IntroductionThe 2013 Subaru BRZ is a new 2+2 sports coupe with rear-wheel drive. The car was co-engineered with Toyota, which sells its version as the Scion FR-S. Subaru plans to build just 5,000 examples of the 2013 BRZ.
Exterior FeaturesSubaru says the new 2013 BRZ has one of the lowest centers of gravity of any production car in the world, at 18.1 inches. A low center of gravity translates to superior handling, especially when paired with the proper steering, suspension, and wheel/tire combination.
To that end, the BRZ is equipped with sport-tuned electric steering, a sport suspension, and 17-inch aluminum wheels shod with 215/45 summer performance tires. Additionally, Subaru says the BRZ is one of the lightest vehicles of its kind, weighing just 2,762 pounds.
Interior FeaturesEvery 2013 Subaru BRZ is equipped with a standard navigation system, which is operated using voice control or a 6.1-inch LCD touch screen. Bluetooth hands-free calling and music streaming is also standard, and the BRZ provides standard SMS text messaging capability. The 8-speaker stereo includes HD Radio, MP3/WMA/CD playback, iPod control with iTunes tagging capability, USB port, and an auxiliary audio input jack. The stereo is satellite ready, but a free trial subscription is not included.
Subaru notes that between the trunk and the rear-seat area, the BRZ (which is not a hatchback though it looks like one) offers enough space to transport four tires and tools to track events, thanks in part to the car's folding rear seatback.
Optional FeaturesSubaru offers the new 2013 BRZ in two trim levels: Premium and Limited. Paying extra for the BRZ Limited means buyers receive leather seats with Alcantara suede inserts, heated front seats, heated side mirrors, dual-zone automatic climate control, fog lights, keyless access and push-button start, rear spoiler, interior courtesy lighting, and more.
Under the HoodThe Subaru BRZ is equipped with a high-performance version of the company's new 2.0-liter, horizontally opposed, 4-cylinder "Boxer" engine. Thanks in part to a high compression ratio and both direct and port fuel injection, this engine makes 200 horsepower at 7,000 rpm and 151 lb.-ft. of torque at 6,400 rpm, effectively generating 100 horsepower per liter of displacement.
The BRZ's rear wheels are fed power through a standard 6-speed manual or optional 6-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters mounted to the steering wheel. The automatic transmission features Sport and Winter driving modes, and includes throttle-blipping during downshifts. A limited-slip rear differential helps to make best use of the BRZ's power.
Fuel EconomyThe 2013 Subaru BRZ requires premium gas. According to the EPA, fuel-economy ratings are:
- BRZ with manual transmission: 22/30/25 mpg (city/hwy/combined)
- BRZ with automatic transmission: 25/34/28 mpg
SafetyEvery 2013 Subaru BRZ is equipped with six air bags; 4-wheel ventilated-disc anti-lock brakes with electronic brake-force distribution, brake assist, and a brake override system; stability control; and a traction control system with five different modes, including a Sport mode and an "Off" mode for competitive driving events. Whiplash protection front-seat designs are used for the BRZ, and like other Subarus, the BRZ is equipped with what the company calls a ring-shaped reinforcement safety frame.
As this preview is published, the 2013 Subaru BRZ has not been crash-tested by the NHTSA or IIHS.
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