The Toyota 86 and Subaru BRZ coupe twins may become separated if a convertible gets the go-ahead. Well-placed sources in Japan say the Toyota 86 convertible does not automatically mean a Subaru BRZ drop-top will follow.
The first Subaru apparently knew about the Toyota 86 convertible concept car due to be unveiled at next month’s Geneva motor show was when media reports surfaced late last week.
News Limited has been told Toyota is considering a convertible version of the popular 86 sportscar following strong public feedback. The car was never intended to be a convertible from the beginning, said the source.
This means that Toyota’s Geneva concept car truly is designed to gauge public reaction before deciding whether or not to proceed. If Toyota gives the 86 drop-top the green light it would likely take at least two years to make it showroom-ready.
News Limited understands the Toyota86/Subaru BRZ factory is currently not set up to build a convertible. One option Toyota is believed to be considering is to farm out the work to a coachbuilder, as done by many European brands.
Toyota Australia spokesman Mike Breen said: “Toyota is unveiling a concept car at the Geneva motor show and at this stage no decision has been made as to whether it will be built or not.”
When contacted by News Limited today, Subaru Australia boss Nick Senior repeated his comments of a fortnight ago. “There is not a convertible BRZ in our plans.”
This reporter is on Twitter: @JoshuaDowling