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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
GT86Owner’s Toyota GT86 Test Drive Review <?: prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><O:p></O:p>
Hi all,
Well I thought it might be a good idea to have a section where people can post their reviews and thoughts from test driving the GT86.
<O:p></O:p>
My dealer has been kind enough to let me test drive the car twice. The first time I drove it for about 30 minutes with a sales rep, but the second time they let my Mrs and I take it for a couple of hours, so I managed to rack up quite a few miles in it!
<O:p></O:p>
Only a couple of weeks ago I was driving a Porsche 911 GT2 and a Ferrari F430 around a race track so I hope I can give a balanced review.
<O:p></O:p>
Here are my thoughts:
<O:p></O:p>
<B style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal">Ride and Handling<O:p></O:p>[/B]
The first thing that struck me when I got into the GT86 was the driving position; nice and low and the dash comes straight at you much like car used to be rather than bubble like modern cars. This of course, is a sports car so it is to be expected but very nice non-the-less and much better than any of the competition. In fact it felt very close to the Ferrari F430.
<O:p></O:p>
As I pulled out of the garage the first thing I noticed was the feel of the steering; very nicely weighted and direct and the car responds very quickly to the sightless of input to the steering. Lovely.
<O:p></O:p>
The handling is a delight, wonderfully balanced with tons of grip. I don’t care what the jargon says, the skid pan is 0.99g which is more than an M3 and you can feel it! In the dry you will not be able to get this car sideways for very long outside of 1st gear. Just a slight bit of body roll but I am just nit picking really.
<O:p></O:p>
Naturally the ride was firm. I found it very firm indeed but the excellent seats take the edge off the big bumps wonderfully. Smaller bumps such as those you might find approaching a roundabout telling you to slow down where nicely damped. On a good motorway surface at 80MPH it is fine, but on rougher surfaces you do feel quite a bit of the roughness. Overall I would say for a sports car with such excellent handling, it’s what you should expect. 9/10<O:p></O:p>
<O:p></O:p>
<B style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal">Performance<O:p></O:p>[/B]
I didn’t feel like the car lacked power at lower revs, like some people have been saying. In 3rd gear, for example, it felt like it pulled equally as hard at 3000rpm as it did at 6000rpm. Yes if you want maximum power you need to rev it hard, but it still pulls well at lower revs. In modern turbo charged engines they do tend to have a lot of torque at lower revs, but that torque rolls off at higher revs, which does make the car easier to drive but I actually didn’t like that about the Audi TT because it felt like it was losing power as you revved it to the last 5000-6500rpms.
The chassis could handle more power but 200hp is more than enough to enjoy this car on the twisties. I still had trouble keeping to legal speed limits!
<O:p></O:p>
The gearbox is fantastic. I read somewhere that they had an engineer on the project whose sole job was “gearbox feel”. If this is true, it definitely shows. Loved Loved Loved the gearbox and the clutch worked so well with it. 9/10
<O:p></O:p>
<O:p>
<B style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal">Refinement<O:p></O:p>[/B]
Road noise is probably the worst part of this car and it is very sensitive to the surface quality. The Engine is ever so slightly audible on rough surfaces and quite clear on smooth roads. Not noisy or raspy, you can just hear it purring away. I didn’t mind it at all. <B style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal"><O:p></O:p>[/B]
If you do decide to put your boot down, you are met with a lovely growl, slightly raspy but I liked it a lot. It felt like Toyota/Subaru put some effort into making the engine sound nice and 10X better than an Audi/VW with the 2.0TFSI engine.
At 80MPH on smooth tarmac I could not hear very much wind noise at all as road/engine noise dominated.
<O:p></O:p>
Having criticised the road noise I do understand that it is all down to keeping weight to a minimum (no sound deadening for example), but for me it was a little bit too much noise on rougher surfaces. 7/10
<O:p></O:p>
<B style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal">Quality<O:p></O:p>[/B]
Interior quality was pretty good. Not up to Audi standards but good considering the extra cost involved in making a car like this. My wife did not like the carbon effect trim but I didn’t mind it. The soft touch dash was very nice and the whole thing felt solid; we did agree that it feels better than it looks.
The leather was nice, not too soft but hard wearing which leads me on the EXCELLENT seats. I’m quite a big chap and they hugged me well without feeling too uncomfortable. The seats also helped damp out some of the bumps.
It would have been nice to see the grey plastic around the gearstick and controls to be real metal (and the same for the bolt head controls) but it’s ok. 8/10
<O:p></O:p>
<B style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal">Equipment<O:p></O:p>[/B]
The car has all the bells and whistles. Controls were easy to use and felt nice. I love the dual zone climate control layout.
Mats were pinned nicely in place so they don’t move around too much when you get in or out.
The touch was easy enough to use but sorry to say the sound system is rubbish. 7/10










