Imagine if you will a world where uncompromising performance, agility, sex-factor and practicality combine to create the perfect car. Sounds a little like the Ferrari FF, no? The problem with the four-wheel drive Fezza, however, is that it costs almost as much as our aforementioned world (£227,107 to be exact), is thirstier than Charlie Sheen (15.4mpg) and less fun to drive than a £25k Toyota GT86 – a two-door sports car that’s down on the FF’s sanctimonious 650bhp power figure by a hefty 453 horses.
But the GT86 is no saint, either. Unlike the FF, its practicality is compromised by its pesky coupe silhouette. If you’re a car-mad, married dad, strike this from your list; it’s simply not big enough for your mistress and six-month-old.
But, as we mentioned last week, we are here to make 2013 a better place (remember our F1-inspired Twizy?). Enter stage left the Toyota GT86 Shooting Brake.
This is the car you thought we never needed, but now that it’s staring you in the face, it makes sense, right? Of course, our idea here isn’t to replace the current GT86 coupe. That would be ridiculous. What the optional GT86 Shooting Brake version does, is make your Car Of The Year available to keen drivers with busy family lives and a penchant for a cheeky roundabout drift.
The Important Changes
The Shooting Brake’s body length is increased by 55mm, giving cramped rear passengers (putting it mildly) much-needed legroom for longer journeys. The current fold-flat rear bench is also ditched in favour of a practical 60/40 split unit.
Thanks to the SB’s new body, seats-up boot capacity is increased from a tight 243 litres to a more family-friendly 298 litres, while seats-down capacity measures in at a useful 1040 litres (or 230 packs of nappies/diapers).
Engine and transmission options will match those of the coupe (2.0-litre Subaru-derived boxer unit mated to either a six-speed manual or six-cog auto ‘box), while the Shooting Brake’s 0-62mph time of 7.8 and 8.5sec respectively is slower than the coupe’s by 0.2 and 0.3sec. This is due to the SB’s 86kg weight penalty. Naturally.
UK pricing will start at £26,945 for the manual Shooting Brake version and £28,445 for the automatic. This represents an increase of just £1,950 for both models.
So there you have it, Toyota. A brilliant new business plan for a car your customers never knew they wanted.