.
I don’t know what Toyota’s strategy for Scion is anymore. When Scion was introduced, the purpose was to offer cars with many customizable options from the factory from interior accent lighting to light performance add-ons. Nowadays, it seems as thought Scion has moved further upmarket, and the edge and “cool” factor has left. In my honest opinion, Scion should have been axed a few years ago and the xD, tC, and FR-S should have been Toyota’s. The xD would be a Yaris 5, the tC a Celica and the FR-S a GT86. Of course in my world, there also wouldn’t be a new set of hosts of Top Gear also.
Why? Just because…just playing. It would be a nice entry into the emerging hot-hatch market here in the US. Reviving an old name plate with updated technology can prove to be winning combination. The FR-S in its current state is good, but we want better.
Well, that was a slightly horrible reason. Here’s a better one. Ive seen, upon a few moments of thrilling research, Honda is planning to bring its Civic Hatchback, back to America. That could mean Si…maybe even the rumoured Type-R. If that’s not enough reason, what other reason is there?
Engines? Single turbo FR-S 2.0L engine or the Camry SE 3.5. We don’t need extreme horsepower, although that would be kind of cool, we just need enough to get some more speed. but if Toyota wants to give us more we will gladly accept it.
What we really want? A turbo version. Just saying… Other than that, we would want the car itself.
Case and Point… I think the AE86 would be a welcome jewel in the Toyota family line-up. Don’t get me wrong, I like the FR-S but it wouldn’t be enough to compete with newer more powerful cars. With the Type-R being rumoured to come to American shores, as well as a Civic hatch, something from Toyota needs to be able to give it a run for its money. I see a new import war brewing. Maybe this time, the cars will stick around for a little longer.