<B style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal">Conclusion<O:p></O:p>[/B]

So there you have it. I suggest you buy one if you haven’t already. Exceeded my expectations 9/10<O:p></O:p>






</O:p>


P.s. The rear badge was missing
Edited by: GT86Owner
 

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Great review thanks for that, concerned whether I should upgarde the sound system now though after your comments on it being bad
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I would suggest taking your prefered music source and give it a try. For me it was a let down for sure. Seems like so many car manufacturers are going this way.
 

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Didnt try the sound system, so a bit dissapointed from what you say because totally agree with the rest. Fabulous car
 

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Not going to go into great detail from my drive today beacuse GT86Owner has pretty much nailed it (and Ive never driven a Ferrari!!). My overriding feeling driving this beauty was that I just felt part of the car. Nothing was an effort but at the same time exhillarating. I didnt have to spent an hour familiarising myself with all the controls. They were where they should be, and close. I could just spend the time soaking up the great handling, the nicely understated Subaru hum, the great all round vision, the amazing lack of slip, roll, slide in the best car seats i've sat in (like I say, never done supercars). Just want mine yesterday. Oh .. and how cool is the rear view mirror? Little thing but unique in my experience
 

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Nice review dude. I test drove one the otherday and had a quick play with the sound system, it was ok but we were playing at low levels and not loud or while driving. I ordered mine and spec'd the JBL sound system but don't actually know much about it, anyone know if this was a good idea or not? Anyone know what the JBL system is and if its any good or not?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Keethos said:
Nice review dude. I test drove one the otherday and had a quick play with the sound system, it was ok but we were playing at low levels and not loud or while driving. I ordered mine and spec'd the JBL sound system but don't actually know much about it, anyone know if this was a good idea or not? Anyone know what the JBL system is and if its any good or not?
Hi Keethos,

Thanks. The guys on the Toyota owners club forums that had a similar JBL systems fitted to other Toyotas seem to like it. There are some discussions on the GT86 JBL system and other extras here:
http://www.gt86ownersclub.co.uk/forum/toyota-gt86-optional-extras_topic147.html



Edited by: GT86Owner
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
GT86Owner said:
GT86Owner’s Toyota GT86 Test Drive Review </font>
Hi all,</font>
Well I thought it might be a good idea to have a section where people can post their reviews and thoughts from test driving the GT86.</font>
</font>
My dealer has been kind enough to let me test drive the car twice. The first time I drove it for about 30 minutes with a sales rep, but the second time they let my Mrs and I take it for a couple of hours, so I managed to rack up quite a few miles in it!</font>
</font>
Only a couple of weeks ago I was driving a Porsche 911 GT2 and a Ferrari F430 around a race track so I hope I can give a balanced review.</font>
</font>
Here are my thoughts:</font>
</font>
<b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal">Ride and Handling</font>[/b]
The first thing that struck me when I got into the GT86 was the driving position; nice and low and the dash comes straight at you much like car used to be rather than bubble like modern cars. This of course, is a sports car so it is to be expected but very nice non-the-less and much better than any of the competition. In fact it felt very close to the Ferrari F430. </font>
</font>
As I pulled out of the garage the first thing I noticed was the feel of the steering; very nicely weighted and direct and the car responds very quickly to the sightless of input to the steering. Lovely.</font>
</font>
The handling is a delight, wonderfully balanced with tons of grip. I don’t care what the jargon says, the skid pan is 0.99g which is more than an M3 and you can feel it! In the dry you will not be able to get this car sideways for very long outside of 1st gear. Just a slight bit of body roll but I am just nit picking really. </font>
</font>
Naturally the ride was firm. I found it very firm indeed but the excellent seats take the edge off the big bumps wonderfully. Smaller bumps such as those you might find approaching a roundabout telling you to slow down where nicely damped. On a good motorway surface at 80MPH it is fine, but on rougher surfaces you do feel quite a bit of the roughness. Overall I would say for a sports car with such excellent handling, it’s what you should expect. 9/10</font></font>
</font>
<b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal">Performance</font>[/b]
I didn’t feel like the car lacked power at lower revs, like some people have been saying. In 3rd gear, for example, it felt like it pulled equally as hard at 3000rpm as it did at 6000rpm. Yes if you want maximum power you need to rev it hard, but it still pulls well at lower revs. In modern turbo charged engines they do tend to have a lot of torque at lower revs, but that torque rolls off at higher revs, which does make the car easier to drive but I actually didn’t like that about the Audi TT because it felt like it was losing power as you revved it to the last 5000-6500rpms.</font>
The chassis could handle more power but 200hp is more than enough to enjoy this car on the twisties. I still had trouble keeping to legal speed limits! </font>
</font>
The gearbox is fantastic. I read somewhere that they had an engineer on the project whose sole job was “gearbox feel”. If this is true, it definitely shows. Loved Loved Loved the gearbox and the clutch worked so well with it. 9/10</font>
</font>
</font></font>
<b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal">Refinement[/b]
Road noise is probably the worst part of this car and it is very sensitive to the surface quality. The Engine is ever so slightly audible on rough surfaces and quite clear on smooth roads. Not noisy or raspy, you can just hear it purring away. I didn’t mind it at all. <b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal">[/b]</font>
If you do decide to put your boot down, you are met with a lovely growl, slightly raspy but I liked it a lot. It felt like Toyota/Subaru put some effort into making the engine sound nice and 10X better than an Audi/VW with the 2.0TFSI engine.</font>
At 80MPH on smooth tarmac I could not hear very much wind noise at all as road/engine noise dominated. </font>
</font>
Having criticised the road noise I do understand that it is all down to keeping weight to a minimum (no sound deadening for example), but for me it was a little bit too much noise on rougher surfaces. 7/10</font>

