Feature16 October 2012

When you’ve done as much fast driving as Jonathan Palmer - been a successful Formula 1 driver, raced Le Mans and BTCC, staged hundreds of track days and trained thousands of drivers on your own circuits - you’re likely to be hard to impress when a new 2.0-litre, four-cylinder sports coupé comes along.

But when JP stepped out of this year’s BBDC champ, the Toyota GT86, having done 20 smoking, tail-out, full-speed laps of the Bedford Autodrome, he made no attempt to restrain his enthusiasm.

“I’ve not been in a GT86 before, but my instant verdict is that it’s terrific,” he said. “Sure, it’s not super-powerful, but it’s nicely balanced and reasonably torquey. The power delivery is smooth, there’s a nice lusty growl from the engine and the gearbox and clutch are lovely.”

Palmer reckons his appreciation of road cars starts with the driving position, and the GT86 has the best. “The wheel is the right size and set almost vertically,” he said. “You’re hunkered down in the car and well located because there’s great side support from the seats.”

However, the handling won JP’s biggest accolade because it’s fun for the novice yet (with stability control off) a decent challenge for the expert. “The grip’s okay,” he explained, “but best of all is the balance. The front will go a bit, the rear will go a bit - it’s your choice. But whatever you do, there’s a feeling of delicacy.

"We’ve all come to expect electronics to correct chassis faults and dull things in the process. Also to think big tyres and stiff suspensions are always right. But this car takes you straight back to an era of mechanical purity, when cars like the Escort Mexico gave you an exquisite, connected feel. That makes it very special.”  

Join the debate

Comments
12

24 October 2012

Can't any competant ex-racer do this?,didn't bother watching, because drifting is drifting isn't it?, what different can you do,especially on a track.

Peter Cavellini.

16 January 2013

One thing I'd really like to touch upon is that weightloss program fast can be performed by the correct diet and exercise. A person's size not just affects the look, but also the complete quality of life. Self-esteem, depressive disorder, health risks, plus physical skills are disturbed in putting on weight. It is possible to just make everything right but still gain. In such a circumstance, a medical problem may be the offender. While an excessive amount of food instead of enough exercising are usually responsible, common health concerns and widespread prescriptions could greatly increase size. I am grateful for your post in this article. tempurpedic simplicity reviews

30 January 2013

Hi, I thought I would drop you a line and inform you that your page layout is really messed up on the Firefox browser. Seems to work fine in Internet Explorer however. Anyways keep up the good work.
review of jump manual

30 October 2012
  • Active years 1983 - 1989
  • Races 88 (83 starts)
  • Championships 0
  • Wins 0
  • Podiums 0
  • Career points 14
  • Pole positions 0
  • Fastest laps 1
  • source: en.wikipedia.org 

16 November 2012

Toyota is a good car brand. I have a taux hypothèque friends who have the same car with this. He is very good in terms of canadian mortgage rate.

14 December 2012

All you have to do is ask yourself what sort of person would buy this car and why, then you have all the answers you will ever need to understand the DB9 and also why it's price is spot on.custom packaging boxes

26 May 2014

A very fast car. The Toyota GT86 is one of the cars that I wanted because it is fast.

12 January 2013

Nice Car, but as far as for drifting more exciting are tracks located in forests between trees. More adrenaline! Smile

18 June 2013

the offender. While an excessive amount of food instead of enough exercising are usually responsible, common health concerns and widespread prescriptions could greatly increase size. I am grateful for your post in this article  

B2B Werbeagentur

 

18 June 2013

Mans and BTCC, staged hundreds of track days and trained thousands of drivers on your own circuits - you’re likely to be hard to impress when a new 2.0-litre, four-cylinder sports coupé comes along.

Kinderbetreuung Muenchen

Pages

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • Citroen C11.2 Puretech 82 Furio
    First Drive
    29 September 2016
    Citroën's city car gets a new sporty-looking trim level, adding visual adornments, but no premium for the 1.2-litre Puretech triple we're driving
  • Mercedes C350e Sport
    First Drive
    28 September 2016
    Petrol-electric C-Class is a surprisingly well-priced alternative to a diesel but not the greatest example of the new ‘PHEV’ breed
  • 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

Latest videos