“The GT86 is at the stage where it’s being decided on the next one,” Toyota Europe boss Karl Schlicht revealed. “Then a chief engineer will be assigned and away we go.”
The 197bhp rear-wheeldrive GT86 has carved out a niche as a fun driver’s car, but like most sports models, its strong early sales have subsequently subsided.
“The GT86 will carry on,” said Schlicht. “The car serves a big purpose. We are not getting out of that business. Sporty cars go through their phases. It’s our intention to continue with that car.”
Continued co-operation with Subaru also looks likely but is as yet unconfirmed.
“Will it be with Subaru?” said Schlicht. “I don’t know. But for the concept to carry on, with the low engine, we’d have to do that. There are a lot of reasons to continue with Subaru.”
A key engineering feature of the GT86 is its low-slung Subaru flat four engine, which keeps the centre of gravity low for better handling.
Schlicht also suggested that a soft-top version of the GT86 was unlikely. “We wouldn’t do it on the current model,” he said. “That doesn’t mean dealers wouldn’t like one, but there are so many other priorities that I don’t think we’ve got spare capacity for that.”
“That co-operation is going well,” said Schlicht. “It’s on track. It’s being done in Europe. Our version is a different car from BMW’s.”