<b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal">Quality[/b]
Interior quality was pretty good. Not up to Audi standards but good considering the extra cost involved in making a car like this. My wife did not like the carbon effect trim but I didn’t mind it. The soft touch dash was very nice and the whole thing felt solid; we did agree that it feels better than it looks.</font>
The leather was nice, not too soft but hard wearing which leads me on the EXCELLENT seats. I’m quite a big chap and they hugged me well without feeling too uncomfortable. The seats also helped damp out some of the bumps.</font>
It would have been nice to see the grey plastic around the gearstick and controls to be real metal (and the same for the bolt head controls) but it’s ok. 8/10</font>
</font>
<b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal">Equipment[/b]
The car has all the bells and whistles. Controls were easy to use and felt nice. I love the dual zone climate control layout. </font>
Mats were pinned nicely in place so they don’t move around too much when you get in or out. </font>
The touch was easy enough to use but sorry to say the sound system is rubbish. 7/10</font>
*edit the Sat Nav is a different unit so might be better, but doubtful.










<b style="mso-bidi-font-weight: normal">Conclusion[/b]

So there you have it. I suggest you buy one if you haven’t already. Exceeded my expectations 9/10



</font>

</font>

</font></font>


P.s. The rear badge was missing
 

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Had a test drive on Friday, sadly being only 22 I had to have a sales rep come along with me but she wasn't annoying and let me get on with it. I'm currently driving an RX-8 so my comparisons are mostly based around that.

At a basic level I'd say it felt like a smaller better version of the RX-8. The steering has excellent weight and feel to it which is something I haven't found in many other cars I've driven. The driving position is wonderfully low to the ground which I love; I hate cars where you sit high up, it feels really unstable to me. The pedals have good weight and feel as well as being well placed with a nice amount of travel, it felt similar to the RX-8 again. The engine has a nice feel to it although I didn't get much chance to put it through it's paces; the growl when you fully explore a gear is great (noticed they'd fitted a change light as well). The ride is about right for the car, firm but not crashy. The gear change is well weighted and smooth with a nice short throw (the change in the RX-8 feels a little stubborn at times but that might just be my car...).


I didn't try the stereo out but the unit looks nice at least and I still love the switch gear.


My only real criticism would be that it felt a bit dark in the cabin with the dark headlining, the light coloured headlining in the RX-8 makes a massive difference to this. I think having the red seats might help brighten it up a bit but it is still quite a dark place to be.


I really want one now...
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I just had a quick go in a work colleagues Audi TT 1.8T 225PS Quattro. In terms of straight line performance, it was very similar and cirtainly not quicker than the GT86. Perhaps the 4WD helps with a quicker launch, but the apparent 0-60 in 6.4Sec doesnt feel any fast than the GT86 apparent 7.6Sec.

In terms of handling. Not a sausage on the GT86. But to be expected on a 10 yr old car that wasnt regarded as excellent handling in its day.
 

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In all honesty I am not taking too much notice of the performance figures.

