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- ONE front-engine, rear drive 2+2 coupe sports car that won't break the bank and can drift with the best of them.
- ONE Hot Lava 2014 Scion FR-S (Front engine, Rear-wheel drive - Sport)
- by Toyota, in a nod to the AE86 Corolla GT-S, hence the GT86 model name outside North America.
- by Subaru, whose parent, Fuji Heavy Industries, happens to be 16.5% owned by Toyota. Subaru also makes a BRZ version.
Donated by Toyota:
- 2000GT shape, as in long hood with raked windscreen, and fastback roof-line. Though the 2000GT followed the Jaguar E-Type it emulated, the FR-S pre-dates the current Jag F-Type.
- Front fender, opposed piston "86" emblems
- 6-speed fully synchronized manual transmission by 30% Toyota-owned Aisin Seiki.
- Torsen limited slip rear-differential
- Toyota D-4S 8 fuel injector Direct + Sequential Fuel Injection systems. Denoted in Subaru FA20D engine model.
- Selectable slip-control modes
Made by Subie:
- Final assembly at Subaru's Gunma, Japan main plant next to Subaru BR-Z/ Toyota GT86 sister cars, and the Impreza.
- "Subaru" is pressed throughout the edges of ventral body panels.
- 2.0L twin-cam gas flat-four (boxer) engine with Subaru variable valve timing. Pistons reciprocating horizontally places more engine mass closer to the ground.
- Sound made by horizontally pumping pistons is invigorating.
- Lower center of gravity requires less suspension travel, permitting greater flexibility for softer rebound with stiffer (lower) springs.
Hot Lava Flows:
- For a naturally aspirated Otto engine, it's amazing how much torque is always one down-shift away. Mazda's MX-5 "Miata" might have the shorter gear-lever throw you couldn't blow a shift in Scion FR-S even if you tried. The clutch disengages closer to the bottom of the reasonably light pedal travel, making for swift two-step.
- Nebraska flat body motions cope with understeer in the FR-S. Permeating corners with opposite lock butt first may be hairier than in the MX-5, but it's also more fun.
- Column mounted electric steering assist makes for a light helm, the better to go with the fast manual rack. Brakes, nothing exotic, respond aptly to a good heel-to-toe thrashing.
- Body hugging front buckets aren't for the wider of hip or shoulder, yet possess road-trip tolerable cushion. Velour cloth coverings this grippy double as lint magnets. Less useful are loop fabric seat belt locators.
- A properly thick, leather wrapped tilt steering wheel tilts slightly and barely telescopes. These days it looks naked bearing no entertainment switches. (Toyota insists on a column mounted cruise control stalk.)
- Dash-top is pliable, contrasting red stitching adorns seats, steering wheel and center stack partition. All pedals, living and dead, and rocker panel are covered in dimpled aluminum.
- Creaks are rare, wind or road noise sufficiently muted convey a tight build to the Scion FR-S.
- 300 watt Pioneer sound system w/ HD Radio and Bluetooth phone + streaming USB audio are standard. Scion throws in a low-resolution, small icon 6.1" LCD touch display. Bespoke Audio navigation + infotainment apps by A-Ha, is a dealer-installed option.
✔ For a car so light the doors are so heavy. ✔ Minimal door, glove box and and only barely better center console storage. ✔ Some switchgear and vent grilles look so Corolla basic. ✔ Why bother with the analog speedo to the left of the center tachometer containing its own LED speed display? ✔ Back seat is a "Ciabatta Box"; the trunk a "Quatre Baguette Box". Saving grace: the seat back folds.
Peanut Butter Cup:
Our Hot Lava 2014 Scion FR-S tester, with must-have TRD cat-back exhaust, pipes in at very reasonable $27,534! After our final drift session in the sweet FR-S, "Drive...He Said" agrees with H.B. Reese that great tastes can derive from the unlikeliest of collaborations.
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Tags: 2+2, 2014 Scion FR-S review, boxer engine, Chevrolet Camaro competitor, flat-four, Ford Mustang competitor, FR-S, FRS, GT86, Hyundai Genesis coupe competitor, image gallery, Mazda MX-5 competitor, Rear-Wheel Drive, review, Scion, Scion FR-S, Sports Car, Subaru, Subaru BRZ competitor, Toyota, Toyota GT86