Toyota's forthcoming sports coupe has been caught testing in Europe ahead of UK sales in 2012

Toyota’s forthcoming sports coupe has arrived in Europe for spring mileage at the Nurburgring - and is wearing its final bodywork, judging by the extensive disguise applied to the test car in these latest images.

The rear-drive coupe is a joint project between Toyota and Subaru, and it’ll use a version of the latter firm’s flat-four ‘boxer’ engine in a bid to keep weight as low as possible. Toyota also hoped this layout would allow it to retain the FT-86’s super-low nose, but the design team is said to have been struggling to get the early styling to pass pedestrian impact regulations.

See all the pics of the Toyota FT-86

As such, the car spied here is closer to the second-gen FT-86 II that was shown at Geneva - which tallies with predictions from Toyota insiders that the most recent concept would be “95 per cent” of the final model. Toyota does appear to have softened the edges of the concept’s Lexus LFA-inspired front end, including toning down the gaping air intakes - and integrated its rear spoiler into the bodywork more effectively.

Read more on the Toyota FT-86

It’s still not clear if the production car will use the same name as the concept, although the ethos behind the model - a tribute to Toyota’s classic AE86 Corolla - would seem to make it likely. Subaru will also sell its own version - which should have a more potent version of the 2.0 motor - and Toyota’s model is being tipped to be sold under its Scion youth brand in the US.

The final production version of the FT-86 is expected to make its public debut at the Tokyo motor show at the end of this year. UK sales will start in the first half of 2012.

See all the latest Toyota reviews, news and video

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • Car review
    23 September 2016
    Aston kicks off its ‘second century plan’ with an all-new turbo V12 grand tourer
  • Ford Ka+ 1.2 Ti-VCT 85
    First Drive
    22 September 2016
    A rounded, refined and well-sorted bargain supermini – once you’re used to the confusing role redefinition imposed on the once-cheeky Ka
  •  Maserati Ghibli Diesel
    First Drive
    22 September 2016
    Maserati releases another range of updates for its range best seller, the Ghibli. We've driven the diesel version, but there's little improvement on before
  • Tipo Front
    First Drive
    21 September 2016
    New Fiat Tipo offers impressive space and practicality for a reasonable price. We try the 1.6 diesel on the demanding roads of North Wales
  • Seat Ateca 1.4 TSI 150
    First Drive
    20 September 2016
    The Seat Ateca 1.4 TSI 150 makes perfect sense: it's spacious, tidy to drive for an SUV and cheap to run