1) Testers have rarely mentioned the car mileage which has an effect and the GT86 engine may be initially tight.
2) The Prius tyres are reasonably low grip and will not hold up well to standing starts. The 30-70 time is much better.
3) I did not buy this car for its straight line performance.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
DavidGT86 said:
In all honesty I am not taking too much notice of the performance figures.

1) Testers have rarely mentioned the car mileage which has an effect and the GT86 engine may be initially tigh
2) The Prius tyres are reasonably low grip and will not hold up well to standing starts. The 30-70 time is much better.
3) I did not buy this car for its straight line performance.
My beef is only with the review where people winged it doesnt go well enough. It's not a Megane 260 but its similar to a golf/TT/Rocco
 

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For me it didn't feel as slow as the figures suggested from the Autocar test. It felt a lot closer to 7 secs to 60 than 7.6 but I am not bothered.Feel is what this car is all about and it felt great!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
DavidGT86 said:
For me it didn't feel as slow as the figures suggested from the Autocar test. It felt a lot closer to 7 secs to 60 than 7.6 but I am not bothered.Feel is what this car is all about and it felt great!
Toyota europe quoted 6.9s 0-100KMh:



alos a guy in the US did a 1/4 mile drag at 14.78sec (car on the left):


I still think Toyota europe have understated the 0-62MPH for insurance reasons to make the car a lower number than some of its competitors. Also using what fuel RON95 or RON99?.... RON99 will give ~5% more power


Edited by: GT86Owner
 

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My GT86 test drive. Toyota Cambridge weren't up for a long test drive so I only got a short try out on the twisty bits on Cambridge's only hill. I currently have a Celica T Sport so ths is basically a comparison with this.

Initial impression of the cabin was good, the seat was comfortable a bit harder than the Celcas but that may just be age. Controls fell to hand and all felt strong enough to survive use. I didn't like the speedo the numbers are to small, but since there is also a digital display which is easy to read its not a problem. The tachometer was better but still the numbers were a bit small.

On the go around town, steering is a little heavier than the Celcas and felt very slightly remote by comparison. The engine clearly had more torque than the Celica but didn't seem to rev as easly. It suspensions is a little harder but again that could be the age of the Celica it's slightly quieter but the Celica is not a quite car.

Once out in the back roads the rear wheel balance could clearly be felt the car turned in well and felt nicely balanced, the weight could be transferred from front to back in a way you just can't achieve in the Celica. I coulnt really test what it's like at the limit on the road as it was to busy. I didn't feel the turn in was quite as good as the Celica but the Celica is on brand new Pirrelie Nero Zeros whic have transformed it, so it would probably be as good or better on more sports oriented tyres. The engine seemed to lack mid range power and it was geared higher than the Celica so didn't rev as easly.

Unfortunately for me practical limitations will probably mean I stick with the Celica, not being a hatch back significantly limits the load size, and whilst the GT86 is better it is not that much better. It's rear seats are even more useless than the Celicas. It doesn't have the mad acceleration at the top end of the VTL engine which is quite adictive and I found the pedal arrangement didn't allow me to heal and toe it.( although I have read reviews of people who seemed to be able to.)

So in summary I can heartily recommend this car it would clearly be a lot of fun. If I didn't have the Celica and need the load space I would seriously consider buying one. I personally feel like the tyres let it down a bit but this was only boarder line and might simply be my familiarity with the Celica.

Regards,
Andrew
 

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Interesting review Andrew - I also drove Cambridge's demonstrator (the burnt orange one?).

The comparison with the Celica is instructive - admittedly it's a long time since I drove a TSport, but from memory I agree that it seemed smoother and had more oomph at the top end than the GT86.


Did you find that the demonstrator had a loud buzzing/vibration that suddenly kicked in after 5k rpm or so? The BRZ I tried didn't do it, so it must just be a problem with the demonstrator.

Edited by: gar074
 

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I didn't notice any buzzing and I gave it enough to get past 5k. Perhaps they fixed it or maybee I just didn't notice.

Regards,
Andrew
 

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Right first post here!

I went out for a test drive in a lovely dark grey manual '86 onFridayafternoon at the Llandudno Junction Toyota in north wales.


First a bit of my car history for some context, I've owned a Honda Integra DC5 type R, Currently own a 2005 Subaru Impreza STi, my wife has had 2 MX5's and her current one is a 2.0 6 speed manual sport which would be the car the '86 would replace.


I love the look of the '86 especially in the dark grey, only grip i've got is it has a boot instead of a hatch type back found on my old teg and the celica as they're far FAR more practical for normal use!


That aside the interior is pretty decent, good seats and lovely driving position.


