FINAL REPORT - scroll down for earlier reports
“It’s not very fast” was the opening remark a friend made after seeing the specification of our Subaru BRZ.
True, 197bhp and a 7.6sec 0-62mph time are nothing to shout about in 2018, but, after six months with the car, I am very aware of how little those things matter.
What matters is the way the BRZ makes you feel as a driver. Anyone can boot a throttle and let their car do the work, but few will be in something so confidence-inspiring that they can balance it on the edge of grip for a dozen or more laps on a drizzle-covered Brands Hatch. The BRZ is very good at that.
Thing is, we knew all that before our WR Blue Mica coupé arrived on the Autocar fleet. It’s a five-star road test car, after all.
What we didn’t know was how running a sub-£30k 2+2 sports car that prioritises driver engagement above all else would leave us. Would its low-slung body chin-slap every speed bump on my urban commute? Would a lack of torque from its naturally aspirated 2.0-litre flat four leave me trailing in the wake of electrified minicabs? I had six months to find out.
When the BRZ photobombs the pre-wed photo pic.twitter.com/PUKuGiTnIs
— Sam Sheehan (@autoSamSheehan) September 27, 2017
In what is fast becoming a tradition for my long-term cars, the opening test involved squeezing three best friends and myself into the BRZ and hauling ourselves up to Leeds for a university reunion. This was a bad decision. In a hot hatchback, such a task should be easy, but in the BRZ, it was a challenge. Anyone taller than 4ft will find the back seats offer no leg room unless the person in front is coaxed into edging forward.