My initial impression on driving it is very light clutch, i almost punched a hole in the firewall changing into 2nd gear! but very nicely weighted controls.


I wasn't blow away by the speed, to be honest it only feltmarginallyfaster than my wifes MX5 which has 160bhp, the car i drove only had 370 miles on the clock so will have a fair bit more power to give after a few thousand miles but itdefiantlywasn't fast by any means, butthat'snot really the point of the car so its a bit of a non issue but worth noting non the less, especially as i've had a contemporary of the Celica TSport which this car is a naturalsuccessorof.


I really liked the parpy sound from the engine, lovely distinctive boxer noise which was pretty addictive especially when chasing the limiter!


I loved the handling of it, very little body roll and lovely netural feel, i pushed into a roundabour in 2nd gear in the dry and it went into slight oversteer which could be very easily pushed out further with the throttle, the traction control kicked in at that point as the salesman was turning white... I did like the cut in of the traction control compared to the MX5 which is like a switch cutting off the throttle by comparison.


One thing i did find was the pedals wen't very well spaced for heel and toeing, i was able to get used to it and do it fine by the end of the test drive but it didn't feel perfectly spaced for it.


I left feeling very happy with the car it was everything i expected it to be having followed it since the FT86, it didn't exceed my expectations really butthat'sfine as i expected it to be pretty good anyway!


Will i be ordering one? Not sure really, if it had a proper hatch instead of a boot im pretty sure we would, it sounds stupid but we've got to live with the car every day and something like that can get very annoying very quickly. Once it becomes 2-3 years old forreasonablemoney we might well be able to overlook that but for 25k its alot of money to spend for something that's not perfect for us.


Thanks for reading
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
sovietspybob said:
Right first post here!

I went out for a test drive in a lovely dark grey manual '86 onFridayafternoon at the Llandudno Junction Toyota in north wales.


First a bit of my car history for some context, I've owned a Honda Integra DC5 type R, Currently own a 2005 Subaru Impreza STi, my wife has had 2 MX5's and her current one is a 2.0 6 speed manual sport which would be the car the '86 would replace.


I love the look of the '86 especially in the dark grey, only grip i've got is it has a boot instead of a hatch type back found on my old teg and the celica as they're far FAR more practical for normal use!


That aside the interior is pretty decent, good seats and lovely driving position.


My initial impression on driving it is very light clutch, i almost punched a hole in the firewall changing into 2nd gear! but very nicely weighted controls.


I wasn't blow away by the speed, to be honest it only feltmarginallyfaster than my wifes MX5 which has 160bhp, the car i drove only had 370 miles on the clock so will have a fair bit more power to give after a few thousand miles but itdefiantlywasn't fast by any means, butthat'snot really the point of the car so its a bit of a non issue but worth noting non the less, especially as i've had a contemporary of the Celica TSport which this car is a naturalsuccessorof.


I really liked the parpy sound from the engine, lovely distinctive boxer noise which was pretty addictive especially when chasing the limiter!


I loved the handling of it, very little body roll and lovely netural feel, i pushed into a roundabour in 2nd gear in the dry and it went into slight oversteer which could be very easily pushed out further with the throttle, the traction control kicked in at that point as the salesman was turning white... I did like the cut in of the traction control compared to the MX5 which is like a switch cutting off the throttle by comparison.


One thing i did find was the pedals wen't very well spaced for heel and toeing, i was able to get used to it and do it fine by the end of the test drive but it didn't feel perfectly spaced for it.


I left feeling very happy with the car it was everything i expected it to be having followed it since the FT86, it didn't exceed my expectations really butthat'sfine as i expected it to be pretty good anyway!


Will i be ordering one? Not sure really, if it had a proper hatch instead of a boot im pretty sure we would, it sounds stupid but we've got to live with the car every day and something like that can get very annoying very quickly. Once it becomes 2-3 years old forreasonablemoney we might well be able to overlook that but for 25k its alot of money to spend for something that's not perfect for us.


Thanks for reading
Welcome, and thanks for your review.


I take your point about practicality. It does have a small boot.
 

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sovietspybob said:
Right first post here!



the car i drove only had 370 miles on the clock so will have a fair bit more power to give after a few thousand miles

This will be interesting to find out. Most new cars I have owned have been tight for a few thousand miles. Some cars don't loosen up until nearer 5K miles, and it's a lot more noticeable on a N.A. engine than a turbo because of the power bands and the way they make power.


Some test reviews have commented that the engine feels a bit strained at higher rpm's. Perhaps this will diminish once the car has a few more miles under it's belt? Flat fours are normally pretty smooth.
 
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